07 March 2023 | Story André Damons | Photo Reuben Maeko
Dr William Mhundwa
Prof Thabiso Mofokeng, Head of Department: Internal Medicine, and Dr Busiswa Bisiwe, Head of the Unit: Nephrology and Dr William Mhundwa’s (right) supervisor, congratulates him on his great achievement.

Dr William Mhundwa, Senior Registrar in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of the Free State (UFS), has become the first candidate from the institution to be awarded the prestigious Suzman Medal as the top student in the 2022 examinations of the Fellowship of the College of Physicians (FCP).  

Candidates from all medical schools in the country as well as other African countries wrote this examination in January and July 2022. Dr Mhundwa came out on top and was awarded the medal by the Senate of the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa (CMSA), which oversees the examinations.  

“I congratulate Dr Mhundwa on his outstanding performance,” commented Prof Nicholas Pearce, Head of the School: Clinical Medicine at the UFS. According to him, this is a prestigious award, and given that it is the first time that a candidate from this university has been awarded this medal, it is extra special for us as a department, faculty, and institution. 

Dr Mhundwa was born in Harare, Zimbabwe, to subsistence farmers and is the eldest of four boys. He immigrated to South Africa nearly ten years ago and started studying medicine as a way to fulfil his parents’ dreams. He eventually found his calling in internal medicine, specifically nephrology (kidney disease), and would like to obtain further qualifications in this field at the university. 

 “My achievements are the result of dedication to teaching internal medicine consultants. I am indebted to the Free State Department of Health for the opportunity to train and work under them. I hope to see great academic achievements within this province,” says Dr Mhundwa. 

He will graduate in April 2023 with a Master of Medicine, cum laude. His thesis was about The Prevalence of Chronic Kidney Disease Among Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Patients in Central South Africa

Dr Mhundwa believes “that kidney disease is a scourge in modern society.  Early diagnosis is necessary to prevent patients from requiring kidney transplants and dialysis and to improve the quality of life of my patients”.

Prof Thabiso Mofokeng, Head of Department: Internal Medicine, said, “This achievement represents the UFS’ high academic standards on national front. We hope this is the first of many.”

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