HouseJob Chronicles: Memoirs of an Ex-Houseofficer (5)

1. Can we meet you?

I’m Adeniran Eunice, a graduate of All Saints University, Saint Vincent and The Grenadines. 


2. What was your most favorite posting, and why?

Internal medicine a.k.a Netflix and chill. 

I liked almost everything minus the consultant ward rounds, A and E calls, outpatient clinics and the every day morning reviews. 


3. What was your least favorite posting, and why?

Paediatrics. 

Too much tension in that department, it was as if I was walking around egg shells so I was always stressed out.


4. Your best call ever?

The calls I didn’t do (either sold or simply helped)๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜€


5. Your worst call ever?

Labor ward calls….arrrgh!!!


6. Nicest Chief(s) to work with:

Dr. Sule (Obstetrics/Gynecology). He was the coolest, calmest and the most collected of all.


7. Life lessons from House job:

i. When you get what you want make sure you want what you get.

ii. God can be trusted even when life makes no sense. 

iii. Life not only takes time, life takes effort. 


8. What are you thankful for?

God’s protection over my life as a resident outside the hospital facility, and over my health during the Lassa fever scare, despite being in close contact with a patient that eventually tested positive. 


9. Your most embarrassing moment?

The day a consultant made me cry because I came late for morning review. 


10. Rate your HouseJob Experience on a scale of 1-5:

3/5


11. Call food, Yay or Nay?

Nay. I’ll eat a home-cooked meal any day. 


12. Longest day of Housejob?

Every day as a Team A member during my Paediatric Posting. Surviving each day was a testimony. 


13. Happiest day during Housejob:

The last day of Housejob, which happened to be a day before my next call ๐Ÿ˜‚. Indeed, I serve a living God.


14. New skills learnt?

Practically everything from securing an IV access to inserting a urinary catheter to scrubbing in for surgery.  

15. Any regrets?

Not taking a single vaginal delivery (but I’m a pro, now๐Ÿ˜„)


16. Most admirable consultant:

Dr. Nwafulume, simply because I was given the rest of the day off, the day we lost one of our colleagues.


17. Most likely specialty and why?

Psychiatry. For the love of mental health.


18. Most unlikely specialty. Why?  

Obstetrics and Gynecology. I detest the smell of perineal blood and waiting on labor patients is such a nightmare for me. 

19. Unforgettable patients: 

i. One of my very first patients as a House officer, who was managed as a case of ruptured typhoid ileitis. His recovery was nothing short of the miraculous. 

Like Deby said, Truly we (doctors) treat but it is God who heals.

ii. Another unforgettable patient was a young woman we managed during my surgery rotation who passed on due to complications. I’m still in touch with one of her sons, and each encounter is a sad reminder.  

iii. I once assisted in resuscitating a “Jane Doe” in the Emergency Room, who was involved in a RTA that involved multiple casualties. She couldn’t have been more than six years old, sadly she did not survive. To the best of my knowledge, no parents or caregivers came forward to claim the body (or maybe they were involved in the accident as well). 


20. Something to miss about Housejob: 

My friends. 

21. If not medicine, what?

Probably, Clinical Psychology.


22. What next after Housejob?

The Medical Officer life, then hopefully Residency. 


23. More important as an Houseofficer, skill or stuff?

Both are equally important.

But if you must find the balance, choose skill over stuff, ‘cos after HJ you’re mostly O.Y.O.


24. Favorite mantra? 

“We don’t complain, we give thanks.”


25. Shout out to (tag 3 HOs):

3 is a joke right?? Of Course it is. 

I want to appreciate all my colleagues that made my Housejob experience an awesome one. 

From @DrChimereze, the first person to show me my way around FMCL, to my unforgettable Flatmates @Emeka and @Osas, who treated me like a lady throughout our stay together, to my rotation partners @Vicky, @Comfy, @Tony, and @Nonso, who had my back always throughout our one-year-ride, to my amazing friends-turned-sisters @Sarah and @Debyo, to my one in a million sugar partner @DrM, my dearest @SPO, the ever friendly @Efosa_M.D, the easy going @DrAmeh, @KingJosh, and @DrFortune, thank you, thank you and thank you very much!!!

***

Editor’s Note: 

And the series Housejob Chronicles is officially a wrap. I hope you enjoyed each post. Don’t forget to send me an email at lolade1512@gmail.com if you have specific questions about Housejobs in Nigeria. 

Thank you for reading,

:::requ1ne:::
    โค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ

Housejob Chronicles: Memoirs of an Ex-Houseofficer (4)

1. Can we meet you?

I’m Dr Suberu Peter Omeiza. I graduated from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Kaduna State in February 2017.

2. What was your favorite posting, and why? 

O and G, by a thousand miles!

The grimace on the face of a newborn when they let out that first sweet cry. The dramatic change in countenance of the mother immediately after delivery. 

Then I like the finiteness of ObGyn stuff. Unlike other specialties, you can finish knowing O and G. And as person wey no too like book, na ObGyn be the way. 

And finally, something in my heart draws me there!

3. What was your least favorite posting, and why? 

Surgery, of course. The work was too much. 
That posting temporarily “destroyed” my cooking career and made me indulge in lots of junk food, much to the detriment of my finances.

4. Your best call ever?

Calls where I slept all through, in which the “God of calm calls” manifested his power. 

And yes there’s a God of calm calls, they that know this shall eat the fruit thereof. 


5. Your worst call ever?

Any call I did not have time to prepare for psychologically. 

(A word for the would-be Intern: Never accept sudden calls, and avoid extra calls by all means, they will drain you).

6. Nicest chief you worked with:

Dr Palma Dennis

A humble and very approachable Chief. When he rebukes he does so in love, he is stressless and apt to teach. 

