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17 Apr 2018

Realising dreams inspires progress

It is said that whoever saves a single life is considered to have saved the whole world. – Source Talmud 

Welcome to the first edition of the AMA student e-newsletter, a quick read to update yourself with student relevant information and what the AMA is doing for you.  

I’m humbled to have the opportunity to write the inaugural message, and feel fortunate to be a part of this profession that is so close to my heart. Aside from the humanistic aspect of what we do, medicine is an art that can readily give a lifetime of personal fulfilment through its challenges. 

My journey into medicine was not a straightforward one. I earned a degree in law first. During that time, I had personal experience with depression, anxiety, and other health challenges. I acknowledge our colleagues in medicine facing their own walks in the darkness, for the journey can be truly lonely. In retrospect, I am thankful for this experience as it played a big part in shaping my future. It was through this that I discovered a passion for medicine. 

Still, the path was not to be smooth. Halfway through medical school, I was involved in a catastrophic car accident that caused a spinal cord injury and quadriplegia. After about seven months in hospital and four years recovering, I came back to medical school. Some felt that it couldn’t be done. Fortunately, some felt that it could. Almost three years later, I write this to you as a resident in an emergency department. Let me tell you, it has been the time of my life. 

We are in a sacred position to have the opportunity to make at least some difference in a life every day, as a part of our work. It may not involve sticking a finger in a critical bleed daily, but certainly can include taking an extra minute to give some words of comfort to someone whose world is falling apart. Having been a critically ill patient, I can assure you that it means everything. 

Each edition, this section will identify and celebrate the challenging journey of a medical student or a doctor in training that will inspire us all. So share your story, or of someone you know, and we will publish it for the world to know. 

I wish you the best of everything in medicine, and hope you find a passion in it if you have not already. 


Dr Dinesh Palipana

Medical intern with Gold Coast University Hospital

AMA student e-newsletter team

Read other articles in this edition

Published: 17 Apr 2018