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Local gynae tops

The late Elsies River obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Carol Thomas was honoured with a lifetime achievement award by the SA Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (Sasog) on Monday 9 March.

Sasog membership and nominations committee chairperson Dr Malikah van der Schyff described Thomas as an excellent and beloved obstetrician and gynaecologist who mentored many young specialists and assisted them through difficult times.

Thomas has served in Elsies River, where she was raised, for about 30 years.

“Her manner and spirit inspired many and healed many. As a pioneer and leader in women’s health, we remember her as a kind, inspiring soul who cared about each of us as women, no matter what, who or where we came from – or where we were going to. She was the defnition of an excellent mentor. She listened. She did not judge. She gave and never expected back. The magnitude of her work cannot be cited enough. She was the first female president of the South African Menopause Society. She was awarded honours for “selfless dedication and commitment to reproductive and sexual health and rights” by the Planned Parenting Association of South Africa,” said Van der Schyff.

Thomas was an award-winning health innovator with her development of iMobiMaMa.

“Her mobile solution based design for improving antenatal care in poorly resourced areas. She was a solution based health innovator with her collaborative work in R&D in endoscopic medical equipment. She was a women’s health social entrepreneur and founder of The Women Space. And after we lost her, so many patients will say how lost they feel and they would relate how they were treated with dignity and respect at The Women’s Space,” Van der Schyff added.

Thomas was 58-years-old when she died of complications following a double lung transplant on 12 April last year.

She is survived by her sister, Gail Thomas, her son Adam Thomas-James and her life partner, Alison Gray.

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