Palestine Welcomes New Pediatrician – Palestine Herald Press

By William Patrick

Parents in Palestine now have a new choice when it comes to their children’s health care.

Dr. Oluyenisi Akintunde, a graduate of the University of Ilorin, Nigeria and the University of London, UK, hung up her shingle in May and has been busy ever since.

Taking over for Palestine staple, Dr. John Ross, after his retirement in June after 23 years, the city’s newest pediatrician has received a warm welcome from her young patients and their parents alike. The doctor reciprocates these feelings. When asked to name her favorite part about moving to Palestine, the 53 year old pediatrician quickly replied, “the community. The people here are great.”

Hailing from the the western Nigeria town of Ibadan, Dr. Akintunde said that she does not remember a time that she wanted to be anything other than a doctor. The daughter of an engineer father and a mother who was a nurse, she said that her mother was a driving force behind her lifelong desire to practice medicine. However, she stated that it wasn’t until she became a mother herself that she considered a career in pediatrics; medical care for children 0 to 18.

“While mapping the stages of her development, I found my interest in pediatrics,” she said. Besides being a pediatrician, Dr. Akintunde is also the proud mother of a daughter, Oluwakanyinsola, which in her native language means, “God dropped honey into the well.” She beams with parental pride when she speaks about the 21 year old Ball State University graduate living in Washington DC and considering which law school she would like to attend.

Dr. Akintunde, who enjoys reading non-fiction and cooking, admitted that our infamous East Texas weather is going to take some getting used to. Having most recently practiced in Indiana, where June temperatures rarely break 80 degrees, our heat index of over a hundred took her completely by surprise.

“It’s even hotter than where I come from in Nigeria,” she said with a smile.

Weather aside, Dr. Akintunde said she is pleased that her career, which began in 1989 and has included service across the United States and abroad, has brought her to Palestine.

With a seemingly perpetual smile, she called for her next patient and once again said, “the people here [in Palestine] are great.”


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