Nothing gets in the way of true love. Despite not seeing each other for over 25 years, what was a high school romance has not only been rekindled, but has created an exciting business partnership.
Jody Dawson and Rohana Sergent have established Havelock North’s first independent ultrasound practice.
For Jody and Rohana timing is everything and they are certainly making up for lost time after living separate lives on opposite sides of the Tasman for many years.
They’re now putting their experience, skills and obvious passion to work, establishing Ultrasound Hawke’s Bay in the red brick building in Porter Drive, Havelock North.
Jody has close to 30 year’s experience as a Radiographer and Sonographer, much of that spent in Victoria, Australia, while Rohana’s skills in administration management are a great foil.
“Ro was also the one that gave me the push along to do this after moving home from Victoria last year and settling into life in Napier, she said let’s set up our own practice,” Jody says.
The couple’s story could easily be on the big screen. They lost contact for over two decades and during that time both had married and had children, then gone through break ups. They had often thought about each other but had never connected.
However, Jody’s brother went to Melbourne to visit him over Christmas 2019 and they got chatting about Rohana. Long story short … but Jody’s brother was a facebook friend of hers and out of the blue Rohana sent Justin a Christmas message.
Next thing, Jody responded and after the initial shock decided to facetime each, after both giving their life stories and realising they were both single, within two weeks were catching up in Nelson (after facetiming daily). “Our connection was instant – we knew it was meant to be” they both said.
However, another barrier got in the way. COVID19 struck and the couple, having just got back together had to endure another nine months apart, with all planned visits cancelled, together they made plans for Jody to return home.
“There certainly were tears. This was the best thing that had ever happened to both of us and then Covid hit,” she says.
Now, they’re going full speed making up for lost time, living and working together. They’re excited about creating a successful business that utilises their complementary skills.
“We are creating a very personalised service that puts patients at ease. It can often be a pretty scary situation going to get an ultrasound and it’s really important that we care and that the atmosphere and character of the practice is very personable and comfortable. Some people are experiencing fear and the unknown, so to come in and feel at ease is really important,” Rohana says.
Jody, having returned to New Zealand, says there are some significant differences in the health system of both countries. Unfortunately, one key observation has been the time some people spend on waiting lists in New Zealand.
“It’s something that I wasn’t expecting and we want to provide a responsive service whereby we can perform the ultrasound, and provide a comprehensive report from our Radiologist as quickly as we can. Patient care is very important to me, and I provide the best care I can,” Jody says.
Jody and Rohana also have plans to expand their ultrasound clinic further, and additionally to create an Allied Health facility that can be shared with likeminded healthcare professionals.
To find out more about Ultrasound Hawke’s Bay visit www.ultrasoundhb.co.nz or contact them on 06 650 6744