This week's Doctorpreneur of Doctology is Dr Thomas Kelly.
A PGY3 Surgical Doctor moonlighting as a co-founder, product lead for Fraser's Medical, the biggest premedical tutoring company in Australia and the founder CEO of Oscer.
Tom has a background is in mathematics and his maintained a strong interest in data science and machine learning throughout his medical studies.
What organisation / startup did you found?
What is its noble purpose? To democratise diagnostic reasoning using machine learning.
I want Oscer to be used by every medical student, doctor and patient in the world to fundamentally change the way diagnosis happens.
It starts with a medical education product and it ends with Oscer giving real time diagnostic insights that save lives and reduce missed diagnoses.
Tell me about the first 10 years of your life?
I loved school, playing basketball, learning maths and watching Arthur amongst other shows.
What age were you when you had your first paying job? What was it? At age 14 I had a job at Toys R Us for two days until they gave me a shift from midnight to two in the morning for $10 per hour. I decided at that point to move onto my next opportunity.
What made you want to be a Doctor and what specialty did you choose? Why? I wanted to be a doctor because it seemed like a truly interesting and productive way to spend a life. Learning, helping others and improving quality of life. I found surgery appealing due to the highly technical artistry that it promises.
What made you want to be an Entrepreneur or follow an alternative route? When exactly did you decide?
I have always had an urge to leave an impact. Being a doctor is fulfilling, but it is one patient at a time, your impacts are measured by hours worked not problems solved.
That combined with a knack for disruptive thinking have pushed me to make better experiences for patients and clinicians outside the bounds of traditional medicine.
I really began as an entrepreneur at 18 years old, so it has been a life choice rather than single decision.
Are you still practicing as a Doctor now? If yes, do you intend to stop if your organisation or project takes off?
Yes and yes.
Why do you think traditionally many Doctors struggle with entrepreneurship? Or at least they are perceived to? Medical training is very linear. There is a treadmill that moves, all leading to clear endpoints. This constant movement leads to inertia.
To be different to the others is to step off the treadmill, risk falling behind in training or losing out on career success by traditional medical standards.
It is the classic sunk-cost fallacy, that I cannot do anything other that Medicine because of how much time and effort I have already put in to becoming a doctor.
What is your favourite quote?
"You're always wrong, the hardest part is knowing how wrong".
Ray Dalio in Principles.
What would you do in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse?
It would be great, more time to work on Oscer.
You can find out more about Oscer here: