JOBS & CAREERS SPRING 2018 - 70
to be a doctor
since I was
Angela Aramburo, 41, is a paediatric intensivist consultant at
Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust, London
oth my parents are doctors
- an immunologist and an
orthopaedic surgeon - and I've
always been fascinated by physiology.
They always said, "Do whatever you want,
but don't do medicine!" but ever since
seeing images of the famine in Ethiopia
on the TV in the 1980s, when I was
seven, I knew I wanted to be a doctor.
I went to medical school in Barcelona
and then completed four years of
7 0 /// J O B S & C A R E E R S
paediatric training at a hospital there.
In my final year, I had the opportunity
to work in a children's hospital in
Dallas, Texas, which had a huge
paediatric intensive care unit [PICU].
That really opened my eyes to how
medicine can be performed at its best.
I started in my current job at the
Brompton in 2014. I'd visited the unit
before and knew the Brompton was
one of the best places for PICU, with
an excellent reputation. When the role
came up, it was just what I wanted to do.
I enjoy almost every aspect of my job
and I still love physiology. Every day I
realise how fantastic our bodies are. I
like the academic and intellectual part
of my job, too, reading and discovering
the advances in our field. The Brompton
is a training hospital, so we're always
surrounded by trainees. I enjoy teaching
and sharing experiences. The questions
they ask make me a better doctor.
Working as team is a major part of
my role. I enjoy coordinating teams
so that everyone feels useful and good
about their job. The Brompton is the
happiest place I've worked. The ethos
is inspirational; people work as a family
and truly care for patients and staff. I feel
honoured to work in a place that's well
known across the world for its expertise.
There are challenges in my work. It
can be exhausting, with long shifts. I
also have to make decisions fast, and
sometimes I question if I could have
done something differently. The work
can also be difficult emotionally.
Since I've had my own children, I'm
much more empathetic to parents. In
a way it's harder, but on the other hand
it's more rewarding because I feel the
parents' pain. You never know why one
death touches you more than another.