7. Most admirable consultant 

Dr. Temitope Odi, Paediatric Surgeon

One of the very few consultants I worked with that wasn’t fault-finding. 

He had a way of relating with residents and interns not as subordinates but as colleagues, and created a relaxed atmosphere for his team to work in.

I also admire him for his empathy. One morning after a busy call, he noticed how tired and unkempt I looked and instructed rage SR to give me an hour for me to freshen up. 

By his example, I know a man can rise in the medical profession as a Christian without giving in to pride.    

8. Most likely specialty, and why? 

O and G. You know why. ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜‡

9. Most unlikely specialty, and why?

Surgery. You also know why๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ™„

10. Three life lessons from housejob:

i) Money is a defence.

Most of the preventable mortalities I saw during Housejob were patients that were either illiterate, poor or both. They usually present late and cannot afford their medications and investigations. 

And the broke patient is the nemesis of the House officer, they make the HOs work harder. 

My counsel: Do whatever good it takes to become wealthy; it can and will prolong your life.

ii). Relationships are golden.

The good things of this life come from God but through men. A good relationship can sometimes prove more valuable than even money. 

I remember when my younger sister was sick and managed at the A&E, I’ll never forget the kind of favour we were shown by my colleagues and the other health workers.

Getting my housejob slot itself was a miracle of relationship. It came from God, but through two men. God helps men using other men, neglect this to your detriment. 

iii). We are pilgrims

When all is said and done, we shall all stand before the judgement seat of Christ to give account of lives. 

There is a world that is to come. Having watched some patients die, I have the consciousness of this world that is to come strong in my mind. 

My counsel: Strive to be great not only in this world, but also in that which is to come, because this world is temporal and that world is eternal.

11. Thankful about:
 

The people I met.

12. Most embarrassing moment during Housejob:

A presentation on Urethral Catheterization I had in Urology unit, where the Consultant lysed me with stuff. 

Despite my supposedly adequate preparation (we’ve been moving stuff on this topic since 400l na), it was a bloody experience! ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ

13. Happiest day during Housejob:

The day it all ended October 31st 2018. I felt free, relieved and lifted.

14. Something to miss about Housejob:

No, someone I’ll miss; Dr Adeniran.

15. Rate your Housejob experience on a scale of 1-5:

3 (It was pretty fun)

16. Call food: Yay or Nay? 

Nay.

17. Longest day during Housejob?

Can’t think of one๐Ÿค”


18. Unforgettable patient?

None in particular. 

19. Any regrets?

Three things.

1) Not starting a Houseofficers Christian fellowship.

 A one-hour weekly or fortnightly fellowship would have helped in fostering togetherness and the fear of God among us. 

2) Not prioritizing savings over investments. 

Before investing you should have accumulated money in a savings account for at least a year.

The bigger the money, the easier it is to multiply it, the more careful you’ll be and the less the chances of losing it. 

3) Choosing NPMCN ObGyn primaries over IELTS. 

Raw waste of 90k. ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ซ

20. New skills learnt?

– Composure (ability to remain calm however bad the patient’s condition is. Fretting is dangerous)

– Responsibility 

– Several basic medical and surgical skills.

21. Favorite mantra:

“This life na standing fan”

A quote from one of our colleagues, Dr Ibenu Joshua. He says it playfully to imply that things in this life (good and bad) go round and come around.

I find the mantra interesting because of how accurately it applies to success and opportunities. 

Opportunity doesn’t come but once. It moves around like standing fan. Whether or not you are ready for, it will come. 

If you miss it once, it’ll go and come again. It’s an act of God’s mercy. But blessed is that man that opportunity meets prepared, he is made for life.

22. If not Medicine, then what?

Business (Website development, software development, graphic design, digital marketing) and Word Ministry.

23. Shout out to (tag 3 HOs):

My first shoutout goes to my roomie and friend, Dr Muluh Idris. A kind and tolerant person and very easily one of the nicest people I know. 

Then Dr Adeniran Eunice. She was my go-to person for gist, word, fun and comfort. Being around her lifts my spirit, always. She is the perfect blend of beauty, wisdom, spirituality and love. A real friend. A feminist whose feminity is very much intact. 

Also, Dr Ameh Emmanuel, a gentle man to the core. Almost always smiling. He works with a lot of dedication. Working with him in OnG posting was one of the pleasant moments I wouldn’t forget in a hurry.

24. What next after housejob? 



I’ll wait on God to receive strength and Word for the assignment that lies ahead (during NYSC). 

After service, I’ll go wherever God wants and do whatever He wants, be it the PLAB/Canada pathway, residency in Nigeria or full time Word Ministry.

25. More important as a HO, skill or stuff? 

Skill joor, who stuff epp? We’ll get the stuff when we come back for residency.


26.  Thank you for sharing your Housejob experience:

<Smiles> It’s my pleasure.

***

Editor’s Note:

Dr. Peter fondly called SPO, is an enthusiastic, self-motivated and multitalented friend. My go-to person for everything technical, a world class personal financial coach in making, and a generally lovely person to hangout with.

He’s a dynamic young man whose faith in God is beyond the tangible things. His passion on almost any topic is contagious and you can hardly miss his voice when you’re together in a room. 

When he’s not reading a good book, he enjoys playing a soccer game, listening to a sermon/music or watching an action movie. 


Cheers!

:::requ1ne:::

March|| 5 Survival Tips For Your Next Level

Hello fam,

I have some Goodnews!

Yours truly recently landed a job. ๐Ÿ’ƒ๐Ÿ’ƒ๐Ÿ’ƒ

If you’ve been following this blog, you’ll know I’ve been job hunting (post housejob) for a while now.

Remember the job offer one of my friends called me about in this post?

Well…I got it (miraculously, cos the job needed me too..haha) and I’ve since ported to Ilorin.

Tbh, the move came with mixed feelings cos I was already comfy with living at home and being involved in my local church.

