Improving women’s health outcomes

Johnson & Johnson and Olympus have stepped forward to support a surgical training opportunity awarded to Dr Jessica Dunning.

This fellowship has far exceeded my expectations. I’m so grateful to J&J and Olympus for supporting the fellowship and supporting me.

The Auckland Hospital and Mercy Ascot Private Hospital Australasian Gynaecological Endoscopy & Surgery Society (AGES) Surgical Fellowship has been awarded to Dr Jessica Dunning, a Senior Medical Officer in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Auckland City Hospital.

The fellowship involves diverse work at Auckland City Hospital and Greenlane Clinical Centre, on-call gynaecology and assisting in private operating sessions. Jessica (pictured above, centre) will spend the next two years developing her skills in treating issues such as endometriosis, chronic pelvic pain and management of fibroids.

Jessica says, “Most of all, I’m looking forward to learning about managing complex patients and improving my surgical skills, so I can deliver high-level care and offer women a comprehensive service.

“I’m passionate about improving women’s health. Surgery can often be part of managing a variety of conditions, and skills in surgery can be difficult to acquire. There is nothing worse than feeling like you can’t help a patient because your skills aren’t there, so it is hugely important to me. I want to be able to improve women’s health outcomes.”

The fellowship is being driven by Dr Michael Wynn-Williams, Dr Sarah Fitzgibbon and Dr Simon Edmonds, who are committed to developing gynaecology surgical training opportunities in New Zealand.

“This is a huge opportunity for me to learn from Michael. The fellowship gives me exposure to his expertise, both in complex surgical and medical management of a wide range of women’s health issues, and sets me up for amazing career development. I wouldn’t have this opportunity to achieve my career goals without Michael and my fellowship funders,” says Jessica.

Johnson & Johnson and Olympus are partially co-funding the two-year fellowship and the companies are looking forward to seeing the clinical achievements and improved patient outcomes in laparoscopic gynaecological surgery and colorectal, urological and thoracic surgery as a result of this fellowship.

Olympus Medical Scientific Affairs Operations Manager Kate Elliott says, “We are delighted to sponsor this surgical fellowship, which complements our mission to help people everywhere fulfill their desires, curiosities, dreams, ambitions and lives through our True to Life philosophy. We congratulate Jessica and wish her every success.”

Jessica adds, “Coming home from the UK in 2021, I wasn’t sure what new opportunities I would find. This fellowship has far exceeded my expectations.”

“I’m so grateful to J&J and Olympus for supporting the fellowship and supporting me.”

Dr Michael Wynn-Williams (pictured above, left) says, “It is really important that we can offer world-class surgical fellowships here in New Zealand. I myself had to travel overseas for a specialised fellowship and, as a result, I didn’t end up returning home for 20 years. We are very appreciative for the assistance of the Auckland Hospital Foundation for helping to make this happen.”

Auckland Hospital Foundation Director Candy Schroder says she was delighted to help this fellowship happen: “As the hospital’s charity, it is always humbling to see companies step forward and support training opportunities for staff, which wouldn’t otherwise be possible, and which will help so many patients in the future. We look forward to following Jessica’s progress.”

To see how you can support training opportunities at Auckland City Hospital, click here.