Sadaf Nasir-Senior Resident ICU
I live in Karachi.
An insight on your profession:
I am a Senior Resident at the Intensive Care Unit at Ziauddin Hospital which is a tertiary care hospital. This department deals with the most critical patients that come to the hospital. I am responsible for making the tough decisions regarding the patients care when it comes to their treatment plan, as there are many things to be considered when dealing with life and death. No patient is the same and every case needs its own assessment. I supervise the daily care of the patients when I conduct rounds with consultants and give orders to the junior doctors once we have assessed a patient and come up with a treatment plan or made any headway in recovery.
What has been your drive?
My drive would always be being able to say I have a respectable job, that I am financially independent and that I have had a satisfying career. Once you make a commitment to medicine, you have to give it 110% and can never let go of your determination to keep going. Seeing death can be demoralizing but its one of the things that comes with this profession and pales in comparison to the feeling when you save a life.
How long have you been in this profession?
I officially graduated and began working in 2002. So I have been in this profession for around 13 years now.
What has been your vision and what do you most love about your career.
Since I deal with critical care, I see death everyday; many times, it is more than once. The thing I love is seeing a patient make progress and responds well to treatment, which leads to a full recovery. That is my motivation. It is the most satisfying feeling knowing you have a made a difference and saved a life. I want people to appreciate their life and their health, which unfortunately a lot of us do not do. We get lots of senior citizens and people under the age of 30. It saddens me when someone revisits the hospital due to lack of care and it could be too late.
What do you think is your biggest achievement throughout your professional journey?
I think my biggest personal achievement would be reaching this point in my life where I can manage my life at home and balance it with work, which takes a great amount of effort especially in medicine. I'm both a mother and an established doctor as I've been able to occupy a position in a field where the seniors are predominantly male. I have gained respect amongst my peers for being a competent doctor.
What are your current projects and what will you be doing in near future?
I've completed my post graduation and cleared the exams I need to practice medicine at this level. As doctors, we are always busy with CME programs(Continuing Medical Education) which we use to learn the safest and most effective ways to treat our patients as every year research brings us new methods and provides better treatment options. I hope to further my career and continue to strive.
A word of advice you would like to pass on to women of Pakistan who look up to aspiring professionals like you. (Think of it as an advice to somebody who wishes to pursue the same career as you)
If you're going to be a doctor, you'll have to learn patience and sincerity towards your patients. This is a demanding field and you will have to make sacrifices along the way. You have to be determined and willing to put in the work because that is the real way you will learn and be able to make a difference. The initial struggle is challenging but worth the reward. Never lose your motivation to keep going and make sure you do this because you want to. Not because someone else wants you to. You have to want it. I think that is the most important thing I can say.