The best thing is giving someone in need a helping hand

Merle just finished her last day at ZGT in Almelo. She will now be working as an assistant surgeon in the hospital in Emmen to have a better chance of being trained as a surgeon. But she will return to Twente as soon as she succeeds, where there are plenty of career opportunities, according to her.

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In short

  • Merle Geerds from Oldenzaal will start working in Emmen to have a better chance of being trained as a surgeon. She would like to return to ZGT after this one-year career trip.
  • She also makes a case for Twente; there are plenty of opportunities for elementary physicians to work at the great clinical hospitals in this region according to her.

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This article is part of a series called “Twente Leeft!” (Twente Lives!). You can read personal stories here about living and working in Twente. Twente is a nice place to be, according to the talents we meet. The beautiful nature, space, the down-to-earth mentality; they all characterise Twente. There are also plenty of career opportunities! Twente has many innovative, international and future-proof companies that are desperate for staff. Want to know what Twente has to offer? You can find Frank Willems's story below.

Merle enjoyed her job at ZGT for 3.5 years. “I worked in the Trauma Surgery department, the Vascular Surgery department, the Abdominal Surgery department and the emergency department. I learnt a lot there. I knew I wanted to become a surgeon, but this experience made me absolutely sure.”

From Groningen to Maastricht

You have to gain experience in surgery as an elementary physician and be lucky enough to get accepted to be eligible for training, which is far from easy. Merle started working in Emmen to have a better chance of getting a place. “I did not manage to secure a place in the last round, so I am hoping this step will allow me to.”

If the past could predict the future, then she will succeed. "I have always wanted to become a doctor", says the girl from Oldenzaal. "And it has remained that way. I chose a high school profile that would give me that opportunity. But I was not selected in the lottery, so I started studying Biomedical Sciences in Groningen. Suddenly I received a phone call that I could start after all, but only in Maastricht! I was still living in Groningen on Friday but had moved to Maastricht by Monday, all the way on the other side of the country.”

It took some getting used to, but it was exactly what she wanted. Merle worked in Eindhoven and Venlo, but also at the MST and, as mentioned, at the ZGT for 3.5 years. "This work makes me so happy", she says. "You can wake me up anytime to repair a wrist or for a major trauma. Work in the hospital constantly changes; you never know what the day will bring. I love it. But the best thing is being able to give a helping hand to someone in need. As a surgeon, I can combine my fascination for the human body with working with my hands; that is amazing."

Hospitals are desperate for elementary physicians.

Travelling from her current home in Oldenzaal to Emmen every day is not bad because she hopes to achieve her dreams this way. She will continue to live in Twente because the position is for one year. "And my roots are here in Twente", she adds. "I like the people who live here; they are pleasant patients. And the environment here is beautiful; I like to cycle my gravel bike near the Hulsbeek, for example. If I get the chance, I will return to ZGT. It is an excellent hospital with a lot of expertise regarding the oesophagus, traumatology and diabetes, among other things. I think it is a shame that many people are leaving. There are so many opportunities for research with the technical university so close by. It's a shame that people only look to the West. There are some great top hospitals here that are desperate for elementary physicians.

Enthusiastic about Twente

Merle is doing her PhD research in collaboration with the University of Twente. “I am working on optimal care for hip fractures, particularly into the prevention of complications such as pneumonia. We are currently developing a device – the e-forto – that measures the squeezing force in the hand. Research has shown that pinch force indicates a patient's condition, which says something about their recovery. If this is validated, we can use the device for patients with other conditions. So there are plenty of opportunities", says Merle, who is keen to name her trainers so that other doctors who have become enthusiastic about Twente after reading her story can get in touch: Martijn Lutke Holzik (ZGT) and Ronald Beuk (MST).

Twente Lives

Twente is the ideal place to live and work, according to the talents we meet. Want to know why? Read personal stories about living and making a career in Twente on Want to look for a job immediately? Then take a look at our extensive job site.

Contact information

Ziekenhuis Groep Twente
Geerdinksweg 141
+31 (0)88 7087 878

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Date: 25 July 2022 |

Source of tekst: ZGT |

Author: Maaike Thüss

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