Benedict Nwomeh, MD, MPH, is a pediatric surgeon and director of Pediatric Surgery Residency at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, a professor of surgery and pediatrics at The Ohio State University, and director of the Wexner Medical Center’s Global Surgery program.
Dr. Nwomeh grew up in Nigeria and cites his childhood experiences with health care as the reason he went into medicine.
“In my village, there was one day a month when a physician would visit,” he explains. “I felt that people deserved better. They deserved access to a physician whenever they needed one. I wanted to help make that a reality.”
Dr. Nwomeh went on to earn his medical degree from the University of Lagos College of Medicine in Nigeria and later received his master’s degree in public health from Ohio State. He has served residencies in general and pediatric surgery at Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. He has also trained at East Surrey Hospital, Queen Mary University Hospital, Salford Royal Hospital, and Wrexham Maelor Hospital in the United Kingdom.
As a pediatric surgeon, Dr. Nwomeh treats a variety of conditions in newborns and children including congenital anomalies, trauma, inflammatory bowel disease, and several other types of intestinal and lung diseases. When seeing patients, he reminds himself that he isn’t just taking care of a child, but their family too.
“A big part of working in pediatrics is helping the families of patients as well as the child,” says Dr. Nwomeh. “It is important to provide an atmosphere where families feel comfortable and assured in their child’s care.”
As director of the Global Surgery program, Dr. Nwomeh is encouraging residents and faculty to become global citizens and contribute to making safe surgical care available to patients around the world.
“This program is important because it teaches physicians about global health issues and better prepares them to treat underserved populations in America and around the world,” he explains. “It is a program aimed at making sure everyone, no matter where they live, has access to safe and high-quality surgical care.”
Enhancing the treatment of underserved populations is one of Dr. Nwomeh’s ultimate goals, and he is thankful that Ohio State Wexner Medical Center is supportive of this mission.
“When I came to America, I was hoping to work for an institution where I would serve the local community and [it would] also allow me to help to build surgical capacity back home in Africa. Ohio State and Nationwide Children’s have been very supportive of this, and in the 15 years I’ve been here, I’ve taken multiple trips to African countries to work on training surgeons and providing quality treatment for patients in need.”