COVID-19 has led to many healthcare staff suffering from burnout and anxiety. But nurse Parfait Munyemana’s (@parfaitmunyemana) has found a way to keep the stress at bay, creating content on TikTok. While providing nursing humour, high fashion and quick wit, it’s easy to see how he gained 74 000 followers with his content attracting 2.6 million likes.
The 23-year-old content creator is a registered nurse who hails from the Mother City. Born in Rwanda, Munyemana was raised in Cape Town and has lived here his whole life.
He holds an honours degree in nursing from the University of the Western Cape and works as a nurse in a maternity ward, and the emergency room at a day hospital.
The young creative said he believed he did not choose the profession, but that the profession chose him.
“I initially chose Bioscience, but my mom, Didi, told me to try nursing for a year. I did it for a year and I realised that this is for me.”
He added: “I love what I’m doing. I love working in the emergency room and labour ward, and I know this is my passion.”
Munyemana said he realised his niche on the popular app was creating content around his job.
“One of my videos gained 200 000 videos in one day. Working in the labour ward gave me so many ideas for content-creation,” he said.
On TikTok he often hops onto trends, seeing how he can apply them to a medical context.
“Any content relating to my job has become so easy to do. I get so much inspiration from it. I enjoy fashion and lifestyle content too, but my favourite content is relating to my occupation.”
His colleagues at work are treating him like a celebrity.
“They always tell me that they see my TikTok videos and they know how famous I am. They also love engaging with my content,” he said.
He added: “My manager loves my content and she’s a big fan of it. She always encourages me to go for it. I try to not post anything that will give away where I work.”
In future, the nurse aspires to drive his account with fashion and lifestyle content.
“I know how to make lemonade from lemons. I want to show people how you can be boujee on a budget,” he said.
“I want men to see that all of this is possible. I want to do everything and give content that is hot, fun and natural.”
His medical advice to anyone is that “Dr Google is not your friend”.
“Whenever you have an issue with your health – go see a doctor. They are there to help you. Google is going to make you think you’re dying, and cause you unnecessary anxiety.”
He added: “It is worth remembering that a pack of panados goes a long way.”
Munyemana’s advice to anyone considering going into nursing is to take their time before making the decision.
“With nursing, you need to have resilience. It’s a job that involves full-aspect holistic patient care.”
“Sometimes a patient comes with a knee issue, but they have depression and that needs to be seen to as well,” he added.
“It’s not just patient care – it includes physical, psychological, emotional and financial aspects. When someone comes to a nurse for help, you need to have the emotional strength to holistically care for your patient.”