Tell us a bit about your career so far. What is your current activity?
I’m a clinical/medical oncology fellow at Research Institute of Clinical Medicine-Academician F.Todua Medical Centre, besides that I’m locally actively involved in Georgian Group of Young Oncologists activities.
In 2020 I joined ESMO Young oncologists committee and in 2021 ESMO public policy committee. I cooperate with ESO and ESCO also. I won mentorship with ESCO and will start studying on CCB4 (certificate of competence in breast cancer) in April 2021 .
My research focus is on thoracic malignancies, breast cancer and oncofertility.
I’ve published research articles on the current situation and challenges of lung cancer treatment in Georgia.
Currently, I’m working on several projects related to oncofertility, lung cancer treatment improvement, cancer awareness and public policymaking.
What motivates you?
Unstoppable progress in oncology field. Literally every stage of every disease now has longer survival than 20 years ago. Innovations never cease in our field and our patients are offered newer and better treatments daily.
Why did you choose to become a medical oncologist?
I was always fascinated by immunology and genetics that actually led to my enrolment in medical school, but then I realised that only laboratory work was not satisfactory to me. Medical oncology ideally synthesizes science and bedside medicine. There are daily changes to our understanding of cancer and hence new ways of combatting the disease. Today, we have all the tools to change our patients’ lives for better and to ease their fight with cancer. Honestly, I always aspired to follow Gandhi’s famous quote - “the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others” and I think oncology provides me with just perfect opportunity to do so.
What does your involvement with ESMO and the Young Oncologists Committee (YOC) mean to you?
I joined ESMO YOC in 2020, relatively recently, but the members have instantly become my second family. We plan the events for our peers and work in the direction of inclusion for all oncologists worldwide. We all come from drastically different backgrounds and countries but the common desire to bring novelties to oncologists and to include sessions that would benefit the youngsters in every conference has unanimously united us. To me personally, the YOC, is a perfect tool for international cooperation,it has opened so many doors for me as a medical oncology resident practising in a resource restricted country. It’s a perfect background for networking and collaboration. I am deeply flattered to be part of YOC, it feels like a dynamic powerhouse that always moves forward and takes into consideration needs and desires of so many oncologists worldwide. The positive feedback we’re receiving is worth every second of our time.
Do you have some good advice you would like to share with your international colleagues?
My advice would be to never stop learning , always work on yourself and strive to be better in your professional field . Being able to provide international level of evidence based treatment is the blessing ESMO provides us with, regardless of your place of practice. So follow our activities and never be afraid to ask questions. Sometimes it might be hard to manage such an inflow of information, but remember good things take time and "Radix studiorum amara".