2017 Southern Medical Program Graduate – Celine Akyurekli
What attracted you to your field?
For a number of years, I had volunteered at my local hospital in the palliative care unit. I enjoyed visiting with patients and learning about their individual stories. I studied molecular biology in my undergraduate degree and was interested in working in the medical field but after many summers of work in medical research laboratories, I missed having interactions with patients. So therefore, I pursued a career in medicine so I could have a direct impact on the health and care of individuals.
In 10 years, what UBC moment will you still be talking about?
I have especially fond memories of my rural family medicine placement in Port McNeil. During that month, I had the opportunity to be a part of a very compassionate and skilled team of rural health care providers who practice the full spectrum of primary care in a remote setting. During this elective, I had one particular experience that solidified my desire to practice rural family medicine. When on call in the local emergency room, I treated a young woman who was very sick with a gallbladder infection. I then managed her care as an inpatient in the hospital. A few weeks later while I was working at a remote outreach clinic in her community, I had the opportunity to follow up with this woman on her recovery, and meet her young daughter. The ability to practice that spectrum of medicine, in a variety of environments, and to have continuity of care with my patients was extremely engaging and rewarding.
What’s next for you?
I will embark on a two year residency in Rural Family Medicine at UBC’s rural Okanagan program in Kelowna. I look forward to working with world class medical professionals and growing my knowledge base and experience. I am also very excited at the opportunities that await me in the R-2 year to practice in other rural communities of BC.
As you look ahead, who inspires you?
I am inspired by the rural physicians that I have had the opportunity to work with over the past two years. These physicians are devoted to caring for the health of their communities. Their broad medical knowledge and skills are impressive and yet they also know the personal stories of each patient in their practice and are always practicing patient centered care. I am inspired to be able to practice the full spectrum of primary care as they do following my residency.
Name one thing on your bucket list.
I am looking forward to more outdoor adventures in BC with my partner and our dog Gunnerbro. I am hoping to take a climbing trip to the Bugaboos in the near future.