How have these experiences colored and influenced your space?
Each astronaut is different. There is no set path. What space companies are actually looking for is a kind of jack-of-all-trade, because once you get into space you have to be able to solve quite a few problems.
I am truly a heart engineer my basic tendency is a love of machines. I just want to solve the problems and then put it in a box. I think the basic definition of medicine is really human interest. You put yourself in someone’s shoes and then decide, “What would I do if he were me or my brother or my mother?” This is what I found interesting in medicine. This brings you to the core of how to be human. It helps you cut through the noise of culture, reaching people’s hearts. It is extremely useful in space. You can talk in a really reassuring way and keep things in perspective and be helpful. It always assures if there is any condition on the board. For the crew, taking care of each other is our kind of up
During the epidemic you went back to being a practicing physician. How do you get to medicine because of being in space
I strongly feel that I am still in space – I am only in the world of motherhood. That attitude doesn’t leave me. From space, you see glimpses of the earth and it is certainly beautiful: a glittering blue, and the oceans and the lights of the city at night are a dance of tragic living. But the most impressive thing is when you turn your face away from the earth and look differently. And what you see is nothing – emptiness. You can imagine that lasts forever. It is very interesting to see how exposed people are to this tiny fragile miracle of a planet. It has given me a kind of love for people and how incredible it is that we hold on to this place to develop all these cultures and nurture kids and create inventors and create art it makes me love people.
For those unfamiliar with space and how medicine intersects, how would you describe some of the ways in which the treatments we are researching in space will benefit the people of Earth?
We do a lot of research on space with astronauts. Because there are so many diseases that affect astronauts. Just being in the environment of the place is not bad for you is the feeling of gravity; Space, radiation, isolation and imprisonment – the pressure of this environment is too bad for you. So we like the perfect guinea pig for medical research: bone health, cardiovascular health, cerebral health, psychology, psychology, hematology, immunology – name it.
The other side is in medical technology. We need to enable our astronauts to help themselves and help each other in this super-remote environment. When we live in rural and remote areas, arranging medical care for workers in hazardous environments, for our military in a mission, for large-scale operations, or for the elderly, the problem is similar to the problem we face here in the world. Even very weak to go to the clinic. So the problem of bringing medicine to the patient is a very modern issue. And I think the epidemic has given us all a great appetite for that ability to bring medicine to the patient using these places to test how these things work.