Sighs.

Still, I’m thankful the job came when it did cos baby girl was quarter to being broke…๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

The first few days of my job were very challenging because there was so much to learn.

Private medical practice is just so different from working in a Government hospital. 

Here, you have to find the fine balance between pleasing your employer, pleasing your clients and doing your job.

I panicked a few times and actually thought of quitting *face palm*

But God was gracious enough to send me his word which gave me so much peace and a sense of direction.

Whether you just landed a new job like me, you recently got married or you’re a first time parent, being in the next level can be so overwhelming that sometimes you feel like returning to your old life just like the Israelites in Numbers 11:5

Can you imagine???๐Ÿ˜ฑ



From my own experience, here are a few survival tips that can help you transition into your new level:

1. Pray:


A period of transition, is an intense opportunity to pray. Among other things:

  • Prayer gives you clarity and focus.
  • Prayer gives you strength and stamina.
  • Prayer gives you resources and divine strategies.
  • Prayers gives you leverage over your contemporaries through the help of the Holy spirit.

 God wants you to succeed in your next level, so no matter the challenges you may be facing, he cares.

โ€œLeave all your worries with him, because he cares for you.โ€

1 Peter 5:7 GNB

2. Relax:

Now that you have arrived at your next level, don’t be on overdrive.

It’s natural to want to prove your worth. But you don’t have to prove anything in your human strength.

Here’s Gods promise for you:

โ€œShall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the Lord: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb? saith thy God.โ€

Isaiah 66:9 KJV

The Lord who brought you to your next level is able to sustain you. Trust him and keep learning.

3. Retreat

To retreat is to withdraw to a safe and quiet place. A time of transition is a perfect time for solitude. 

When you retreat, you conserve your energy, time and even your money.

As a newbie in your next level, you’re still trying to figure out a lot of things, so you can’t be going everywhere or doing everything like before.
You may even need to let go of some friends, habits or hobbies. 

Stop wishing for your old life, a new phase is here. Give it the attention it needs so that you can blossom.

4. Plan:

The next step is to Observe and Strategize.

You need to put in a lot of hardwork into planning and executing than you did before. 

Don’t just sit and allow life to happen to you, make a conscious effort to happen to life.

What worked for you last year may not work for you this year.
What worked for you in your old job may not work for you in your new job. 
What worked for you as a Bachelor may not work for you as a married man. 

However, this is not to cause you despair, because not everything can be to your disadvantage.

In fact, something has to be working in your favor. Look for that one thing and make the most of it.

A new level demands a new you. 


5. Adapt.

The last step is to adapt  i.e. make the necessary adjustments.

So what is your action plan?

Now that you have arrived at your next level, what vital steps are you willing to take so that you can succeed?

Are there some adjustments you must make to have a more productive lifestyle?

Here’s my action plan for my new job:

  • Be Punctual to work (as much as possible)
  • Have breakfast everyday (a hungry doctor is an angry doctor ๐Ÿ˜œ)
  • Stay cheerful (no matter how stressed out I feel)
  • Learn something new daily (within or outside work)
  • Find time to rest and play (all work and no play…)

Of course there will be challenges in this new phase of your journey, however,

 Challenges are not meant to frustrate you, but to motivate you.

Finally, the goal in your next level should not just be for you to survive but to thrive.

Cheers to the new you and Happ new month!

:::requ1ne:::

Housejob Chronicles: Memoirs of an Ex-Houseofficer (3)

1. Can we meet you?

My name is Deborah Okonji, but everyone calls me Deby

I’m a Medical Doctor and I finished from University of Benin, Nigeria, in 2017. 

I did my internship at FMC Lokoja from 2017-2018.

2. What was your favorite posting, and why?

Surprisingly Paediatrics

I say it’s surprising because I didn’t like the posting as a student, it was tiring and we had lots of wicked Ogas (senior doctors).

However during housejob, many of my chiefs were easy going and there were lots of hands-on experiences too.

3. What was your least favorite posting, and why?

Surgery. 

It stressed every living cell and even the dead cells in my body. 

Thankfully, it lasted only 2 months (thanks to the  JOHESU strike). 

Then we had to work from 8 a.m. till 10 p.m. on an almost daily basis which was really annoying.

4. Your best call ever?

My first 48 hour (weekend) call in pediatrics with one of my favorite chiefs ever, Dr. Owa. 

It wasn’t so busy and I even ate chicken during the call.๐Ÿ˜€

5. Your worst call ever?

Another call I did in Paediatrics ๐Ÿ˜ฑ with a certain chief (whose name I won’t mention), that particular call seemed to have come from the pit of hell. 

At the end, I was drained both physically and mentally.

6. Nicest Chief(s) you worked with:

i. Dr Owa (Pediatrics): He was kind, patient and had a lot of skills and stuff. He always made sure that I was learning and allowed me the freedom to take some patient centred decisions at my own level.

ii. Dr Kayode (Internal Medicine): He was a fun guy. He taught me the importance of being careful and looking out for myself as a doctor.

iii. Dr Adedigba (Pediatrics): He made the posting a little more relaxing. He also allowed me a lot of hands-on experience.

iv. Dr Ibrahim (Surgery): He was also fun and had a way of making me calm down. In short, he was a breath of fresh air from the wahala in Surgery.

7. Life lessons from HouseJob:

i. Humility: Be humble enough to learn, anybody can be your teacher.

ii. Patience: Be patient with your patients, sometimes all they need is reassurance.

iii. Friendship: If you are approachable and show yourself friendly to others, you’ll find yourself making lots of friends. And who knows where the friendship will lead?

