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  Singapore College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Library Introduction

The Singapore College of Traditional Chinese Medicine (SCTCM) Library was founded in 1946 when Singapore Chinese Physicians' Association had just been established, using academic shares as funding. It was named as the Library Section at that time, holding a rather significant collection of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and western medicine books and periodicals published in the 1930s in Shanghai and other parts of China, which were free for library members to browse. It was renamed as the Library when Singapore Chinese Physician Training School (SCPTS) was established in 1953, and was open to members and students for browsing and borrowing.

In October 1956, Mr Lee Kong Chian donated a total of one thousand dollars to the SCPTS Library for the purchase of medical journals and periodicals. At the start of 1960, the library imported TCM ancient literature that were published in China and chinese-translated versions of modern medical science books and journals, multiplying the library collection. The Library was then relocated to the third floor of Toa Payoh Singapore Chung Hwa Medical Institution Building in 1979, and it subscribed to several TCM periodicals from China on top of purchasing more TCM and western medicine books. On 16 September 1980, the Library officially opened its doors to all members and students, offering its collection of over 5000 books, journals and periodicals. By 1984, the Library collection comprised a total of over 13000 books and periodicals, and also opened its doors to the public. In 1992, the Library moved to the 4th level with the expansion of Toa Payoh Singapore Chung Hwa Medical Institution building. It had amassed a total of over 70000 books and periodicals by 2003.
As of 2023, the Library holds an astounding 96811 over TCM and western medicine books and periodicals, of which include those with parts in English, English-Mandarin bilingual versions, and Japanese and Korean literature. Currently the largest TCM-related resource library in South East Asia, the Library collects several books on western medicine, history, literature, philosophy and humanities apart from amassing large volumes of TCM literature. Over 70 years of article clippings, meeting records and photographs belonging to Singapore Chinese Physicians' Association, and various South East Asian TCM periodicals are also kept in the Library. The Library was first arranged according to Wang Yun-Wu's Unified Classification for foreign and Chinese books, which was later altered so that TCM and western medicine, and ancient and modern medical literature could be classified together. There are currently ten classification sections: General; Foundation Studies; Internal Medicine; External Medicine and the Five Sense Organs; Gynaecology and Paediatrics; Diagnostics; Pharmacology, Formulary and Herbs; Therapeutics; Acupuncture and Moxibustion; Public Health and Others.
The SCTCM Library currently consists of four functional areas: Borrowing Section, Reference Section, Reading Room, and TCM Literature Museum. The Borrowing Section mainly stores books and periodicals, with officers specially assigned to handle the borrowing and returning of books; the Reference Section stores TCM literature, rare collections of ancient medical literature, and mimeograph copies of handwritten TCM teaching materials self-compiled during SCPTS's early days, which are for browsing and referencing in the Library only (not for borrowing); the Reading Room provides more seats for teachers and students to use while reading or revising outside of classes, and also provides seats for multimedia usage where students can use the computers to browse the Internet, CDs, course materials and videos etc; the TCM Literature Museum not only displays relics and photographs from the historical development of SCPA and SCPA's subsidiaries, which include Chung Hwa Medical Institution, SCTCM, Chung Hwa Medical & Drugs Research Institute and Chung Hwa Acupuncture Research Institution, but also some rare literature that are able to reflect Singapore's TCM development history, epitomizing Singapore's historical developments in TCM. Additionally, the Library has display cabinets containing immersed local TCM herb specimens and display windows showing TCM herb specimens, which mainly consist of TCM plant specimens, prepared decoction pieces and small amounts of animal and mineral TCM specimens, so as to introduce the forms and uses of TCM herbs and spread awareness on TCM scientific knowledge.
The SCTCM Library acts as the College's literature reference centre and holds the responsibility of providing services for College teaching, research, medical treatment and the society, preserving cultural heritage and providing literature reference services. The College Library will continue as always to provide multi-level, high quality TCM information resources and knowledge services to our wide range of teachers, students and members.

Singapore College of Traditional Chinese Medicine
CPE Reg. No.:201201406K
Registration Validity Period: 04-03-2023 to 03-03-2027

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Cert No.:EDU-2-2055
Validity Period:
23-05-2022 to 22-05-2026
ADD: 640 Lorong 4 Toa Payoh Singapore 319522
TEL: +65-6250 3088 FAX: +65-6356 9901
Last modified on 13-May-2024