By Mercy's Courtney Landsberger
ADA, Okla. – Growing up in Northern Ireland, Dr. Fionnuala Gurley says that while she’s always had an interest in caring for people and the community, she didn’t necessarily plan to become a physician.
Originally trained as a pharmacist in Belfast, Dr. Gurley says she decided to pursue medical school after first moving to Oklahoma with her husband, who is a native of Ada.
“I’ve always had a sharp mind when it comes to the sciences, as well as a love of caring for people,” she said. “Practicing medicine has allowed me to combine both of these attributes.”
Dr. Gurley attended medical school at the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine before moving to Rochester, Minn., to complete an internal medicine residency and a cardiology fellowship at Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education. While there, she was awarded the prestigious Marinelli Fellowship, an award given only to one Mayo Clinic physician each year.
“It was a humbling experience and has helped deepen my passion for this field,” she said. “I’m fortunate to be able to take the high level of training I received while there back to the patients that I care for in Ada.”
Having served the community in recent years as a cardiologist, Dr. Gurley now joins Mercy Hospital Ada as a hospitalist, where she will use that training to care for patients who are admitted into the hospital. In addition to specializing in cardiac imaging, Dr. Gurley is quadruple board certified. She specializes in cardiovascular diseases, internal medicine, echocardiography, which is the use of ultrasound waves on the heart, and nuclear cardiology, a technique that allows her to evaluate the heart and pinpoint the size and location of a heart attack.
“What draws me to Mercy Hospital Ada is the environment,” she said. “It’s an all-encompassing place that allows me to connect to my patients on a much deeper level. I enjoy being able to see them as a person, rather than a disease or a diagnosis.”
In her free time, Dr. Gurley enjoys spending time with husband Russ and daughters Cait and Caoimhe. She enjoys running and staying active. Dr. Gurley also plays the flute and previously played with the Belfast Symphony Orchestra and the Ada Community Band.