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Doctor’s Profile: Felix Ouma

I lost my dad to pneumonia, months later after the funeral, the hard question asked by many patients up to date set my journey to clinical medicine.I kept asking mum”What was dad’s diagnosis and how could this lead to his demise? Every time I visited the dispensary my diagnosis was ever malaria since it’s endemic and responded to the treatment initiated.

But why is the former soo lethal than the latter? Or was it only preserved for the hospitals? I got no answer but anxiety.

Name: Mr.Felix Ouma Goga

Occupation: Clinical officer

Speciality provider: Emergency and Critical care medicine

Place of work: Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital.

Esther: Thank you so much Felix for finding time for this interview. We really appreciate the effort you’re putting in providing healthcare services to your patients.

Felix at his workplace

Early life and education background

Felix:
My name is Mr.Felix Ouma Goga, an Emergency and Critical care clinical officer.I was born and raised from a humble background in Homa Bay county.

I attended Omboga primary school, later joined Oriwo Boys High School for secondary education, joined KMTC-Siaya for basic diploma in clinical medicine surgery and community health and further advanced in  Emergency and Critical care medicine higher national diploma at KMTC-Nairobi.

My motivation

Felix:
Just like in an airline industry’s fatal accidents, my father’s death was the game changer. The diagnosis of pneumonia at his death bed and a series of an answered questions of why and how led me to this field.

Esther:
I’m so sorry for your loss. Why did you choose clinical medicine but not sonography or pharmacy?

Felix:
Thanks, I’ve appreciated your message of condolence. I personally find it the only ever rewarding field.I’m not talking about good renumeration. The elderly hypertensive and asthmatic getting relief and saying thanks and God Bless you, the toddler getting back to the playground upon stopping convulsions. The bodaboda rider getting back to work upon fixing his fracture and the painful lesson of death, hey you need to pull up your socks!

Esther:
Have you tested your motivation?

Felix:
Yes, I do receive positive responses from colleagues, students and clients. Plus this phrase “If it’s not for the patient it’s useless.”

Esther:
What an amazing phrase! If you were not accepted in medical school, would you have an alternative career plan and still pursue your motivation?

Felix:
Yes there is always a plan B which was the dream of becoming an engineer, suppose I missed the intake at KMTC. Fortunately, I had both invitation letters.

Visualising my medical education

Felix:
I don’t regret being a clinician, majority have benefited from my skills, to name but a few the hospital fraternity, students rotating in the department, colleagues and patients too.

Esther:
That’s an amazing job you’re doing there, Congratulations! Which other field would you want to pursue and why?

Felix:
Thanks a lot for your appreciation!

As mentioned earlier, engineering was plan B especially aeronautical engineering.Another rewarding field but not as medical field.

Family support and influence

Felix:
Family will always be at the apex, a special gift from God. Were it not for the decent family then there would be no reason for such career paths. Now balancing both stress at work and at home is challenging, remember it’s a calling plus an oath to take care of the sick, on the other hand It’s purely a full time responsibility. For instance, you can leave work and attend to an urgent matter at home while at some point duty can call at anytime to attend to the families in need.

Felix with his young family

Esther:
That’s such a selfless life! What do you do for fun?

Felix:
I love making fun and slow cool music.

Esther:
What role has your family played in influencing you to practice medicine?

Felix:
My family members all gave me moral, spiritual, emotional and financial support with the big chunk contributed by my mum.

Medical achievements

Felix:
I have earned a few accreditations from online, offline sessions and presentation in conferences.

Medicine in General

Esther:
What are the experiences working with the sick?

Felix
I’ll go for both sides of the coin, I earn heavily when the patient walks back home from the sick bed, and learn bitterly when I loose the patient.

Esther:
What excites you about medicine?

Felix:
It’s fun to practice what you know and disgusting while fumbling with what is not yours.

Esther:
Do you keep yourself updated with current trends?

Felix:
Of course, the world is so dynamic, every publication changes every second, hence there’s need to keep updated.

Future of Medicine

Esther:
What do you see as challenges in the health sector in Kenya today?

Felix:
(a)Limited health care workers Vs unlimited health care needs.

(b)Insufficient funding.

(c) Limited research.

(d)Poor infrastructure development.

(e)Rising discrimination of other health carders in the workforce.

(f) Unaffordable rising cost of health care.

Esther:
How do you think these challenges should be addressed?

Felix:

(a)Training and deployment should match the needs.

(b&c) There’s urgent need for proper funding through the government and donors to aid even in research.

(d) Proper infrastructure development that matches the needs of the population.

(e) Development of healthy policies and strict adherence to the rule of law to curb discrimination and corruption.

(f) Initiation of favourable policies and insurance for the poor to afford healthcare. 

Esther:
What’s the vision of health care in Kenya and East Africa?

Felix:
It has along way to go though it’s kicked off both home and away.There is some flickering lights at the tunnel end.Various stakeholders including the government and churches have started remodelling healthcare.

A few milestones archived are; Kenya has been on the forefront in battling renal disorders, Uganda has gone far in oncology while Tanzania is at the peak with cardiovascular disorders.

Esther:
Thank you for your time Felix.

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