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Hispanic Heritage Month: Chasing the dream of becoming a doctor

Published: Sep. 24, 2021 at 10:57 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Action News 5 has partnered with La Prensa Latina to highlight some outstanding individuals in the Hispanic community in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Action News 5′s Briseida Holguin introduces us to a Christ Community Health Services obstetrician whose dream was to be a doctor.

Maria Del Carmen Fernandez is a doctor who specializes in obstetrics. Fernandez’s medical journey began in Venezuela, her home country.

Fernandez was born in Acarigua, Venezuela and as a little girl, she knew she wanted to work in the medical field.

“All my life I wanted to be a doctor,” Fernandez said.

Fernandez studied in Carabobo, Venezuela, and was an OBGYN for seven years. In 2005, she moved to Miami, Florida, but because her title did not transfer, she went back to school to regain her white coat.

“Lo mas dificil de todo fue, el idioma,” Fernandez said. “The most difficult thing was the language.”

Fernandez says her son and her dreams of being a doctor kept her motivated.

“Realmente lo que yo quería era volver a hacer doctor, como yo era en mi país. Fue muy difícil al principio, fueron muchas barreras pero lo hice,” Fernandez said.

“Truly what I wanted was to be a doctor like I was in my country. It was very difficult at first, there were a lot of barriers, but I did it.”

After finishing her studies, she did her residency in Maya West, Puerto Rico. After five years there, she began a fellowship with Newstart Family and Obstetrical in Memphis.

Fernandez has now been with Christ Community Health Services since 2016 as an obstetrician.

“I feel so well working here in Christ Community because I have the opportunity to continue doing prenatal care, to continue helping women,” Fernandez said.

When reflecting on her journey, Fernandez says it was all worth it and says every dream is worth chasing.

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