8. What are you thankful for about your Housejob experience?

i. Great Friends like Ifeoluwa, we went from complete strangers to roommates to friends then sisters.๐Ÿ’‹๐Ÿ’‹

ii. Opportunity to learn without tension. I was able to approach and ask my senior colleagues lots of questions.

iii. The courage and encouragement I got to do take certain courses and even write some exams despite the stress.

iv. The opportunity to serve as a Treasurer in the Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), FMCL Chapter. It was an eye-opening experience. 

9. Your most embarrassing moment:

I can’t think of any, maybe because I selectively forget bad memories…lol

10. Rate your HouseJob on a scale of 1-5:

3.5 (between pretty fun to awesome because I was able to make a lot of friends, some crazy ones at that!!)

11. Call food, Yay or Nay?

Nay. 

Although half bread is better than none. Cos I learnt that some centres don’t give their doctors call food. 

12. Longest day ever?

One of the very busy weekend (Sunday) calls I had in in Internal medicine.

Nephrology unit was usually stressful. Being on a Sunday call to resume a very busy Monday was simply horrible.

13. Happiest day during Housejob:

I can’t lie, I don’t know. 

14. New skills learnt?

– Sharper clinical acumen

– Management of critically ill patients

– Practical surgical skills

– Balancing my relationship with other members of the healthcare team. 

15. Any regrets?

I finally didn’t learn how to set a central line. ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

16. Most admirable consultant(s):

i. Dr. Umoru (Gastroenterologist)

Pretty easy going man, really nice to work with. He never rushes over any step while with his patients. 

ii. Dr. Taiwo (Paediatric Surgeon)

A wonderful and skilled surgeon with great leadership skills. 

He is not insultive (unlike some others), instead encourages one’s efforts despite mistakes. He also doesn’t lord it over his younger colleagues.

17. Likely specialty and why?

Paediatrics, Psychiatry or Emergency Medicine.

I’m yet to make up my mind. I like all of them for different reasons.

18. Most unlikely specialty. Why?  

Obstetrics and Gynecology. I just find it annoying. ๐Ÿ˜’

19. Unforgettable patients: 

i. A baby we managed for Meningitis, who was on admission for 3 weeks and fought through it. We thought she wouldn’t make it but God still works miracles. 

Truly we treat but God heals.

ii. Another unforgettable patient was a woman who was treated for advanced ovarian cancer and had surgery. 

A month after her discharge, she looked so healthy that even I couldn’t recognize her. 

Again, God answers prayers and he is ultimately the healer.

20. Something to miss about Housejob: 

Well, I’m glad I’m no longer at the bottom of the doctors ladder. (Lol).

I miss my friends, colleagues and some Chiefs. They made life bearable.

21. If not medicine, what?

I’d probably be making clothes, or be a Public Speaker since I like talking.

22. What next after Housejob?

NYSC of course. And then I can go on living my best life.

23. More important as an Houseofficer, skill or stuff?

I’d say skill is a bit more important especially if you’ve built your stuff overtime from med school. Housejob is the time to integrate your knowledge with reality.


24. Favorite mantra? 

Life can only be understood backwards, It will all work out in the end.

25. Shout out to (tag 3 ex-HOs):

Permit me to tag like 5 or 6, biko. My Shout out goes to :

– Dr. Sarah Oloruntoba, 

– Dr. Fortune Kwushue, 

– Dr. Efosa Aimien, 

– Dr. Solomon Anighoro, 

– Dr. Emeka Orji-Udeh 

and of course, 

Dr. Eunice Adeniran. 

Thanks for making my housejob experience fun. I love and miss you all. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜

26. Thank you for sharing your Housejob experience.

It was a pleasure๐Ÿ˜‰

***

Editor’s Note: 

Dr. Deby Okonji, or Debyo as I like to call her, is one of the most inspiring people I know.

A woman on fire, she’s intelligent, diligent and passionate about life. 

She doesn’t believe in watching life from the pews, but ensures she is a part of the race. 

Her charming smile, “out-of-the-box” mindset and leadership skills are her greatest assets. 

Debyo loves God, chicken (fried or roasted) and chocolate cake.

You can follow her on @AshD_O (Twitter) or @docdebyo (IG)

:::requ1ne:::
    

 โค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ

Housejob Chronicles: Memoirs of an Ex-HouseOfficer! (2)

Please read the previous part here
 

***

 1. Can we meet you?

 

I’m Dr Sarah Ifeoluwa Oloruntoba, a graduate of Bowen University  (2017)

 

2. Favorite posting, and why?:

O&G

I enjoyed the morning reviews and working with my senior colleagues. 

They made things so easy despite the fact that I was in a stressful unit as the only House Officer. 

I also had enough time to do other things I wanted to do (like blogging, cooking healthy meals etc)

 

3. Least favorite posting, and why?:

Surgery

 Surgery posting was extremely stressful. 

I didn’t even have the time to go to church and I spent almost everyday  in the hospital. I also didn’t like the fact that I couldn’t really plan my day without any interruption.
4. Best call(s) ever:

The calls I prayed about, telling God the specific number of patients I wanted to see and got my request.

 

5. Worst call ever:

One Gynae emergency call. That night was really eventful.

I was so scared but my chief Dr Sule, was calm and brave all through. 

One lesson I learnt from that call is how to be calm yet brave enough to face my fears and handle situations to the best of my ability while awaiting help. 

 

6. Nicest Chief(s) I worked with:

 Most of my chiefs were actually nice.

However there are some that I will not forget too quickly:

  • O and G posting: Dr Awolumate and Dr Akinro
  • Paediatrics posting: Dr Owa
  • Internal medicine posting: Dr Palma
  • Surgery posting: Dr Aduloju, Dr Ibrahim and Dr Ogoji 

 

7. Most admirable consultant:

Dr Temitope ODI (Consultant Paediatric Surgeon). 

Though I didn’t really know (or work with) him, but the inspirational speech he gave at our sendforth dinner told me a lot about him. An Empathetic Christian doctor who isn’t just out to make money but to make a difference. 

