This Chinese grandad’s health remedy really sucks, but at least he means well

Nurse disabuses elderly relative who thought warming his grandson’s drip tube in his mouth would make the child’s ‘medication’ easier to take

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 06 February, 2018, 2:18pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 06 February, 2018, 3:16pm

A Chinese man who put his grandson’s intravenous drip tube into his mouth to warm it up so the child would not have to receive cold medicine was misguided, a senior nurse said.

A photograph of Hu Juhai sucking the plastic tube while standing behind a chair occupied by the unnamed boy at a medical centre in Xuzhou, east China’s Jiangsu province, caused the usual stir on social media, with people praising and lambasting the elderly relative in equal measure, the news website Thepaper.cn reported on Sunday.

“The weather is cold, I fear that my grandson can’t take it if the medical fluid that flows into his body is of a very low temperature,” Hu said, adding that he had taken his grandson to the clinic in Taoyuan, Suining county, to be treated for cough and a cold.

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Hu said the child’s parents, who are migrant workers in other parts of the country, were worried their son might develop pneumonia if his cold weather worsened.

However, his well-meaning sucking was unlikely to have done anything to help.

In a report by Pengcheng Evening News, Hou Lina, a senior nurse from a hospital in Xuzhou, discouraged such behaviour.

“We can understand the grandad’s love for the child, but the temperature needed to activate the fluid is different in each case,” she said.

“[His actions] could affect the effectiveness of the medication.”

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Neither report said what was actually in the IV drip bag.

An internet user said: “Although this method isn’t scientific … the old man’s love and concern for his grandson is indeed very moving.”

China has about 61 million “left-behind” children, the term used to describe youngsters left in the care of grandparents or other relatives while their mothers and fathers work as migrants elsewhere in the country.