Diversifying medicine - the life of a doctopreneurSaturday 3rd March saw KCL GP society host the Discover GP Conference, in association with RCGP. The conference comprised keynote speeches from Professor Mayur Lakhani (RCGP President), Professor (previous Dean of Keele Medical School), and Dr Kerry Boardman (lead for undergraduate community medical education for KCL) as well as a series of varied, GP-lead workshops. My own highlight of this conference was the workshop “Diversifying GP: Portfolio GPs”, featuring several GPs, including Dr Rasha Gadelrab who is also Chief Medical Relations Officer at myHealthSpecialist.com. This workshop demonstrated the versatility of a career in general practice, and the options to develop roles in fields like education, business and digital health alongside medical practice, with each of the doctors outlining their own experiences. After this workshop, I was able to speak with Dr Gadelrab, and following on from emails exchanged over the next few days, I was able to arrange a week of shadowing experience with her. This encompassed her work with myHealthSpecialist.com as well as her medical practice. At the start of the week, I attended a GP ‘Lunch and Learn’ at the James Wigg practice; an hour long teaching session for the GPs delivered by leading Dermatology Consultant, Dr Kathy Taghipour. This event was hosted by myHealthSpecialist and Highgate Hospital as part of a series of educational talks delivered by doctor-recommended consultants offering relevant, high-quality teaching, alongside a unique networking opportunity with the GPs. This networking allows the GPs to get to know the consultants so they can give more personal recommendations when referring patients on to secondary care. Later on in the week, whilst shadowing Dr Gadelrab in her role as an NHS GP, I had the opportunity to observe a triage list, foundation teaching session and normal patient list at her practice. As well as observing clinical cases in a primary care setting, I was able to get an appreciation for the real team work, from the doctors, practice nurse, practice manager and receptionists, that makes up such a fantastic practice. I was also able to see the practical usefulness of myHealthSpecialist.com in terms of giving a more personalised referral, which was very reassuring for the patients. During this week of shadowing, I saw how Dr Gadelrab compartmentalised her various roles to give her a manageable balance between entrepreneurship and clinical practice. Each of her roles gives benefit to the others, culminating in a career that is more valuable than the sum of its parts, whilst retaining patient wellbeing at its core. For me, this was a fantastic experience, and has inspired me to explore a portfolio general practice career moving forward.
Bethan Tyler Final year medical student, Kings College London