Akshita Gupta, a final year Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) student, from the Fiji National University’s (FNU’s) College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences (CMNHS), recently completed a four-week elective at the General Surgery Department of University Hospital Geelong via the Deakin University (DU).

Gupta, a pioneering FNU student to complete her elective at DU, further strengthened the association between the two Universities.

She said she gained a lot of knowledge and hands-on experience from working with “some of the best” practitioners in Australia.

“My experience at DU was really good and quite different,” the ecstatic Trainee Intern said.

“They have specialised teams for different parts of the body and everything happened very fast.”

According to Gupta, she also learnt to enjoy her work despite the long working hours.

“They showed me how to enjoy the exhaustion and how to take satisfaction from every little find that you made that helped come to a diagnosis,” said the final year medical student.

“That distinction will only help me to become better.”

Gupta has dedicated her successes to her mother, brother and all the lecturers from the College, who have helped her become a passionate medical student.

However, she added that nothing comes easy and she: “chose not to have a social life and spent an extra three to four hours at the hospital after everyone had gone, to further enhance theoretical learnings”.

Meanwhile, Sonal Nagra, now a Senior Lecturer in Rural General Surgery at DU, said Gupta was no doubt a bright medical student who actively engaged in all opportunities given to her.

Nagra, also a CMNHS alumni, had completed his MBBS from the College in 2005 before completing his Master of Medicine in Surgery in 2012.

“She (Gupta) took up challenges willingly and demonstrated a sound medical background, which is a credit to her education at the Fiji (National) University and her supervisors,” the former Masters Gold Medal Award recipient said.

“She was punctual, polite and a great team player.  Our junior medical team found her a pleasure to work with and considered her an asset to the surgical unit.” 

The Consultant Surgeon, highlighted Gupta was given the opportunity to attend:

1. Daily ward rounds and present cases at weekly grand rounds;

2. Two clinics per weeks;

3. Daily operating sessions;

4. Participate in on call duties/Clerk admissions; and

5. Weekly teaching sessions 

“We also managed to give Akshita (Gupta) the opportunity to participate in research activities in the department and also gave her exposure to Epworth Private Hospital where she witnessed a robotic case,” Nagra said.  

“We sincerely enjoyed the opportunity to strengthen our ties with the Fiji National University and look forward to further such exchange students.”


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