Durban – For many medical students publishing peer-reviewed research in a reputable scientific journal remains a pipe dream. But for Kumeren Govender, a final-year medical student from the University of KwaZulu Natal, this is something that he has already mastered.

At the age of only 23 this young medical student and talented musician will soon publish a scientific paper he has written as a lead researcher, something which is regarded as a huge accolade and a rare phenomenon in the academic world for an undergraduate.

His research on clinical risk factors affecting HIV-positive patients in a hospital setting, is set to be published in the Pan African Medical Journal. Not only has he co-authored a further two articles previously that were published in the South African Journal of Infectious Disease and African Health Science, but he has worked with some of the country’s top scientists in the research institution Caprisa (Centre for Aids Programme of Research in SA).

Given his early success in medicine it is hard to believe that when he chose to study medicine in 2012 it was an 11th hour decision for this young man from Shallcross, Durban. “I decided to change my career path a month before I started engineering after weighing the options and particular motivation from my late gran. I will be the first medical doctor in my family,” he said.

After he matriculated at Star College with 12 distinctions in English, Afrikaans, Tamil, business studies, accounting, biology, physical science, mathematics probability, mathematics, advanced mathematics, life science and information technology, he registered at UKZN.

Sunday Tribune