19/02/2018 11:10 SAST | Updated 19/02/2018 11:10 SAST

Local Black Women Breaking Down Barriers In Medicine

Mbokodo, we salute you!

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From the youngest black female hospital CEO to the country's first black female neurosurgeon — young women in medicine are trailblazing.

These mbokodos, all in their thirties, are as inspirational as they are aspirational. And today we're celebrating four of them, because it doesn't have to be a "Woman Crush Wednesday" to recognise greatness.

1. Dr Nokwethemba Mtshali-Hadebe

In 2016, she became the youngest hospital chief executive at 31. The University of KwaZulu-Natal graduate heads up Bertha Gxowa Hospital in Germiston, a district hospital with 767 staff members. Dr Mtshali-Hadebe also has an MBA from Wits University.


2. Dr Viwe Mtwesi

At 32, she is the country's youngest black female cardiologist. Dr Mtwesi was part of the medical team who treated Nelson Mandela during his last days, for which the Mount Frere-born doc was honoured by former president Jacob Zuma with a Mandela Medallion gold medal. Dr Mtwesi currently works as a cardiology fellow at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.


3. Dr Ncumisa Jilata

Dr Ncumisa Jilata became the country's youngest female neurosurgeon in 2017 at 29, and is one of only five black female brain surgeons in South Africa. The Mthatha-born doctor completed her Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery degree at Walter Sisulu University's Mthatha Faculty of Health Sciences in 2009. She now works at Steve Biko Academic Hospital.


4. Dr Nomusa Shezi

In 2017, Dr Shezi became KwaZulu-Natal's first black female neurosurgeon and is one of only five black African women neurosurgeons countrywide. The Pietermaritzburg-born doc completed her studies at UKZN in 2008. The 32-year-old is currently based at Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital.