Dr Errolyn Tungu, the Acting Medical Superintendent for Vila Central Hospital and the first female obstetrician-gynaecologist for Vanuatu, is a great supporter of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, celebrated on 11 February.
“My passion is working with women and contributing to women’s health on a daily basis,” says Dr Errolyn, “in particular connecting with the women in Vanuatu; they speak to me and I feel the connection with the women in our society where cultural values are strong and where it is difficult to discuss many issues of an intimate nature.’’
Key to Dr Errolyn’s success has been her belief in the transformative power of education and the important role that women play in medicine and science. She was a recipient of an Australia Awards scholarship aimed at developing skills and knowledge to drive change, contribute to development in Vanuatu and build enduring people to people links with Australia and across the Pacific region. As a graduate from the Fiji School of Medicine in 2014, Dr Errolyn reflects on the opportunities provided through her studies.
“On the occasion of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, I encourage all girls of school age to stay focused, strive for academic excellence and consider careers that can have a positive impact for other girls and women in Vanuatu and the Pacific.”
The passion demonstrated by Dr Errolyn in her work focusing on cervical cancer and her tireless efforts advocating for women in this area has led her to become a board member of the Pacific Society for Reproductive Health (PSRH) — a platform for Pacific reproductive health workers such as midwives, obstetricians and gynaecologists, which has its secretariat in New Zealand. Dr Errolyn is now the leading focal person for the Society on cervical cancer in the Pacific.
Australia Awards Vanuatu applications close on 31 March 2021, more information is available at https://australiaawardsvanuatu.org