A career in medicine is a challenge sometimes leading to second guessing. On 18 October, King’s had two influential speakers reveal their personal experience on where the path can lead. The event was hosted at Guy’s Campus, and was organised by the GKT Medical Students’ Association.
Adam Kay, a registrar turned comedian spoke at Greenwood Lecture Theatre about how crucial it is to choose a specialization carefully.
“Every medical specialty has a sin wave”, he said. Being responsible for lives of other humans sets the stakes very high. These change from dermatologists to A&E, with “higher highs bringing lower lows”.
In medicine, things can go terribly wrong. To obstetricians, a disaster is said to happen every seven or eight years. In case of a tragic outcome, Kay claimed the mental support for doctors is largely neglected, despite the fact their stability is tried in the most serious of situations.
For him, one unfortunate experience was more than enough to cope with. He decided to end his career after mistakingly ending the life of an unborn child.
“I can’t go through this again”.
The second guest, Dr Leila Frodsham remains in healthcare until now. While working in womens’ health, a tragedy with one of the patients caused her to take time off and change hospitals. Facing critique of general public and newspapers, she used to hide her name badge walking around to prevent people in hospital from recognising and judging her.
Tackling all this proved incredibly difficult, especially with the lack of care for doctors themselves from health institutions.
However, she later found her ‘niche’, the perfect ‘sin wave’ in specialising in psychosexual medicine. She now leads one of the fifth-year modules and has received awards for her teaching accomplishments.
“Doctors, speak to your colleagues”, Dr Frodsham advises.
Both speakers emphasised peer support plays a vital role in the question whether to stay or leave. Making sure the people who are paid to care are taken care of too will, ultimately, have a huge say in their future undertaking.