The specialty of obstetrics and gynaecology is unique in healthcare in that doctors aren’t only saving or prolonging a patient’s life, but ushering a new one into the world. For obstetricians, the happiest moments of their job intertwine with its greatest pressures – the joy that a new baby brings to the human heart. With over 15 years’ experience in this profession, Dr Vo Trieu Dat, who works at FV’s Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department, says that the happiness his work entails is worth every moment of struggle.
High-pressured work requires complete professionalism
Every job has its own pressure. The more difficult and meaningful the job is, typically the more stress the worker must face. Within the specialty of obstetrics and gynaecology – when there are at least two patients to care for, instead of one – every day brings obstacles. Dr Dat shared that: “Obstetrics problems are quite common. Doctors have to ensure the safety of the mother as well as the health of the baby or babies, so pressure is unavoidable.” However, Dr Dat is absolutely confident in his ability to ensure the best outcome for his patients, as he spends many months monitoring and advising mothers-to-be, accompanying them through their pregnancy and preparing them to give birth.
In recent years, with the development of social networks, news about complications in obstetrics which resulted in the death or disablement of mother or baby has garnered considerable attention from the community. In some cases, the problem was caused by the negligence of the doctor, but in others, unexpected complications occurred which the team of doctors were unable to predict. Dr Dat shared that, being an obstetrician, he and his colleagues are always sad to hear of or face a case where unexpected events negatively impact the life of their patients. In addition to constantly improving their knowledge and skills, and being careful not to make any mistakes, a doctor also needs to help their patients and their relatives to understand that every medical team will always do its very best, but every situation carries a degree of unexpected risk.
FV Hospital’s Head Midwife Ms Tran Thi Tranh Trang has worked with Dr Dat for more than 17 years. “Working with Dr Dat is less stressful than my roles alongside obstetricians at other hospitals during my career,” she shares. “He understands that this job requires us to support each other, which is why he is willing to help nurses, midwives and other caregivers so that we’re always working together as a team.” The delivery room is always meticulously clean and tidy. Every step — preparing surgical cloths, arranging tools, sterilising tools after birth – most follow international standards in healthcare. Ms Trang says the system, which she calls “Comprehension from the foreign medical sector”, has helped to reduce the workload for midwives, both physically and mentally, so that they can complete more tasks, more quickly.
“I choose Dr Dat”
When working in the medical sector, doctors sometimes must face shortcomings or failures. However, Dr Vo Trieu Dat believes that doctors must do their best to reassure themselves and lift their spirits. He adds: “Besides the pressures of our roles, the happiness I find in helping my colleagues also helps me a lot.” Within obstetrics and gynaecology, every time the teams face a stressful complication, he and his colleagues have a chance to improve their skill and confidence for their next case.
When he first began his medical career, Dr Dat walked onto the obstetrics and gynaecology ward with no plan regarding what he might specialise in. However, he found so much joy when working in this field that he ultimately decided to follow the path of an obstetrician. Perhaps Dr Dat’s natural cheerfulness and tenacity are what makes him so successful in this specialty. Ms H. P. Lan (29 years old, Ho Chi Minh City) shared her experience of having to visit the emergency room when she was pregnant with her first baby.“Dr Dat was on duty to provide emergency assistance that day, not my usual doctor, but he helped with the same thoroughness, enthusiasm and kindness. When I had my second baby, I decided to choose Dr Dat as my dedicated obstetrician,” she explains.
Before he starts every shift, Dr Dat focuses on being enthusiastic at work, and finding something joyful to celebrate every day.
Ms N. T. N. Anh (34 years old, Ho Chi Minh City) shared: “Each doctor has a different style of working, and I decided that if I were to have a third baby, I would also choose Dr Dat. “Thinking about what could happen over the nine months of pregnancy, having a dedicated doctor who accompanies me like a brother at each step always makes me feel reassured.” Dr Dat’s gentle gestures, calm voice and impeccable appearance have always been received positively when he connects with patients, and sets the groundwork for strong communications and understanding.
The best moment is when the baby is born
It’s common for pregnant women to have concerns when consulting with male doctors. However, Dr Dat has helped many patients overcome that barrier. “Dr Dat’s medical professionalism and degree of care made me feel as comfortable around him as I might be around my best friend,” says Ms Lan. Alongside offering the specialist skills and experience of an obstetrician, Dr Dat also considers helping mothers to prepare psychologically for bringing their babies to term and then deliver as essential aspects of his mission. Even when going into the delivery suite fully prepared, most mothers-to-be – especially those who giving birth for the first time – still have worries around what will happen during childbirth. After nine months or more of preparing a patient for the time of delivery, it is the role of an obstetrician to make an even greater effort to care for their patient’s mental health in the delivery room. “Dr Dat encouraged me to fight, telling me: ‘You can do it!’ says Ms N. Anh. “When he lifted my baby up to me to hold, although I was still hurting and feeling a little out of it, I still felt like he was one of my relatives,” she adds. Dr Dat has often said that his favourite thing about working as an obstetrician is when the baby is born. “When I welcome a small baby into the world, that moment is very special…” Nevertheless, to achieve that unforgettable, joyous moment, a doctor must be a leader who braves every stressful moment, steering the talents of the care team in the delivery room while supporting his patient throughout the experience.
When asking Dr Dat what he might do if he wasn’t a doctor, he quickly replies: “I would be a singer”. When he was a child, music was his hobby and many members of FV’s staff confirm that he has an artistic style. Perhaps the essential sophistication required by the medical profession has helped many doctors have an affinity for the arts. Listening to a melody can stir many feelings, but for an obstetrician the first cry of a baby can evoke so much more – emotions that no word can describe.