 

8. Most likely specialty, and why?:

Geriatrics. 

I just have this love for elderly people and I feel the way our health system is currently designed doesn’t really suit them 

i.e. the Nigerian healthcare system is NOT old-people friendly. 

Like Children, they have special needs and peculiarities that should be properly addressed. 

Many of these elderly men and women gave their youthful years in one form of service or the other to the nation, therefore they should benefit from good health care.

 

9. Most unlikely specialty, and why not?:

 

Surgery. ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

That posting was too stressful.  Abeg!

And their wahala as a department was just too much (a department of numerous rules and regulations !)

I do love the practical aspect of surgery, but the unfair treatment I saw our senior colleagues (residents) go through was not funny.  I can’t live my life like that jare

 

10. Three life lessons from housejob:

 

i. Be brave enough to face your fears. 

ii. There is a thin line between life and death and as a doctor you may be the one with the pencil that will draw that line or the eraser that will clean it off. 

iii. Build Relationships, nurture them and cherish them.

11. Most embarrassing moment:

I honestly can’t remember any.

 

12. What are you thankful about:

 – God’s faithfulness in bringing to pass the things he said.

– All the people I met, especially all my teachers and colleagues.

– I am specially thankful for the new friends I have now. I didn’t really have a lot of friends before HouseJob but God gave me friends who are now my sisters. Hallelujah!

The 3 Musketeersโค๏ธ


 

13. Longest day ever:

Day ke? Dayssss… My entire SCBU posting!

 

14. Happiest day ever:

The day I saw my Primaries* result.

 

15. Something to miss:

  • The chiefs who were like older siblings to me. Those ones I could have a conversation with conveniently anytime.
  • My darling friends.
  • Weekend trips to Mount Patti (Fitfam Adventureโ˜บ๏ธ)

16. Rate your housejob experience on a scale of 1-5:

4/5 

 

17. Call food: Yay or Nay? 

Indifferent 

 

18. New skills learnt: 

Quite a number. 

 

19. Unforgettable patient

One patient in general surgery who had surgeries up to 3 times, due to complicated perforated typhoid Ileus, I think… Well, she is alive doing well!

There was another woman in Gynae ward who had a cancer. She is now late though.

20. Any regrets? 
None that I can think of.

 

21. Favorite mantra:

This too shall pass.

 
22. Shout out to 3 friends you made during house job: 

(Hian…3 is too small ooo!)

 

Debby– She opened her room to me for the entire period. It means so much to me and I just can’t thank her enough. 

She chose to be my friend and treated me like her sister. I love all the lovely moments we shared together gisting, going out etc

She taught me how to take care of my natural hair, and tried her best to bring me out of my shell ๐Ÿ˜‰

Debby, God bless you dear๐Ÿค—

Deby and I.

 

Eunice– She encouraged me to start my blog the first time I had a conversation with her. 

She is also motherly, caring, and a no-nonsense person. ๐Ÿ˜ฌ


Ifeoluwa Yes, me! ๐Ÿ˜‚ For sticking with me throughout the one year despite all my plenty wahala. For being bold and courageous to take new steps to an amazing new me. 


Baby girl, you’re the best!๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ˜โค๏ธ
 
23. What next after housejob?

 

NYSC, then others as the Lord leads.

 

24. If not Medicine, then what? 
 

Farming, Catering/Baking. (Yes, I’m a foodie๐Ÿ˜…)

25. What’s more important for a House Officer, skill or stuff? 

Both. 

Stuff without skill is useless because the stuff will not transform to an intervention all by itself without appropriate application.

And skill without stuff makes one look like a gambler just trying something just to see if it will work or not, and if it does work, applying it to everyone that comes forgetting that patient care should be individualized. 

26. Thank you for sharing your Housejob experience.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity ๐Ÿ˜€. 

*Primaries: An exam written to enter into the residency program. 
 

***


Editor’s Note:

Dr Sarah (a.k.a Sarah Baby ๐Ÿ˜), is my warm and wise friend-turned-sister, a chef of life and destiny (she can cook for Africa๐Ÿ˜‚), budding blogger and a fellow believer in Christ. 

One of the most inspiring people I met during housejob. I really believe our meeting was not ordinary, God had a hand in it. 

Beneath her calm exterior is a depth with several stories of her journey with God, and an emphasis on his faithfulness and constant love. 

A foodie, lover of God and natural hair enthusiast, she doesn’t just preach her faith, she lives by it. 

Dr. Sarah blogs here.

Thank you for reading!

:::requ1ne:::

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HouseJob Chronicles: 12 Weeks of Paediatrics.

Long before I started housejob, I dreaded Paediatric Posting.

How on earth was I supposed to successfully manage those tiny, weeny, crying, sick babies?

ImageCredit: Dr. S

Thankfully, it wasn’t an entirely terrible experience.

I had some cool days, but there were some really exhausting ones too, that I couldn’t wait for the posting to be over.

So I started with the least busy of the four units in the paediatrics department- Gastroenterology, where I spent the first 4 weeks.

During my last weekend in the unit, I was on a 48 hour call, where I barely shut my eyes. 

To make matters worse, I resumed the Special Care Baby (SCBU) the next morning. It wasn’t a funny experience at all. 

Thank God for correct chiefs and my amazing work-partner, Dr. Vicky, who I worked with for 3 weeks. It was quite a stress-free ride.

SCBU memoirs with Dr. Vicky.

With SCBU babies being so delicate, we had to take extra caution while working, and pay close attention to basic things like handwashing. 

Babies with Severe Perinatal Asphyxia, Prematurity, and Neonatal Jaundice made up the bulk of our admissions.

We also had our share of interesting cases like Noonan’s syndrome, Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, Choanal Atresia and Dextrocardia.

