Wang King-ho

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Wang's former residence in Beimen

Wang King-ho (Chinese: 王金河; 23 April 1916 – 13 March 2014) was a Taiwanese physician best known for treating residents of Beimen District and surrounding areas after an outbreak of blackfoot disease in the 1950s.


Wang was born in Tainan Prefecture in 1916 and attended primary and secondary school in Tainan. He graduated from the Medical School of Tokyo in 1941.[1]


He returned to Taiwan in 1943, where he found work with the Provincial Tainan Hospital after two years at Ohkubo Hospital in Tokyo. Wang opened his own practice in 1945. That same year, he was elected leader of Beiman township and later served two terms on the Tainan County Council. In the midst of that second term, Wang was imprisoned for 23 days, after which he quit politics, stepping down as councilor in 1955.[1][2]

An outbreak of blackfoot disease [zh] began in Beiman in 1956, and Wang partnered with medical professionals at National Taiwan University to research the disease. Missionary Lillian Dickson moved to Beiman in 1960 and opened the Mercy’s Door Free Clinic, which was funded by her organization Mustard Seed International, with Wang as head physician. Hsieh Wei [zh], a doctor based in Puli, Nantou, would make weekly round trips to perform amputations on patients at Mercy's Door. After Mercy's Door closed, Wang returned to his own clinic before retiring in 1996.[2][3]

Later life and legacy[edit]

Chen Shui-bian awarded Wang an Order of Brilliant Star, third class in 2007.[1] The city of Tainan commissioned a statue of Wang in 2013, and placed it at the Taiwan Blackfoot Disease Socio-Medical Service Memorial House, the site of his former clinic.[4] He died in 2014, aged 97.[5]

Wang was married to Mao Pi-mei (毛碧梅) from 1942 to her death in 1995.[1][2]


  1. ^ a b c d "Dr. Wang King-Ho --- a Story of Love". Taiwan Blackfoot Disease Socio-Medical Service Memorial House. Retrieved 8 March 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Han Cheung (6 March 2016). "Taiwan in Time: Fighting the 'black dry snake'". Taipei Times. p. 12. Retrieved 8 March 2016.
  3. ^ Wang, Flora (4 February 2009). "FEATURE : Former doctor remembers Blackfoot disease". Taipei Times. p. 2. Retrieved 8 March 2016.
  4. ^ Yang, Chin-cheng; Pan, Jason (26 November 2013). "City honors blackfoot disease fighter". Taipei Times. p. 4. Retrieved 8 March 2016.
  5. ^ Wang, Han-ping; Hung, Jui-chin (15 March 2014). "'Father of Blackfoot Disease' dies at 97". Taipei Times. p. 3. Retrieved 8 March 2016.