From nucleus - May 2019 - counterparts: Romania
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Adrian Balan & Rut Muresan reflect on life in Romania as medical students
It is a great opportunity for me to write for Nucleus, right after my attendance at the Sydenham Conference in London, which was a real blessing. I met many devoted Christians and I saw a lot of passion for medicine and for being a light in the medical community. I was amazed by the leadership team at CMF, learning that the greatest investment is in others, serving them, and following the example of the Lord Jesus Christ. I took home all these examples, and I try to apply them every day in my ministry.
Romania is a spectacular country, with beautiful and welcoming people. Between 1946 and 1989 Romania was under a communist regime, which represented a dark era for our nation, especially for Christians. After 1989, Romania became a democratic republic, and since 2007 is a member of the European Union. Although we have had hard times, Romanian Christians can say loud and clear: 'God is my shepherd.' And because of that, Christian doctors united their forces and developed Christian Medical Fellowship in Romania in 1990, the first non-governmental association in Romania. Today, CMF in Romania has more than 200 members across the country. We are thankful to our Lord for this.
Being a Christian medical student in Romania has its ups and downs. The greatest blessing is that we are able to meet, encourage each other and gain strong Christian principles to live by. I think the hardest part is staying firm in our principles, even when everything around is corrupt. The influence communism has had on our country is still visible in the medical system: doctors can't always get a job after they finish residency and in the poor conditions in some of our hospitals. At the same time, Romanian students can get in contact with patients and practise more than students from other countries. This can allow you to learn more about how to be 'salt and light' in the medical field, in the way you tell people about God, and in the way you treat them as a doctor.
Romania's healthcare system is not well administered. Insurance is not expensive and that's a good thing, but it can be low in quality in some parts of the country. People are not informed about health prevention, and lots of medication for chronic diseases is not available.
We do have very well-trained doctors that fight for changes, and we can see the results of their work in some of the biggest hospitals. As a Christian organisation, we try to educate future doctors to be good practitioners, but more than that to take care of their patients' souls and minds.Romania is a blessed country and medical students who are part of Romania's CMF are very thankful for the privilege of being born here. We pray to be able to spread God's word in the medical field. Our desire is to invest in medical students, so that they become doctors with Christian principles with a willingness to serve God in every aspect of their life.