One of my worst SCBU memories was the day we lost a 25 week old preemie. One moment he was alive, the next moment he was gone. No apnea monitoring! 

After my SCBU posting, I resumed Emergency Pediatric Unit (EPU) where I spent 2 weeks

I was glad to take a break from daily ward rounds and scheduled clinics. 

EPU Memoirs

EPU was quite interesting, we had some busy days and some not so busy ones.

My final posting in the department was Haemato-oncology/Neurology unit, where I spent 3 weeks. 

That was my worst nightmare, because I experienced the Father of all stress. 

It was so demanding that I felt as though I was repeating my surgery posting all over.

From having two separate clinics weekly, to preparing for Consultant and SR rounds, unit presentations, and taking routine calls, my energy levels were depleted on a daily basis. 

My chiefs were super meticulous and expected 100% efficiency, so I worked like a zombie

I’d never felt so out of sync in my entire housejob experience. 

I’ll forever be grateful to SPO and other friends, who served as a support network during those hard times. Those memories will remain a treasure.

Pediatrics is a great field to specialize in and I admire the courage of my senior colleagues who have chosen that path.

For me, it’s a No, No! 

And that brings me to the end of my housejob sojourn.

I still have a few more posts to wrap up the Housejob Chronicles, so please watch this space.

Long live the Hippocratic Oath!

Long live F.M.C Lokoja!!

Long live Nigeria!!!

-To God Be The Glory-

:::Requ1ne:::

Housejob Chronicles: Dear House Officer On Call.

One interesting yet often stressful aspect of housejob, is being on call.

To be on call simply means that on week days, you’re on duty from evening (4pm) till the next morning (8 am) while on weekends (or PUBLIC holidays), you’re on duty from 8 a.m to 8 a.m the next day (24 hours).

As the house officer on call, you’re the doctor-in-charge of all newly admitted patients, as well as other patients on your ward that may have one complain or the other.

In most hospitals, the house officer works with a registrar and a senior registrar.

The houseofficer is the 1st on call, the reg is 2nd on call, the senior reg is 3rd on call, while the consultant is 4th on call.

As a newbie house officer, you may find your first few calls a little overwhelming. 

In this post, I’ll be sharing a few guidelines to help you maximize your call period.

Enjoy!
***

1. Sleep while you can, you’ll be glad you did.
Sleep is important for a person to function optimally and doctors are no exception.

Because call hours are so unpredictable, it’s necessary to grab any opportunity you have to sleep, so that you can function relatively well the next day. 

Unlike nurses who run shifts, you have to resume work by 8 am like your other colleagues who were not on call.

2. Be prepared, for everything and for anything.
From a multiparous woman with PPH, to a 10-day old baby running a temperature of 40c.

Each Call is pretty unpredictable. Be PREPARED.

3. Maximize your time and energy.
Don’t waste time chatting on social media or with colleagues when you should be working or resting. 

As you lay your bed, so you lie on it. Every minute counts.

4. Don’t just work HARD, work SMART.
Not everything that is URGENT is important and vice-versa. 

Your seniors will be like:
Get that consent form signed NOW! 

Collect the blood sample NOW!! 

Check the blood pressure NOW!!!

You have to learn how to prioritize and apply common sense.

Make sure you do all you’re supposed to do but don’t allow anyone to place unnecessary PRESSURE on you.

5. Pay the price.

Medicine is a journey and the journey is worth it. It will stretch you, but it won’t tear you apart.

To your knowledge, add passion, to your passion add skill, to your skill, add diligence and to your diligence add empathy.

#ScrubShoesSelfie
 

If you pay the price, you’ll get the prize. 

Personal fulfillment. 

Job satisfaction. 

Gratitude from your patients and their relatives.

Don’t be that lazy houseofficer who just wants to get paid without doing much. 

In the longrun, Hard work pays!

6. Give your best no matter what.
You can be short on sleep or food but you don’t have to be short-tempered.

Sometimes all your patients need is REASSURANCE. 

Be kind. Be cheerful.

The patient didn’t ask to be sick, but you chose this profession.

7. Have Some Coping mechanisms.

You can read this post I wrote about my coping mechanisms for house job.  

The call food at our center can be so annoying, so being on call gives me an opportunity to binge on all kinds of small treats. Chocolates. Coconut chips. Biscuits. And lots and lots of soda! ๐Ÿ˜‚

.

Selfie at work

 

So find a way to make your call fun, aside work. Listen to some music. Read a novel. Take selfies. Whatever rocks your boat!

8. It’s NOT a must that you do every call.
Sometimes life happens and you don’t have the will-power, physical stamina or you’re just being lazy, it doesn’t matter.

You can trade your call or better still, sell it *winks* just because you CANNOT come and die.

My goal at the end of every call is to have a THANKFUL Soul and a JOYFUL Spirit, no matter how TIRED my body is.

Medicine is a Call-To-Serve and I’m grateful for this PRIVILEGE, because that’s what it really is.

Squaddiesโค๏ธ
Cheers!

:::requ1ne:::

HouseJob Chronicles: 5 Ways NOT To Take Things Personal.

Hello People,

I had an experience at work the other day, interesting in retrospect, but very emotional for me at the time. I was hurt by some stuff one of my “Ogas at the top” said, and I ended in tears.

It was so embarrassing…long story short, I came out of the experience a better me.

In this post, I’d like to share a few tips with you about how NOT to take things personal as a House Officer, especially if you work (or plan to work) in Nigeria.

Enjoy!

***

1. Offenses will come.
Offenses are a part of life we all can’t do without. On a daily basis, we offend people and people offend us.

Unfortunately, even in the work-environment where everyone is expected to be cordial, people step on one another’s toes all the time.

As a House Officer, patients will annoy you, your colleagues will make you angry, and your seniors will frustrate you.

