Born in Damascus, Syria, Ghassan Almeer received his medical degree from Damascus University. In the late 2000s, he moved to the United Kingdom, taking on a role in the foundation program at the Royal Infirmary in the city of Hull. Ghassan then spent some time as an educator at Newcastle University, teaching anatomy to medical students. Since then, he has been heavily involved in many aspects of the medical field across the United Kingdom. Today, he works for the National Health Service as a consultant musculoskeletal radiologist. Ghassan has been a British National for the past 11 years.
In the past, Ghassan Almeer has volunteered with the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), having provided one full week of translation services to a delegate from that organization who came to visit London. When not working or volunteering, Ghassan enjoys dancing, specifically the styles of salsa, bachata, and tango. He also plays classical guitar, specializing in the flamenco genre. He enjoys travelling, snowboarding, tennis, and cycling, as well.
Where did the idea for your career come from?
It came from my senior years of training in radiology, which is when trainees have to decide what specialty we intend to pursue. I wanted something that would add a different flavor to the job. Frankly, radiology can be isolating sometimes, but musculoskeletal radiology is one of the specialties where you have a good amount of patient contact. There are different modalities, diagnostic procedures, therapeutic procedures, and a lot of hands-on skills, so that’s what made me choose it as my main area of professional interest. So, I developed my interest in it and grew to love it.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Luckily, I have different schedules on different days of the week, so I don’t get bored. It varies from day to day, but it usually involves going through cases and providing imaging reports, as well as communicating with clinicians to ascertain the best management for a given patient. It also involves diagnostic and therapeutic procedures which can be quite challenging.
How do you bring ideas to life?
In a word, communication. As a medical professional, because of the challenges we face on a daily basis, we may come across a case about which we don’t know a whole lot. Should that happen, I discuss the case with colleagues and clinicians, as well as look into different online resources and apply knowledge and techniques that I’ve learned from conferences in the past.
What’s one trend that excites you?
There are a lot of new developments in the field of artificial intelligence. It’s not to the point of utility on a daily basis quite yet, but I think that in maybe the next five or ten years it will be, and that will bring with it its own challenges. Artificial intelligence will improve software, which will greatly assist in reporting issues, enhancing images, and quicker scanning. It may also help find diseases or abnormalities that are very small or otherwise undetectable.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
One habit that has helped me during the course of my career is being very persistent, sometimes to the point of stubbornness.
What advice would you give your younger self?
My advice to my younger self would be to pick up a guitar and start playing at an earlier age.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I take on a lot. I’ll be at work and say ‘yes’ to almost anything, so that gives me a heavier workload. Anyhow, to respond to the question directly, a lot of my colleagues would say that I’m efficient, but because of the workload I accept, I don’t really think that’s true.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I am very systematic. In my career, it’s useful to be systematic in the way you report or perform procedures in order to minimize the risk of mistakes. You have to do that over and over the same way for every case, even if it becomes laborious or tedious. I think it’s an important factor in making fewer mistakes, so I would recommend it heartily.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I make sure to always remember that, even though I’m already well-established in my career, I still need to learn. As such, I make a point of always attending courses online or submitting articles to journals—anything that prompts me to learn new things. It’s also something that I enjoy doing.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I didn’t pass my exam on the first attempt. Some exams are difficult. Sometimes you don’t have a good day. I overcame that by taking the exam again. It’s like reading a book twice, and when you read it again, you learn more the second time. I thought about it like that instead of looking at it as an obstacle.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Although I don’t have a specific business in mind, it seems to me that artificial intelligence is rife with profitable possibilities which would help patient care and efficiency. .
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
That would definitely be the money I spent on paying for a private medical scan for my pregnant wife. That was the best thing ever—to see the baby’s heart beating quickly and see a real life child developing inside of her. My wife is the best person ever, and I’m elated to have created a new life alongside her. So, seeing that scan was just a wonderful experience.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
One piece of software that helps me to be productive is my digital calendar. It keeps my schedule tidy and helps me not to miss important appointments. There are also some websites, such as MRI Online, radiology msk online and radiopedia that I visit frequently. I learn a lot from these resources, and even contribute to them.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran. It’s a very old book that I really enjoy.
What is your favorite quote?
“An ounce of prevention equals a pound of cure.” — Old Proverb“An ounce of prevention equals a pound of cure.” — Old Proverb
- The growth of technology, specifically artificial intelligence, will help facilitate better patient outcomes in the medical field.
- It’s crucial to never stop learning, no matter your age or career status.
- By being systematic in everything that you do, you will catch many issues before they become genuine problems, and you will become more effective and efficient overall.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.