SIMG stories: The path to Perth
21 July 2021
Read an interview with specialist international medical graduate Dr Kiran Venkatesulu from Royal Perth Hospital.
Dr Kiran Venkatesulu received a merit award for his outstanding performance in the 2021.1 exam. We spoke to him and one of his supervisors, Dr Gordon Chapman, about their SIMG experiences and what makes a successful working relationship.
"The path that has led me to Perth is a long one, spanning from my specialist training in India to the UK, then Adelaide and finally Perth. I have had the privilege to work amongst supportive and knowledgeable colleagues who encouraged me to attempt the SIMG exams," says Kiran.
"Exam preparation was initially stressful as I was still new to the system and didn’t know where to start. But the mutual support of our study group of fellow SIMGs, the guidance and mentoring at Royal Perth Hospital (RPH) and the endless viva practice and feedback sessions both at RPH and other Perth hospitals through the WA ANZCA final preparation course gave me the confidence to take up the challenge head on."
Kiran's supervisor, Dr Gordon Chapman, goes on to explain how the Royal Perth Hospital supports SIMGs.
“We have over the years been incredibly lucky to have some amazing talent like Kiran who not only excel academically but provide high levels of safe anaesthesia care. At RPH we have a core group of people who work tirelessly at providing counselling, exam practice, viva practice and support throughout the year both academically, clinically and socially. Each SIMG brings a unique challenge requiring a tailored approach and support system. This involves ensuring they are up to speed clinically on arrival. Ensuring they are competent or acclimatised to the Australian system before covering after hours rosters” said Dr Chapman.
“We have introduced a mentor system to help them settle in firstly as well as become more assertive and active patient advocates…and…the exam is often the last hurdle in this process and to be fair it is often the resilience and determination of many of these great clinicians that gets them through”.
“I believe at RPH we merely provide them with the opportunities to do so. In addition to Kiran, we were particularly delighted for Dr Rajesh Parambathu Kumar Cheria who I believe was on his final attempt and who had worked incredibly hard to also achieve a successful result. There were many in the department who had tears in their eyes at the news of his success”.
“The merit award is a totally unexpected surprise and it would be an understatement to say that I am indebted to my colleagues, consultants and my family for their support and encouragement” said Kiran.