Yaw Asamoa-Bonsu awarded inaugural Nathan Smith Fellowship in Pediatric Critical Care

Yaw Asamoa-Bonsu
Yaw Asamoa-Bonsu, MBChB

The first chair of the then named UW–Madison School of Medicine’s Department of Pediatrics, Nathan Smith, MD’45, served from 1957 to 1963. In 1987, an endowment for a fellowship in his name was established. Earlier this summer, Yaw Asamoa-Bonsu, MBChB, was named the inaugural fellow of the Nathan Smith Fellowship in Pediatric Critical Care. Future fellows will be named every eight to 10 years.

Born and raised in Ghana, Asamoa-Bonsu completed his medical training there, earning his bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery (MBChB) degrees, the primary medical degree awarded in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, South Africa, and other countries. Working in various positions, he rose to the rank of medical director in an underserved community and later completed a pediatric residency in Ghana. He then travelled to Rochester, Minnesota’s Mayo Clinic, where he completed another residency in pediatrics and adolescent medicine.

He is now completing the last year of his pediatric critical care fellowship at the University of Wisconsin, one of six fellows in the program. In this capacity, he has become known for both his clinical acumen and educational skill; he was recently voted “Outstanding Fellow” by residents. His clinical and research interests include cardiac and pulmonary medicine, global health, and transport. This interest in pediatric critical care transport has led him to develop curricula for the use of ultrasound on critically ill children as they are being transported, which could broadly improve the quality of transport care.

When asked to name his favorite thing about the pediatric critical care fellowship, Asamoa-Bonsu responded, “The diversity of teaching staff with regards to where they had fellowship training and their love for teaching. This makes it very easy for them to accept different opinions and different ways of practicing medicine.”

Asamoa-Bonsu was nominated for the Nathan Smith Fellowship by Peter Ferrazzano, MD, professor and division chief, Pediatric Critical Care Medicine. His support for Asamoa-Bonsu is robust and unqualified: “Dr Asamoa-Bonsu is passionate about improving care in underserved communities and has led efforts to develop sustainable programs aimed at improving maternal and child health in Ghana. Upon graduation from our fellowship program, Dr. Asamoa-Bonsu plans to build a career in academic medicine, combining his interests in transport medicine and global health to improve access to medical care in resource-limited settings in West Africa and around the world.”