Dr. Ruchika R. Jha
Doctor & Public Healthcare Consultant
At VictoryTales, we always make efforts to bring some of the meaningful and powerful stories from around the world to empower and motivate our growing community. This week, we invited Dr.Ruchika R. Jha for an exclusive interview to know more about her inspiring journey as a medical professional.
Dr.Ruchika R. Jha is very passionate about the Healthcare of the public, its management, and administration. She has been working independently as a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant. Dr.Jha has diverse experience in delivering healthcare projects of WHO, USAID, SIWI, and UNDP in areas of Integrative Healthcare, Maternal and Child Health, Digital Health, Pharmaceuticals, MedTech Innovations, and Health System Strengthening. Also, she has worked in the USAID project of the Maternal and Child Survival Program (MCSP) in various states of India. She has been part of Research and Policymaking, Healthcare Strategy making, Writing Proposals, and Healthcare Consulting as part of Medicine as well as Digital Health.
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Dr. Ruchika R. Jha
Dr. Jha is a medical graduate with Bachelor in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) from Smt. K.G.Mittal Hospital, Mumbai and has pursued Post Graduation in Public Healthcare Management from the Indian Institute of Public Health-Delhi (IIPH-D). She is also a recipient of Dr.P.G.Tulpule Scholarship at IIPH-D. While studying in her final year of BAMS and internship, she did research on gynecological cancer and Mental Health. She was the winner of the paper presented at the 7th and 8th World Ayurveda Congress held in 2016 and 2018 respectively.
Dr.Jha has experience in Ayurveda Medicine practice as well as Allopathy General Medicine practice. She has diverse clinical experience while working at SevenHills Hospital, Mumbai as Residential Medical Officer (RMO) cum Physician Assistant in Adult and Paediatrics Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery (CVTS) department. Previously, she has been trained and worked as a doctor at Government Primary Healthcare Center, Palghar district, Maharashtra, and at Government Tertiary Healthcare Center (Gokuldas Tejpal Hospital, Mumbai) in various departments of medicines, Causality, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Outpatient Department (OPD), Inpatient Department (IPD), training in doing Post-Mortem, handling Medico-Legal cases, doing Normal Delivery and assisting in Lower Section Caesarean Section (LSCS), Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) and other gynecological surgical processes which have given her immense experience as an overall doctor. She has currently collaborated with healthcare start-ups and is associated with an International Think Tank.
Tell us about your journey till now as a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant?
I feel my journey was a roller coaster pushing me always one step closer to my ambitions. Nevertheless, it was satisfying as I accomplished each milestone by clinging to pursue and achieve my aspiration to be a Doctor and Public Health Consultant. I am still somewhere in the beginning of the runway and have a long way to go!
Why did you choose to become a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant?
I believe in having a strong foundation for building our aspirations. Since I eventually want to serve society in the healthcare and administrative domain, so I have laid my foundation as a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant.
What was your key driving force to become a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant?
The passion to constantly learn about the human body (anatomy, physiology, pharmacology), healthcare industry, and acquiring the public healthcare management skills and implement it by delivering healthcare services more efficiently, effectively, and equitably for the betterment of the society is my key driving force to be a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant.
Can you tell us about the diverse domains across healthcare you have worked that have helped you shape overall as a Doctor and Public Healthcare Consultant?
Yes, of course! My experiences working in a Government Primary Healthcare Center to Government and Private Tertiary Healthcare facilities in various departments of Allopathy and Ayurveda (includes Panchkarma) medicines and field visits in several districts of various states of India and meeting key policymakers of the center and state for their expert opinion in the public health care domain has given me a grassroots level of experiences in both clinical and public healthcare domains.
What’s your source of motivation?
Being constantly aware of my long years of hardships in reaching the place where I am today and the constant desire to achieve my ultimate aspirations keeps motivating me each day with positivity. Also, my parents and close ones constantly motivate me.
How do you react to highly stressful situations or deal effectively with personal stress?
According to me, the pressure is inevitable but managing stress is optional. One needs to become resilient. I do regular yoga, meditation for my physical and mental health, and well-being which helps to release endorphins in brains which in turn reduces stress. I eat an only home-cooked healthy diet and indulge in dark chocolates sometimes. Sound sleep for 6-7 hours keeps me energetic throughout the day. I try my level best to balance my personal and professional life. Also, the sense of gratitude helps me in highly stressful situations.
How many hours a day do you work on average?
At an average for 10-11 hours a day. But, there are days when I work for a few hours or take a break. While I was working in Primary Health Care and Tertiary Hospitals, I used to work for 24-36 hours when required.
What type of Healthcare Ecosystem do you believe?
Strengthening Primary Healthcare in India is of utmost crucial and by having an Integrative Healthcare Systems approach comprising Allopathy and AYUSH. The last person of the society should be able to access quality healthcare at a low cost. Public-Private Partnership at the government level definitely smoothens the process of achieving the Universal Healthcare Coverage.
According to you, how has the COVID 19 pandemic changed the healthcare scenario?
The COVID 19 pandemic has brought a drastic change in healthcare. It has shifted the Telemedicine from an outliner to a necessity. Although telemedicine is not a substitute for physical examination of the patients, it's beneficial in many ways in case of ailments in the primary stage. Patients need not travel to the healthcare facilities and waste time in long queues just for primary ailments and follow-ups to the doctor. It is also cost-effective for the patients. In case there is a need for Blood Tests and Urine Tests, the lab technician can reach the patient’s home to take samples. So, it's convenient in many ways.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
I see myself in the next 5 years, to such a position where I am responsible for contributing to the society however small, but impactful change to bring transformation in the healthcare domain. I wish to be directly or indirectly part of Goal 3 (Good Health and Well-Being) of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).
What piece of advice would you give to college graduates who want to pursue medical science?
Be prepared to face challenges throughout your life. You should build the quality of a learner for a lifetime. Taking up the white-collar job does make you more responsible in serving back to society. There should be stubbornness in taking your work role and implementing it. If you are passionate to be a doctor, you will also have immense satisfaction which is incomparable.
Dr. Jha is available for Public Healthcare Consulting, Telemedicine Consulting in General Medicine Allopathy, and Ayurveda.