The origin story
In December 2017, the Medical Women's Federation of the UK ran an "Advent Calendar" series on Twitter, which referenced a different historical female doctor each day and celebrated her work
I had never heard of the MWF, or even contemplated the need for such an organisation. However it struck me that since the MWF was celebrating its 100th anniversary then perhaps this was indeed a useful and valuable tool for female medics in the UK. I put it out there to the few hundred followers I had on Twitter at the time. It seemed to strike an immediate chord, and I was inundated with replies from enthusiastic colleagues. After a little bit of to and fro, the name Women In Medicine in Ireland Network was agreed upon, which gave us the corny-but-catchy acronym “WIMIN”.
Since then, I have had support and encouragement from medical women all around the country, and beyond, from all specialities and grades. The membership continues to grow apace, and the enthusiasm has been overwhelming.
There is a huge appetite for an organisation that supports, encourages and advocates for women in medicine in Ireland.
At this year's inaugural conference an AGM will be held to elect a committee which will oversee the network, and move it from one woman's whim to an active membership organisation with a positive future.
A word from our founder, Dr. Sarah Fitzgibbon
My name is Sarah Fitzgibbon and I am a GP in Cork. I qualified from UCC in 2000 and took a slightly circuitous route to GP training, receiving my MICGP in 2006. I work in the practice where I trained as a registrar, in the northside of Cork city.
In 2014 I was diagnosed with liver metastases from bowel cancer. I started to write about my experiences as a patient in my blog, Adventures of a Sick Doctor.
Since my diagnosis I have taken to throwing myself into a number of projects - writing, fundraising, advocacy, campaigning, and WIMIN-founding - mostly to distract myself from the misery that could be stage 4 cancer.