He is one of the most devoted public servants in the Orota Referral Hospital; he is a doctor. Dr. Bereket Gebremichael loves his job and the people that come for his assistance. He is always willing to stay and take care of his patients even over time. He was born in 1988 in Adi Quala, joined the 2Oth round to Sawa. He enrolled in the Orota School of Medicine to make his dream come true, followed by two years of pre Medical practices, more for GP and more for Dentistry… and he finally graduated in 2016!
Since then he has been serving in different wards of the hospital: the department of internal health, pediatric ward and now in the maternity ward. We are pleased to introduce you to yet another young Eritrean making a difference!
- Thank you for being with us Dr.! Let’s start with a short introduction of your background.
My childhood was not any different from that of the majority of my peers; I come from a middle class family, so I led a very ordinary life when I was young. Since day one of school I’ve had the support and guidance of my older siblings and my parents; and especially my father as he was a teacher. I am also very grateful to my mother, she did her best to assist my educational endeavor.
- People who studied with you told us that you were a prize winner all the way through. You never ever missed the first place, did you?
Hardly. Actually, I was attentive and committed towards my education because I had a strong formation since a young age. Thanks to my parents and siblings I knew I had to be an outstanding student at all costs. But, to speak the truth, it was only 8th grade that I started studying independently without my family’s watch. I then started looking for books pertinent to my education, and I would normally spend hours going through them. It was a magical method for the young me, as it opened my horizon. I loved having so much material to rely on, to broaden my knowledge. Every day after school I would go home and revise everything I learned in a day. And in class I was extremely attentive. In few words, I hated wasting my time. I was happy to be busy with school work. After that, I started getting the famous ‘unit prize’; it meant first place in your class and also in all sections of the same grade!
My next step was Sawa. I joined the 20th round to Sawa and took in the high school leaving matriculation. And there, I was not first place winner anymore. I had studied hard with a conviction of scoring 4.0 but I finished with 3.6. Not what I had expected but very satisfactory as it got me to med school!
So, in few words, being a good student for me meant being devoted to your studies. There were times when I scored high and sometimes not. For me being a dedicated student, at school was mandatory. The merit goes to my family. They were literally my ‘strong base’.
- So you suggest that parental guidance is vital for a student?
Are you joking?! Of course! I was blessed to have my family’s guidance but some others were not. Luckily our society’s awareness of education is high, so everyone in our society contributes to our students’ educational undertakings. Even illiterate parents know that education is important and they do everything in their might to help their children. Everyone contributes: teachers, friends, neighbors… In our community it is rare that you listen of parents’ lack of interest in their children education, but to answer your question, yes parental guidance is the earliest ingredient in the formation of successful students.
- Back to med school. Did you always want to study medicine? How did you get to med school?
Medicine is a profession that gives spiritual satisfaction. Being able to heal and see people get better is just a reward that is beyond explanation. Moreover, the work atmosphere is of sympathy; my colleagues and I help each other and we understand each other. I knew I would eventually enjoy my profession. So I studied med and went for it.
- Was med school challenging?
I got in the medical school because I wanted to follow my dream. And yes, studying for that long was challenging. Med school is very intense. The field requires full attention and relentless dedication day and night. It becomes harder in time. You should avoid the stress of excessive studying. So I was participating in various sport activities and reading books during my free time. I found it helpful.
- You also have the love for poetry?
Well, I try. It gives me great joy to express my ideas through poetry.
- How hard is your career considering you are just 27 years old?
It is not about the age, it is about giving a 100% of commitment and dedication to your career.
- We guess professional discipline is critical for your career?
Well, having the right manners is as important for every profession. However, since the medical field is related to saving lives I would say you just cannot be careless as you please. For instance, a life can be lost due to negligence. Also, it is important to have the right etiquette when talking to a patient. It is said that a patient is half cured if he sees a smiley and friendly face of a doctor, and I think it is true.
- Let’s talk about the oath that is taken at the graduation; how practical is it?
This is a hard question, honesty. I cannot say that it is applied fully but I can certainly say that anyone in the medical field is obliged to be guided by the oath.
- You are now one of the doctors In the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics. What can you say about the department?
Our society has become more aware of the problems faced during delivery, thanks to the different campaigns present nationwide. This has shown a great result in reducing the problems mothers and children were facing. But of course there are few causalities. Some people come to the hospital late.
- In which departments of the hospital have you served as a doctor so far?
I was in the Internal Illness Department for two months, Surgical Department for five months, Pediatric Department for six months and currently in the Gynecology and Obstetrics department.
- Do you have other hobbies?
I am a sportsperson, I love to play volleyball and chess besides reading books.
- Your siblings are also successful in school?
We are eight in number, out of which 6 have graduated in different fields. I have a sister in Sawa getting ready to take her Matriculation exams and another one in 10th grade.
- Your future plans?
I would like to work harder to contribute more in my field. Small efforts make noticeable changes. Also I have a plan to get married and start a family soon.
- Congratulations for that! We’ll be happy for you. Anything you want to say at last?
Yes, I want to thank my family for all their support. I wouldn’t be here without them. Last but not least I would like to extent my gratitude to all of my teachers, starting from the elementary schools upto college. Of course tons of greetings to the Eritrean people for providing free and viable education for all and our government for providing us free education.