“To whom much is given much is expected.” That is the dictum Dr Simiyu lives by in her career and personal life.
A graduate of the University of Nairobi’s School of Medicine, she is the other only two trained female transplant anesthesiologists in Kenya.
She works at Kenya’s largest referral hospital — Kenyatta National Hospital. She says her desire to care edged her closer to medicine.
As a medical intern, she was under the wing of a mentor anesthesiologist who took her through the dictates of anaesthesia, which led her to take it as her subspecialty. She honed her skills at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in India under a fellowship programme.
"Once you are done with the transplant and the graft is functioning as expected, the joy you feel is rewarding. For me, it is a moment when we hand the recipient a new lease on life. Nothing can top that."
“I was mentored during my internship by an anesthesiologist who made me his apprentice. I would be there with him in the theatre, preparing drugs. The more I did it, the more I discovered that it was the area of medicine I was interested in. Between 2018 and 2019, I took the Fellowship in Transplant Anesthesia programme in New Delhi India. This qualified me to fully practice as a transplant anesthesiologist,” she says.
Over time, she has learnt that science is diverse and it could heal and change. And through it, she has seen a restoration of lives.
“Once you are done with the transplant and the graft is functioning as expected, the joy you feel is rewarding. For me, it is a moment when we hand the recipient a new lease on life. Nothing can top that,” she says.
Regrets in her decade-long professional journey? “I wouldn’t call them regrets. They are growing pains. We are two female-trained transplant anesthesiologists in Kenya – you can imagine the demand and the workload. But it also comes with new territories to mentor young doctors in training and encouraging them to get into the practice.”