Akem Olives Nkwain and Anyang Amedia
By The ninth batch of graduates from the Christian Internal Medicine Specialization (CIMS) residency of the Baptist Institute of Health Sciences have been told to remain humble as they begin serving in their new portfolio as internists. This was the substance of a charge during the CIMS graduation ceremony on November 28, 2021, at Mbingo Baptist Hospital. “Congratulations on your new certificates. Do not let them get into your head. Put shoulders below your legs, for the Bible says where there is pride, there is a disgrace. Do not look down on anyone, every opinion counts. Always ask for help for no one knows it all,” advised Dr. Sama Akanyu, Surgeon while delivering the charge. “Listen to and have the courage to accept criticisms,” stressed Dr. Sama. The new graduate internists are expected to put their acquired skills into immediate and full use, given that need for specialist doctors of their kind is huge. Especially at a time in Cameroon where the doctor to patient ratio is 1:40,000 [one doctor per 40,000 inhabitants], lamentingly wide as per the World Health Organization recommended ratio of 1:1000. Dr. Julie Stone, the CIMS Program Director said the training is aimed at meeting a felt urgent need, given that many health facilities in the country cannot boast of a doctor who is just a general practitioner (GP), not to mention a specialist. CIMS is therefore meeting these needs by training internists. “We teach evidence-based medicine here, trying to incorporate the best and proven practices of each disease that confronts our patients,” explained Dr. Julie, Internist par excellence. These internists are there to attend to complex medical cases and to oversee and coordinate the work of the GPs, she added. Speaking in a Commencement address, Rev. Dr. Nditemeh Charlemagne, CBC Executive President encouraged the laureates to put others first as they serve. Do your job daily as if it was your first and last day on earth. “I do not doubt that many of you will be princes and princesses who will go on foot while slaves go on horsebacks,” the EP mimicked. Rise above all injustices that may come your way. “I know that with the many medical schools out there, you may find your worth not appreciated as much as those from those other institutions who do not seem to offer evidence-based care like the one you received during training at CIMS, but you must be determined to serve the people who need your skills and services,” Rev. Dr. Nditemeh pressed on. The internists were further called to seek wisdom and guidance from God, as well as to consider every medical encounter as a learning opportunity. The graduates took turns to respond by pledging to serve to their utmost ability and by the grace of God. It’s worth mentioning that CIMS stands out as a sustainable internal medicine training programme that trains and empowers Christian physicians to continue the healing and teaching ministry of Jesus.
The recent graduation constituting the ninth batch saw three Cameroonians emerge as internists after a four-year residency.