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Trainee doctor seeks help to pursue aim of becoming cancer specialist

A trainee doctor could have her medical studies curtailed because of a shortfall in tuition funding of just $4,265.

And Bermudians are now being urged to help Aisha Bassett in her quest to become a top cancer specialist by donating to her college fund.

Ms Bassett is currently studying at the University of East Anglia in the UK, but needs $6,500 to pay for an eight-week long internship at a hospital in Belize, which is due to start this summer.

The trainee doctor has managed to collect $1,762 through her church and another local benefactor — Jenefer Brimmer of the Asthma and Allergy Relief Centre — has donated a further $500 jointly with HI Group Marketing & Consultant Ltd, a Belize-based company. But unless Ms Bassett can raise the outstanding amount, her internship is at risk.

Yesterday Mrs Brimmer urged everyone to support Ms Bassett in her ambition.

“It’s so important that we support our young people,” Mrs Brimmer said.

“Here we have a young Bermudian who is doing great work and she needs our help.

“We hear so many stories of our young people not being able to find work and yet here we have a Bermudian who is only seeking a small amount for what is a very worthy cause.

“We must be able to help her as it would also be a great opportunity when other Bermudians go to countries like Belize to assist in any way possible. We encourage Ms. Bassett with her future medical career and we look forward to the day when she can bring her experience and knowledge back to Bermuda to assist Bermudians.”

In an interview with

The Royal Gazette last week, Ms Bassett said she was inspired to study medicine following the death of her grandfather when she was just 11.

And she said the Belize internship was a vital part of her studies because it offered the rare opportunity of clinical placement in oncology — the study of cancer.

“Because of the high prevalence of cancer in Belize, and the fact there is only one cancer centre there which serves the entire population of 356,600, I believe that I will have the opportunity to gain more clinical exposure through interaction with a larger volume of patients than I would encounter in Bermuda,” Ms Bassett, who has spent several summers working at KEMH as part of her studies, said.

“Furthermore, I will gain the experience of viewing and managing late presentations of various cancers, specifically prostate and breast cancer, which I read is a problem in Belize. I believe that gaining these varied experiences and exposure to many cases and presentations of cancers early on in my career will be of great benefit to me when treating cancer patients in Bermuda in the future.

“I love my Bermudian people. In my interactions with Bermudian patients they have been kind-hearted and resilient. Furthermore, it will also allow me to make a more informed choice about my career option in oncology and neurology due to the intense exposure I will receive. Personally, I have found that I do have a special compassion for cancer patients and because of this I would like to take on this opportunity for international experience in a country where the cancer rate is very high.”

Ms Bassett has until May 3 to raise the funds for her Belize studies. For more information about Ms Bassett’s medical elective or to sponsor her, e-mail aishabassett@gmail.com or contact Jenefer Brimmer on 236-7558 or 799-4695.

Donation: Jenefer Brimmer of HI Group Marketing and Consultants, Ltd will donate $500 to Aisha Bassett toward her planned internship in Belize (Photo by Zachary Friesen)

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Published April 08, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated April 08, 2013 at 12:41 am)

Trainee doctor seeks help to pursue aim of becoming cancer specialist

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