The way some patients view medical interns…๐Ÿ™„

Sadly, a lot of Nigerian doctors still see BULLYING as a necessary evil, and unless there’s a change in such mindset, House Officers will continue to be at the receiving end.

It’s in your own best interest to develop a thick skin against such scenarios, because they will surely come.

2. Keep Moving On.
No matter how bad a day seems, that day will pass.

Days will turn into weeks, weeks into months, and before you know it, your housejob experience is over.

If you want to survive as a House Officer unscathed, learn to move on quickly!

3. Be Considerate.
Eventually, what goes around comes around.

As a newbie doctor, maybe it’s time to change the narrative.

Be the difference you want to see.

To your patients show empathy. You have no idea what some of them are passing through.

To your colleagues show comradeship. You’re together in the struggle.

To your seniors show loyalty. They were once in your shoes.

It takes a little kindness to make a BIG difference.

In all, do your best and give the quality of care, treatment and respect you want others to give you.

4. Know your elastic limit.

When all is said and done, it is NOT every nonsense that you should allow.

I’m yet to walk out of a ward round, because God has REALLY helped me.

And I hope the day never comes because if it so happens…hehe

Like I say to anyone who cares to listen, I’m the only doctor in my family…I cannot come and die.

For your own sanity, speak up when you MUST.

If a colleague wants to take advantage of you, call such person to order.
If a patient tries to disrespect you, set him/her straight.
And if your seniors verbally or physically abuse you, to an extent that is unhealthy to your self-esteem, please report them to the appropriate quarters.

You’re a doctor, not a door-mat!

5. Laugh out Loud
When all is said and done, someone may just be having a bad day and looking for a channel to vent.

DO NOT become the scapegoat.

Try to to give your best at ALL times. Be timely. Be proactive. Don’t be lazy. Don’t be rude. Know your limits.

Refuse to be a casualty in another person’s mood instability.

And when you’ve done all you can, and someone still wants to make you angry or sad, just LAUGH OUT LOUD.

Image Credit: iStock
Laugh so hard that it confuses your “Tormentor.”

A little humor can really go a long way!

Remember, you’re STRONGER than you think.

Source: WEB

For me, whenever I start to feel overwhelmed by the sheer stress of the job, the Holyspirit gently reminds me that…

So I don’t complain, I give thanks.

***

I screen grabbed this from a friend’s status the other day. Truly this job Issa calling! 

Last, last, all of us will be ALRIGHT. 

….
Cheers!

:::requ1ne:::

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HouseJob Chronicles: An Internal Medicine Resident’s Profile

My passion keeps me going. I remind myself that I signed up for this business of saving lives and that things will not always be bad. For every patient we lose, many more are saved.

– Dr. Dennis Palma

Q1. Why Internal Medicine?

Dr. Palma: Well, it started with my medical school experience. Internal Medicine was my first posting. I admired the team work among the doctors. I also liked the way they applied their knowledge to make the correct diagnosis.

In my work as a medical officer, following my service year (NYSC), I found the motivation from my senior colleagues very helpful.
Although O and G was also a specialty of interest, I signed up for Internal Medicine as soon as there was a reaidency opening.

Q2. What does a fulfilled day look like for you?

Dr. Palma: A fulfilled day for me, means that I have contributed immensely to patient care, especially those in life threatening conditions.


http://www.eunicesmiles.wordpress.com


Q3. What keeps you going on tough days?

Dr. Palma: My passion keeps me going. I remind myself that I signed up for this business of saving lives and that things will not always be bad. For every patient we lose, many more are saved.

Q4. Do you have a favorite mantra? Please share. 

Dr. Palma: If you wait for things to happen nothing will happen.” You have to be proactive in life to get anything you want.


Q5. What’s the most life-changing lesson you’ve learnt as a doctor?

Dr. Palma: Several. A particular lesson that comes to mind is to show more empathy towards patients and their relatives.
When my dad passed on at a teaching hospital some years back, I was able to understand how patient’s relatives are treated, the physical and psychological stress, the impolite and condescending attitude from health workers, and the enormous financial implications of healthcare.


Q6. If not medicine, what?

Dr. Palma: I wanted to be a medical doctor from childhood.
At some point in secondary school, I considered Engineering because most of my classmates wanted either Medicine or Engineering but becoming a doctor was a dream come true.

Q7. What are your favorite activities outside work?

Dr. Palma: I enjoy watching football and hanging out with friends. I also enjoy movies and reading novels.


http://www.eunicesmiles.wordpress.com


Q8. How do you keep your work-life balance?

Dr. Palma: There is no balance at the moment. Work takes a large aspect of my time, even my weekends are not entirely free.

Still I try to keep in touch with a few friends outside the medical circle.

Q9. What are the attributes of a good doctor?

Dr Palma: A good doctor should have a good relationship with other members of the healthcare team. He should be humble because a lot of responsibility is demanded of him. A good doctor should be able to convert medical knowledge into practice and learn to show empathy towards patients.

Q10. What advice will you give to a Naija House Officer?

Dr. Palma: Learn all you can from your senior colleagues and show them respect. The more you know, the more outstanding you’ll be. It’s important to have a professional goal at the start of your career and work towards it. Show empathy towards patients. When all is said and done, it’s all about the patient. 

***

Dr. Dennis Palma, is a graduate of University of Maiduguri Medical School. He’s presently a Senior Resident at Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja, and is interested in Endocrinology.

Cheers!

:::requ1ne:::

โค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ

HouseJob Chronicles: The Journey So Far!

So yours truly is half-way done with this housejob thing. Yay!

Throwback to my Med school graduation shoot

I recently completed my second posting: INTERNAL MEDICINE.

Let’s just say the posting was more of presentations and the likes, than anything else. 

