Dr Veronica Lugah grew up in a small Iban village on the outskirts of Kuching, Sarawak. Her journey into medicine started in Bangalore, a city in Karnataka State in India where she studied medicine at M.S. Ramaiah Medical College.
She completed her studies in 1997 and did a one-year housemanship in India. In 1999, she started working for the Ministry of Health Malaysia at the Sarawak General Hospital (SGH), Kuching. Upon completion of her housemanship in SGH, she was transferred to Miri Hospital in the Northern Region of Sarawak. Her first venture into public health practice started when she was posted to Klinik Kesihatan Lekir in Manjung, Perak as the Medical and Health Officer (M&HO). It was here that she first understood the importance of public health in ensuring the health and wellbeing of the people and decided to pursue her master’s degree in public health.
Dr Veronica was accepted for the Master of Public Health programme at the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, the University of Malaya in 2004. She completed the Master of Public Health with Distinction in 2005 and continued with the Master of Public Health (Occupational Health) which she also graduated with Distinction in 2008.
Upon completion of her MPH(OH), she was posted to the Negeri Sembilan State Health Department working in the Occupational and Environmental Health Section. In the same year, she was gazetted as a Public Health Medicine Specialist. She has very broad career experience. After Negeri Sembilan, she worked in Hulu Langat Health Office in Selangor. Following that, she was transferred to Miri in 2011 where she worked as an Epidemiology Officer in Miri Divisional Health Office. Her work required travelling to the vast interior of Miri, i.e., Ulu Baram, via logging roads, boats, aeroplanes and helicopters. In 2017, she was appointed as the Miri Divisional Health Officer.
To expand her professional experience, she applied for a transfer to the headquarters of the Ministry of Health Malaysia, Putrajaya. In early 2020, she was posted to the eHealth Planning Section, under the Planning Division. Subsequently, in May 2021, she was promoted to Senior Deputy Director (Health Policy and Plan, National Health Financing and Malaysia National Health Accounts), Planning Division, Ministry of Health which is a JUSA C position.
During her colourful career, she has contributed extensively locally and internationally and received various appointments and awards.