Dr. Cathy Rehfus-Wilsek is a general practitioner practicing in River Grove, Illinois. Dr. Rehfus-Wilsek does not specialize in one area of medicine, however provides routine health care services. General practitioners typically have regular, even life-long patients who they provide health care services to. Dr. Rehfus-Wilsek provides services including physical exams, immunizations, and diagnosing and treating multiple illnesses and injuries. General practitioners typically work in private offices and clinics and have staffs of nurses and administators.
Education and Training
All Saints University School of Medicine
Areas of expertise and specialization
Faculty Titles & Positions
- International Training and Teaching Nurse Practitioner Students -
Professional Society Memberships
- American Medical Association, Beta Beta Beta National Biological Honor Society, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, National Society of Leadership and Success, National Association of Professional Women, Poetry Society of America
What do you attribute your success to?
- My passion for medicine is lifelong and currently I am getting ready for an eight week medical mission trip to the village of Moshi in Tanzania Africa. The major reason for doing this trip is twofold; 1) to provide much-needed medical resources to the Maasi population in Tanzania, and 2) to improve my clinical skills as a way to improve my application for US medical residency program. Here is a little background about why this is so important to me. I have wanted to be a physician since I was in second grade however it took nearly 30 years for that dream to become a reality. When I was 30 my six-year-old daughter was diagnosed with a form of childhood leukemia. At the time I had just begun my studies at University. I spent the next three years being her primary caregiver, patient advocate, and medical liaison.
During that time my desire to become a physician was reinvigorated. My daughter?s physicians were role models of which I aspire. And in August 1997, days before my daughter?s death, she made me promise I would not give up on my dream. To that end, I returned to University and received a bachelor?s degree in biological sciences, along with three minors: biological anthropology, biomedical ethics, and chemistry. Upon completing my undergraduate degree I then attended the first two years of medical school in the Caribbean, the island of Dominica in the west Indies. I then returned to the United States and completed my last two years of clinical clerkships in Chicagoland hospitals. During the last two years of medical school I became involved with an organization, Refuge International, and have done seven medical missions to the mountainous regions of Guatemala in a town called San Raynumdo caring mainly for the underserved indigenous Mayan population. These trips, while extremely satisfying and instructive, last only five days each. The medical mission to Tanzania on the other hand, will allow me eight weeks of caring for the underserved indigenous Tanzanian people.
I have since found that obtaining a medical residency position in the United States is a complex, complicated, and arduous endeavor. In my first attempt I was sadly unsuccessful. After speaking with some program directors I was told that increasing my clinical experience would improve my chances of obtaining a medical residency in the 2015-16 interview season. I?m certain it is clear now what I hope to accomplish in going on this mission and why this mission is significant at this time in my life.
However, I would not want anyone to think that my motives for purely selfish, I enjoy global medicine. I enjoy knowing I can utilize my skills and talents to bring much-needed scarce healthcare resources to people in underserved regions. There are three hospitals in Moshi Tanzania dedicated to service of Western visitors mainly in the region to climb Kilimanjaro. Sadly these hospitals resources are not available to local villagers. The Majengo health center, where I will do my volunteer work, is the only facility in the area dedicated to the Maasi villagers. There are outpatients in the health center about 60 to 100 every day. Only the patients of the maternity ward are staying overnight. Other patients who need observation overnight get referral to another hospital. About 70 to 80 babies are born in the Majengo Heath Center every month. There are 10 beds in maternity ward and 3 in labor room. There are more than 30 child patients every day.
The health center has many duties. One of the most important duties is taking care of the outpatients. The most common diseases are malaria, tuberculosis, pneumonia, hypertension, diabetes, diarrhea and vomiting, skin diseases and S.T.I?s. There are special S.T.I. doctors from KCMC university hospital coming to Majengo Health Center. Also minor operations are being done there. The opportunity to work in this facility means more to me to be expressed in just words.
- International Medical Missionary
Hobbies / Sports
- Writing Poetry, Volunteer Work
Favorite professional publications
- Journal of the American Medical Association, New England Journal of Medicine
Cathy Rehfus-Wilsek's Practice location
River Grove, Illinois 60171 Get Direction
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