Internal medicine doctors like to brag about their “stuff”, unlike the surgeons who love “action” and just want to get a knife under your skin. To their credit, the internists seem to spend more bedside time with their patients.

The longest ward round of my life (about 5 hours) was during my internal medicine rotation and it was not funny. 

Photo credit: WEB
 

I spent my entire posting in the Endocrinology unit where about 90% of our patients had diabetes. 

Some Diabetic cases were really bad especially those complicated with Diabetic Foot Syndrome (DMFS) and we lost a number of them, sadly. 

Still there were more successes than defeats and for that I’m thankful.

The importance of patient education and regular health checks cannot be overemphasized because without those complications, Diabetes is pretty manageable. 

I’m especially thankful that God kept me through those 12 weeks of ward rounds, emergency room calls and outpatient clinic activities. I had some tough days as well as a few long nights. 

I’m glad I was able to make friends with my colleagues, seniors, nurses and even a few patients. The Unit Consultants and Residents were also kind and helpful.

I’m especially thankful for my unit partner, Dr. M. He made my life easier in so many ways and he took the bulk of the work on days when the unit was really busy. He really deserves some accolades๐Ÿ˜‚

L-R: Dr. M, myself, Dr. Tony, Dr. Esther (in front), Dr. Palma (behind), Dr. Eugene and Dr. Nonso.

I’ve since resumed a new posting (Obstetrics/Gynecology), and I’m gonna be seeing lots of preggos and cute newborns  over the next couple of  weeks.

Unfortunately, more than half of the hospital staff are currently on a National strike (that excludes doctors), so I’m yet to do some of the cool things I’ve heard about like taking deliveries or repairing episiotomies. 

Tbh…can’t wait for the strike to be over (the holiday is enough). Learning is still important to me, abeg.

Here are some of the highlights of my Housejob experience:

1. Being called a Doctor

It does feel good to be officially addressed as a doctor. I know I feel entitled but who wouldn’t?

After the stress of medical school and MDCN licensing exam, I know I paid my dues so I deserve some accolades sorry, the title๐Ÿ˜‰

With Dr. Tony

So it’s kinda annoying when that random patient or patient’s relative refers to me as a nurse. Maka gini?

I know it’s not a crime to be called a nurse but I think it’s an identity theft, to answer to a title that is false ๐Ÿ˜‰

On days when I have the strength, I sharply correct such erring individuals, while on other days I just roll my eyes and let it slide.

2. Call food struggle 

You know how many Nigerians love awoof (free things)? Let’s just say that the doctors are no exception. 

Although our call food is not exactly free, since a monthly deduction is made from our salaries, still it feels good to have ready-to-eat meals at work.

And don’t let it surprise you that we sometimes go for extra helpings and even lobby for call food on days when we are not on call…because doctors love food like that.

A couple of times, the taste of the food can be so disappointing (more like crappy), still we try to make the most use of it.
I’d rather go for my own home cooked meal than call food any day, but on days when I don’t have a choice, I’m thankful for call food. 

3. Patients who L.A.M.A

To L.A.M.A is to Leave Against Medical Advice 

This has be to one of my favorite scenarios as a house officer. 

I know it sounds selfish but it simply means there’s one less patient to worry about. 

Medical ethics emphasizes a patient’s power of autonomy, in other words, no doctor can force a patient to make any decision concerning his/her health. 

As doctors we are trained to assess the benefit to risk ratio of our treatment plan, and only go ahead if the benefit outweighs the risk. 

In a situation where patients (or their relatives), refuse a particular treatment due to financial incapacity, religious/cultural beliefs or preference for alternative care, they are allowed to leave against medical advice.

In one of my Consultant’s words, “The hospital is not a prison yard and we can’t force you to get treated.”

Occasionally, some patients who L.A.M.A eventually return in worse condition. It’s very tempting to send them away, but as doctors we have no choice but to treat them anyway.

4. ER Memoirs

The Emergency room is one of the toughest places for a doctor to be in, especially during call hours. Call hours usually last from 4 p.m. till 8 a.m. the next day.

The experience ranges from days of having a sleep-over (like no patient to disturb you all night) to days of little or no sleep. 

Photo credit: WEB

One of the worst scenarios is to be told to prepare an unstable patient for an emergency surgery around 2 a.m., another scenario is having to monitor glucose levels, for a diabetic patient in Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar State (HHS) every hour.
In such scenarios you can’t help but philosophize:

Tough times never last, but tough people do.” Robert Schuller.

Count yourself lucky if you are able to catch a wink before morning, because you’re mandated to be on your feet again, running errands till closing hours. 

Still we don’t COMPLAIN, we give thanks.

5. Patients’ stories 

If we look past the sick faces, investigation results, the diagnosis, the prognosis, and all other medical jargon, we realize that there is more to our patients than meets the eye.

That patient who just had a cholecystectomy is someone’s husband, father, brother, uncle, boss or mentor. 

The lady who was just diagnosed with diabetes is someone’s daughter, neighbor, student or friend.

I’ve heard all sort of stories that break my heart and many times I wonder why God allows some people to pass through so much pain.

I once had a patient who was involved in a nearly fatal road traffic accident, in which she broke a leg, a few weeks to her wedding. Thankfully she survived the ordeal, but her life was never the same again. 

Another patient, a father of three, struggling to make ends meet, was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease and had to be placed on regular hemodialysis. How the family could even afford the treatment remains a mystery to me.

Life seems to momentarily stand still when sickness comes knocking, but the truth is there’s so much going on behind the scenes. 

A diagnosis is enough to change the course of a person’s life and only faith in God that can keep such a person going. 

Miracles do happen. And I’ve seen a number of them. 

I believe as doctors, we will show more empathy if we routinely put ourselves in our patients’ shoes. 

So help us God.

***

– call food: the food served when a doctor is on call duty.

Cheers,
:::requ1ne:::

     โค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