Hey People! On Thursday I was an invited moderator at the Federation of Medical Student’s Association General Assembly & Scientific Conference and it was an amazing experience! But let’s rewind back a little, I got the email requesting my presence at the conference and I was like “How will I do this? What if I’m on call?” But my God made a way and I was favoured by my superiors – Glory be to God!
Right so let’s get stuck in shall we? I got to Ibadan early in the morning as I set off from Lagos as early as 6am haha. Upon arrival at the University of Ibadan’s International Conference Centre (ICC) I met my darling Yinka Fakorede who practically took care of me the whole day (thank you princess!).
As I arrived, Dr. Luther-King Fasehun was giving a keynote speech for The Wellbeing Foundation Africa, and he spoke on the social determinants of health, emphasizing that we, as a continent, need to go back to the basics. We can’t be trying to build on invisible foundations, we need to secure our grounds in family planning to prevent excessive population expansions beyond the capacity of our governments. We need to have primary health care systems that are thoroughly equipped with the essential medicines for common diseases, we need to have strengthened education systems that churn out thoroughly educated people with the skills to take up gainful employment – and avoid getting looped into social vices that lead into ill health (smoking, excessive drinking of alcohol etc.).
Right after this, I was warmly introduced to moderate the panel titled – Medical Education: Curriculum, Research Inclusion and Mentorship. The honourable members of my panel were Professor Ogunbiyi, who has been working as a lecturer in the University of Ibadan for close to 3 decades and is the current head of Medical Education Department at the university. Next was Professor Owolabi, the Dean of Clinical Sciences, University College Hospital, Ibadan and our keynote speaker was Dr. Elsie Kiguli-Malwadde, from Uganda, who is the Director of Health Workforce Education and Development at the African Center for Global Health and Social Transformation (ACHEST).
The panel was highly interactive; each speaker being a specialist in the topic, gave cogent responses to my questions, some of which were: what are their thoughts on the medical curricula in Africa presently, and what changes should be made. Professor Ogunbiyi spoke extensively on the overhaul of the medical curricula at UCH, citing that the closed marking system of old had been done away with and now medical students can actually achieve 100% in a test/exam; the cap has been removed – to which the audience applauded, s such a practice is still wished for in many other schools across Africa.
I really enjoyed moderating the session and took the opportunity to share my own tidbits of experience along the way, afterwards we opened the floor for questions and were flooded! I had 17 people come up to ask a number of questions each – and it would have been more had the ushers not stepped in due to time constraints! I had to ask the audience if they were okay with us going over the time in order to take questions and I got a resounding positive response – it was a very charged session indeed.
After the panel session I listened to the oral presentation of some research papers done by students across Africa and I particularly took interest in Eunice Olusoji’s presentation “Preferences of choice of specialty among Final Year Medical Students of the University of Ibadan” which was a study that revealed the exponential rate of the ongoing “brain drain” of medical doctors. This had been earlier itemized during Dr. Elsie Kiguli-Malwadde’s keynote where University of Ibadan was shown to have the highest number of medical graduates leaving the country for greener pastures among the over 20 medical schools across Africa that were included in the study!
I also really liked Ahmed Eljack’s presentation on neuroscience – as he started it by asking the audience to stand up and stretch our hands out, then connected that exercise to the neurology behind that action – it was engaging and he certainly had our attention; we medics are geeks at heart after all haha.
After this, we went for lunch and I got to see my good friend Ebi Ashidi as he stopped by to say hello 😀
And I met up with my old classmates from A-levels at Lifeforte High, who are now fresh medical graduates!
All smiles (L-R): Temi, ETP, Ona, Progress & Eni ❤️
I also was opportune to support the Well Being Foundation Africa’s Workshop titled: Emergency Obstetric and Newborn care/WASH where a consultant gynecologist taught the participants how to use a partograph and it’s importance in managing deliveries.
What really got to me throughout this conference was how many people came up to me to have conversations! So many people would flock around me once a break was given by the organizers and they really touched my heart with their words; to everyone that reads this blog and has been positively influenced in one way or another, thank you for trusting me and taking my advice via my articles, it means the world to me that my musings are bringing forth such positive fruits in people!
In true ETP style – here are a whole bunch of photosssss for you to peruse!
Receiving an award with Dr. Luther-Fasehun on behalf of the Wellbeing Foundation Africa.
Fun times with Gladys & the FAMSA GA 2018 placards!
With my good friend Temi, a speaker on the NCD Panel a few days before I arrived!
With Victor D. O. A frequent featured writer on this very blog! Was glad to meet him in person after all this time.
With Afrah Mohammed, she was pure joy to meet in person
Toyosi came up to me almost immediately after the first break was announced and warmed my heart with her comments on this blog, she’s a regular reader❤️
With my University of Ilorin darlings ❤️
Bolu is an absolute sweetheart and avid reader of this blog, was great to see her again after a long while ❤️
Finally met IK Ebengho aka the push behind Pendical.com, a blog I love to read!
With the Beautiful Judith Ebengho ❤️
With Dr. Bamdayo! Made me laugh a lot haha
With Tofunmi Omiye, my virtual turned real friend that has been making waves! This is someone that maximizes his studentship.
With the Bowen Family (L-R): Gbenro, Esther, ETP, Ope, Yinka ❤️
Received so many kind tweets! Was so
With the ABUAD Family (L-R): Ibidabo, ETP, Abbey & Abdul (Nifemsimi was missing when this was being taken lol)
With the current president of the ABUAD Medical Students Association, Armstrong ❤️
With Bolu Aderounmu, one of the key members of the Organizing Committee; I’m so proud of him and his entire team’s performance, the conference was spectacularly planned.
Prophesying into my future with this photo 😉
Thank you FAMSA ❤️
One of the countries I call home 🇬🇧
All in all, it was an amazing experience that I didn’t want to end haha.
Till next time,