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“The Doctor said the placenta was detached which caused the baby to be in a pool of blood, suffocating! Caesarian was the split decision made to save my baby. Hearing this, I thanked the doctor and God for saving my son. He was a premature boy weighing only 1. 8 kgs and I named him ‘Jeeva’ translating to ‘life’ in Sanskrit. ” These were my mother’s words as she explained her painful delivery in my birthplace, Kinshasa. Hearing this, I realized how a doctor’s quick decision had had an impact on my life even before I came into this world. Having lived in DR Congo for 10 years, my desire to study Medicine originated from the agonies that I experienced as a child, where a simple diarrheal disease was one of the symptoms of Malaria and Ebola; the leading cause of death. These avoidable diseases prevail due to the lack of adequate sanitation and safe water. I may not be able to ameliorate these problems but I know that a career as a doctor will be both rewarding for me and valuable to others.
To gain further insight into the Medical field, I volunteered at a hospital in DR Congo for a week. What intrigued me was the extensive role of a GP in a community. He conducted many complex surgeries despite the lack of facilities. This gave me an idea of how compassionate and flexible a doctor has to be. When I shadowed a cardiologist in Chennai, India, I observed, including others, a catheter insertion and an angioplasty procedure. I gained a sound overview of the responsibilities and dedication required by a Medical team.
Accompanying a doctor on his rounds and working at the OPD helped me understand how important a methodical approach to writing notes and good team management are, to diagnose ailments correctly. I learnt basic clinical techniques like taking the blood pressure and temperature of patients. Conversations with them and the staff developed my communication skills, which I deem vital in the field of Medicine, as without them it is impossible to identify the needs of a patient and consequently help them get better. I specifically enjoyed talking to a patient about to undertake a bypass surgery, which improved my interpersonal skills. I have been acquiring this skill throughout my life, as I have had to change schools three times living in three different countries. This international exposure helped me learn Tamil, English, French, Lingala, and Swahili to socialize with people of different backgrounds and nationalities, increasing my adaptability. My interest in Medicine and my desire to help people in need made me join the Red Cross in Nairobi, Kenya as a qualified First Aid volunteer. My skills led to my being chosen as a first aider on a Silver trip to Mt. Kenya.
Reading Biology IB Review magazines and articles of The New England Journal of Medicine have given me a profound insight into common health policies, the functions of the NHS, and up to date events in the Medical coterie. As the school tennis captain, I won several inter-school and district championships and was 3rd in U-17 ITF East-Africa. Consequently, I gained leadership skills, teamwork and forbearance. I participated in all school racket sports, winning several awards. I also enjoy debating. Being chosen as a Rapporteur in the school’s MUN, I was able to strengthen the stances of my delegates with relevant information. In Grade 10, I raised funds for a school for the disabled by playing several sports and selling food. I actively mentor weaker students in Biology and Chemistry.
At the core of Medicine is the ultimate aim of a doctor to improve the quality of life. I would truly love to be a part of this lifelong, gaining knowledge and expertise from the country with the most advanced facilities and doctors, the UK. With such a variety of experiences and my service-minded nature, I believe to be suited for this challenging and demanding field. I am determined to succeed and make vital decisions similar to that of the doctor who saved my life 17 years ago.
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