Miss Aida
The country has welcomed me with open arms.

I am loving this hospital. There’s a friendliness to this place that I’ve never experienced before, an atmosphere that renews my faith in the medical profession.

From the very first day, meeting our British rugby playing, wisecracking, singing registrar, Dr. Toby Commerford and our wonderful Goth intern, Dr. Miranda Siemenowicz, I felt very much welcome. The moment Toby picked up the phone to answer Miranda’s pager and pretended to be her for a whole ten minutes while the rest of us almost pissed ourselves laughing, I knew that this would be a very different experience indeed.

I admit having felt at times, as a medical student who feels very much like she doesn’t know anything, like a rather useless commodity, one that’s often in the way and of not much use.

For the first time in my five years, I actually feel like part of a team.

I’m not the only one who shares the same view, for the fact is that our past hospital has been an entirely different experience to this warm and friendly place we’ve had the good fortune to be attached to. There’s a significant difference in the way our group’s reacted, and the difference is amazingly obvious.

I actually look forward to waking up for 730 starts, and time actually flies by in the hospital. It’s amazing the difference that one person can make to your attitude, and the fact that I feel like I’ve learnt so much more in the past two weeks than I have in the past year speaks for itself.

Granted, it’s been a rough year.

Perhaps I’ve been foolish enough to let my personal problems affect my studies, depressed enough to not take full advantage of the resources that have been offered.

Then again, sometimes it does take just one person to make all the difference, and Toby has been a wonderful mentor, and possibly one of the best doctors I’ve had the opportunity to meet, and someone who has actually made me realize why I entered this profession in the first place.

He takes incredible care of his patients, even the demented, unappreciative ones. He’s conscientious, and takes great notes, so the next people who refer to the notes will have a good picture of the patient. He won’t discharge a patient until he’s done absolutely everything he can to help them, and I’ve seen him follow up two patients, whom everyone else had told him to discharge despite not knowing the absolute cause of their hospitalization, only to diagnose them with very serious diseases which may have been easily missed due to attitudes.

He bought a demented old lady who insults him every single day a bottle of lemonade because she mentioned she’d like some. He bought us, two medical students who he’s only met for a week, lunch, because we weren’t earning an income. He actually bothers to sit down and take us through diseases, tests and conditions, finds interesting signs for us to elicit, feel and listen to. He has been patient while I stumble through presentations, unrelentless in his teaching, and always gentle and uplifting in correcting my many mistakes and lapses of judgement.

All that, and he remains a wonderful, cheerful person to everyone else.

If I can be half the doctor he is now, I will be blessed indeed.

Thank you Toby Commerford, for reminding me once again about the role that we hold as doctors-to-be. Thank you, for making me realize the reasons why I chose medicine in the first place. Thank you, for giving me the confidence, for helping me take these baby steps. Thank you, no matter what happens, for I will always remember you as the doctor who, in the truest sense of the word, was a doctor for the people.

10 Responses
  1. MRS.C Says:

    Can't wait to address you as 'Doc Aida':-p

  2. social responsibility and ethic stand.how ACCA applies to all profession.don't mind me, im half studying.cheers

  3. Zaty Says:
    This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Zaty Says:

    wow, he sounds like an amazing guy.

    all the best for him and you too =)

  5. amal Says:

    i love working with passion ^_^ hopefully, my next position would be something i'd put my whole heart in! ;)

    wish me luck..

    and well.. you too!

    nah, u don't need luck.. u'd be an awesome, sexy doc! ahaks..

  6. Anonymous Says:

    mind if i link you, miss aida ?

  7. You don't need luck. We all know you can do it.

    Are you thinking of migrating there or are you on housemanship?

  8. Al Says:

    its amazing you've found a sense of belonging here,far away from home.

  9. hurm ..... I just realise you're my only doctor friend. itupun online friend. and itupun you're so far away. haha.

  10. Laily Says:

    i want to be a toby commerford too. all the best, aida :)

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