In the Year of Celebrating SG Women, we present stories which showcase and celebrate women’s multi-faceted contributions and progress at SNEC and SERI.
Join us to honour and acknowledge our team of amazing women who have made impact in the field of Ophthalmology, inspiring those around them with their brand of ethos in life.
Dr Livia TeoSenior Consultant, Oculoplastic Department, SNEC Programme Director, SingHealth Ophthalmology Residency Programme, SNEC
Why did you choose to become an ophthalmologist?I chose to be an ophthalmologist subspecialising in oculoplastics as this role allows me to restore patients’ vision through cataract surgery, improving their function and appearance through lid surgery. It’s gratifying to know that what I do has a direct impact on my patient’s quality of life. As a medical student and medical officer during my ophthalmology rotation at SNEC, I was inspired by the numerous mentors I encountered, many of whom were leaders in their respective fields. Of those I interacted with, I was particularly inspired by the ladies, who showed me that it’s possible to be a good clinician and surgeon, a leader in the academic circle, while balancing their roles as mothers.
How has family support helped you get to where you are in SNEC?My husband, Dr Laurence Lim, a Vitreoretinal surgeon in SNEC, is extremely supportive of my personal and professional life. He never hesitates to take on parenting duties, especially when I have to work after office hours or during weekends. I am filled with gratitude to my parents for being my pillars of strength, encouraging me to chase my dreams and providing me with moral support through all the night calls, exams and challenges I faced in my career. In particular, they — along with my in-laws — have been taking care of my children during the day so I can go back to work full time.
What have been your biggest achievements to date?I am grateful for the Oculoplastics Surgical training opportunity at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, and MEEI, Harvard Medical School in Boston, USA, where I had the chance to learn from several esteemed colleagues. Having been given the role of Programme Director in the SingHealth Ophthalmology Residency Programme, I am also thankful for the opportunity to impart what I have learnt to the junior doctors. This is an important responsibility, and I look forward to improving the learning experiences of our residents! Still, being a mother of two young children while juggling all the above definitely counts as my biggest achievement yet!
In five to 10 years, what do you hope to have accomplished in terms of your work?I hope to continue expanding my repertoire of clinical work and develop my skills as an educator. This will enable me to guide and mentor the next generation of ophthalmologists.
here to check out the
Women of Vision series.
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