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Dr Olayinka’s story: Black History Month

Dr Olayinka Fadahunsi
27 October 2020

To honour Black History Month, the BAME and ally network have planned a number of activities throughout October. In addition to this, we have also spoken to colleagues to tell their story about their culture and their work in healthcare.

Dr Olayinka Monisola Fadahunsi-Oluwole works as a Speciality Doctor in Community Paediatrics. She is the Clinical Audit lead for Community Paediatrics and Neurodisability and the newly elected  Staff Governor for the doctors and dentists in the Trust.

Dr Olayinka is Nigerian and was born in the University College Hospital in Ibadan. She is from Ilesha, in Osun state, hence a Yoruba lady.

Dr Olayinka talks through her career in healthcare, people who inspired her to go into healthcare and what Black History Month means to her. Thank you.

What made you want to join the healthcare industry?

My late father was a Paediatrician, and he was my hero. In addition, I am the eldest of six children and caring for my siblings was a role my mother bestowed on me as I grew up. I believe the world is one big family and I love caring. In addition, as a Christian I have always felt led to care.

What is your experience of getting into healthcare?

My  journey started in Nigeria; then a stint in Derby in the 70s. We lived in Derby for three and a half years while my father gained his Membership of the Royal College of Physicians as the Royal College of Paediatrics was yet to be established. I gained my medical degree from the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria in 1985. I returned to the UK in 1989 and passed PLAB in 1992. The journey in Medicine in the UK has been a thankful one. Though the light at the end of the tunnel was often dimmed by circumstances and perceptions, the goal remained by His Grace.

What do you like about working in healthcare?

I love meeting children and their families and offering support. I love working with and learning from different colleagues. I love the challenges that one faces, and I continue to strive ahead due to the assurance of my faith. I love the laughter along the way.

Is there a  black figure that has inspired you to go into healthcare?

My father by  his compassion, innovations and care of his patients and their families in a selfless and loving manner always.

Can you tell us of any black figures that inspire you today?

Rosa Parks, the American black activist and the first lady of Civil Rights!

What does Black history  Month mean to you?

I am excited that we can celebrate difference. We can embrace and display our culture with pride.

What would you say are your greatest achievements in healthcare?

The numerous children and families that I have had the privilege of supporting in my medical career so far and obtaining my Master’s degree in Child and Family Mental Health from the University of Birmingham in 2011.

Do you have a recommended film or book which may educate and inspire others?

I would recommend ‘Roots’ by Alex Hayley and ‘Forrest Gump’ by Winston Groom.


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