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Tommy Tran: Working in Private Practice at DFTB17


This talk was recorded live from the careers concurrent stream at DFTB17 in Brisbane.

Tommy Tran is the Director of Paediatrics at Greenslopes Private Hospital in Queensland. Having worked in the public and private sectors, Tommy talks about the latter. Whilst that mythical work-life balance seems so far away for most of us, regular 9 to 5 work is an attractive option. Whether you are just starting your consultant career or have become a little tired of the red tape, Tommy offers a view from another side.

The path to success is often paved with choices that align with personal values and aspirations. Dr Tommy Tran shares his experiences and insights on working in private practice.

Embracing Autonomy

The ability to make decisions aligned with one’s values and vision allows practitioners to craft a unique path that resonates with their career aspirations.

  • Tailoring Patient-Centric Care: Private practitioners have the freedom to provide personalized patient care that extends beyond the immediate ailment. Tran emphasizes the power of spending more time with each patient to understand their medical history and create holistic treatment plans.
  • Entrepreneurial Mindset: Developing business acumen is essential in private practice. Understanding financial management, marketing, and business operations are vital to ensure a sustainable and thriving practice.

Family-Centric Approach

Work-life balance is important and is a sentiment often overlooked in medicine. Tran’s commitment to spending quality time with his family and fostering strong relationships echoed throughout his talk.

  • Flexible Work Hours: A key advantage of private practice is the flexibility it offers in work hours. Tran’s ability to structure his schedule around family commitments, such as his “family Fridays,” underscores the value of finding a practice setting that aligns with personal priorities.
  • Taking Time for Loved Ones: Tran’s emphasis on being present for family milestones and events showcases the ability of private practitioners to create a healthy work-life balance, a balance that resonates with their core values.

Overcoming Challenges with Innovation

Tommy Tran candidly discussed the challenges he faced when setting up his private practice. His journey highlighted the importance of adaptability and creative problem-solving to navigate the complexities of entrepreneurship in medicine.

  • Learning the Business Landscape: There is a steep learning curve associated with managing a private practice. From understanding business structures to financial management, seeking advice from experts can lay a solid foundation for success.
  • Thinking Beyond Conventional Medicine: Tran’s foray into rural and indigenous healthcare showcases the potential for innovative thinking within private practice. Leveraging flexible approaches and alternative funding sources can open doors to impactful community service.

A Network of Support:

There is huge value in building a supportive network, both among colleagues and staff members. A positive work environment and collaboration fostered a sense of community that translated into quality patient care.

  • Team-Based Care: The inclusion of a multidisciplinary team in Tran’s private practice exemplifies the collaborative approach that private practitioners can adopt. Different specialties working together enhance patient outcomes and promote holistic care.
  • Mentorship and Sharing Knowledge: Tran’s willingness to mentor and offer guidance to others entering private practice reflects the importance of shared experiences. Building connections and learning from seasoned practitioners can aid newcomers in navigating the challenges and opportunities of private practice.

As you consider your career paths, Think about finding a practice setting that allows for growth, innovation, and the fulfillment of both personal and professional goals.

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