013 – An anesthesiologist taking the pain away from the home buying experience

On this episode, I get to chat with Dr. Peter Kim. Dr. Kim did his undergraduate studies at Johns Hopkins University, and then attained his medical degree (MD) from University of Maryland School of Medicine. Currently he is an anesthesiologist in Los Angeles, California. Peter’s session is a bit different than my previous interviews. Why? Well, the common theme shared by my other guests revolved around leveraging our credentials for media presence or achieving financial freedom.

Dr. Peter Kim
Dr. Peter Kim

Although Dr. Kim loves the idea of financial freedom, his story is about disrupting the real estate industry with his company – Curbside Real Estate . The impetus to start the company came from his frustrations while purchasing a home and wondering why there wasn’t a better way for busy professionals like himself. Curbside Real Estate touts being able to streamline the process of purchasing a home for busy professionals by using a preferred network of realtors and mortgage loan lenders. The company is even touting no private mortgage insurance (that’s a big deal)!

Check out the website for Curbside Real Estate – www.curbsiderealestate.com

Things you’ll learn in this episode:

  • The story behind the creation of Curbside Real Estate
  • What role social responsibility plays in his company as well as the positive impact it has in less developed areas of the world
  • How he overcame being timid about his business with colleagues
  • The current top 3 mistakes physicians are making when purchasing a home
  • Lifehacks he uses to balance a full clinical schedule with being a family man and now a successful entrepreneur
  • How he answers #imnotjustadoc


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012 – Dr Renee Matthews from The Ask Dr Renee Show

Dr. Renee Matthews
Dr. Renee Matthews

My next guest is Dr. Renee Matthews – host of the wildly popular Ask Dr. Renee Show. She has turned her passion for talking about medicine to the masses into her lifestyle. After facing difficulty with getting into an OB/GYN residency, Dr. Renee pivoted onto her

networking skills that garnered her opportunities like a XM radio show. She’s now a well-sought after media medical expert, blogger, and national speaker. Oh, don’t forget to add social media guru to her list of skills – she now coaches physicians on how to distinguish themselves through multiple social medial platforms.

You can find her at: askdrrenee.info

Follow The Ask Dr Renee Show: www.youtube.com/user/AskDrRenee

Things you’ll learn in this interview:

  • Her plans to transition from YouTube to network TV
  • Why it’s so important for doctors to embrace social media
  • Her best productivity lifehack
  • How she answers #imnotjustadoc

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011 – Ask Dr. Darko featuring Katie Brewer

Katie Brewer, CFP
Katie Brewer, CFP

Katie Brewer, a fee-only financial planner was a guest on episode 4 and discussed basic financial educational tips for physicians. Based on the downloads, that was a favorite among you all! In this episode, Katie Brewer and I get to answer various financial questions from our listeners.

Dr. O – Virginia

  • Are variable annuities a viable financial product and if not what’s a better product?

Dr. L – Massachusetts

  • I have close to 100k in federal student loans with interest rates between 3 to 4%; when is it better to invest vs pay off student loans?
  • What’s the maximum amount I can invest in a 529 account for my kids?

Dr. C – Kansas

  • Why are so many people pushing index funds over individual stock?
  • What are your thoughts on Robo advisors vs investing on your own?
  • What about Peer to Peer lending?


You can learn more about Katie Brewer and her fee-only financial planning firm at Your Richest Life.

Here’s the article Katie mentioned in her answer to Dr. C – The 7 Deadly Sins of Investing


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010 – This doctor had it all, but didn’t want it

"I had a degree from a prestigious college, had been accepted to my top residency program, had a bright future with a decent salary and job security waiting for me, and all I felt was angry and afraid. I didn't want what came with it, the practice of medicine." 
Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley, Physicians in Transition - Interviews with 25 doctors who successful reinvented themselves

A very sobering, yet powerful quote from my next guest Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley. Michelle is open about her story of realizing that clinical medicine was not for her. After graduating from medical school, Dr. Mudge-Riley went through both uncertainty and stress, yet, she found her way and a strong community of physicians who thought and felt the same way she did.

Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley
Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley

This experience led her to create Physicians Helping Physicians, her coaching business for doctors looking to transition to non-clinical careers.  For over 10 years, Dr. Mudge-Riley has been helping physicians find satisfaction and solutions with their medical careers. Besides the coaching business, Dr. Mudge-Riley’s work has been featured in numerous media outlets including KevinMD, The D.O., and The Physician Executive Journal.

Things you’ll learn in this interview:

  • How lucrative the field of career coaching is compared to clinical practice
  • Common reasons for dissatisfaction she sees among her clients
  • Her take on social media and why she encourages her clients to use it
  • Role play: What’s her advice for the 36 yr old CT surgeon who is fresh out of fellowship but can’t see himself opening chests for the next 25 years
  • How she answers #imnotjustadoc

009 – Your private doctor will see you now

Dr. James Pinckney
Dr. James Pinckney

There’s more to Dr. James Pinckney than what you see in the VistaPrint commercials. He’s a major player in concierge medicine, starting his practice (Diamond Physicians) in 2012 in Dallas, Texas. He has opened two additional locations in the Dallas metro area and has expanded the practice’s scope of services, now known as Diamond Luxury Healthcare. Dr. James is a Fox News medical expert, actor, and even has a US patent on a surgical gown… Nice!

Docs, if you don’t know, concierge medicine has become a popular alternative for patients and physicians. The usual model revolves around patients paying a month fee (or subscription) and, in exchange, they get exclusive access to their primary care doctor. Depending on the practice, this access can include:

  • Same day appointments with no waiting time
  • 24/7 direct access to a physician (no answering service in most instances)
  • Telemedicine or email access

If you’ve been living under the rock, here is Dr. James in the national VistaPrint commercial.

Things you’ll learn in this episode:

  • How a patient request in the middle of the night  during his General Surgery residency led him to an epiphany and set the foundation for his path towards concierge medicine
  • Why he’s so passionate about concierge medicine and what about the current climate of healthcare that has more docs considering this practice style
  • How he’s standardizing his practice to be replicable not only in Family Medicine but in other specialities like OB/GYN; he also has a franchise model in the works
  • Some of the intricacies of concierge medicine  and direct primary care
  • How he handles being available to his patients 24/7. No answering service here folks!
  • How he answers #imnotjustadoc 


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008 – How not to get ripped off buying life and disability insurance

Jamie Fleischner
Jamie Fleischner

I’m willing to bet that all of you have either purchased or heard the reasons why you should purchase life insurance and disability insurance. These two products are meant to protect your best wealth-building weapon – you and your income! Whether or not you fully understand these products (and many doctors don’t), the implications can be quite costly. Ranging from just a couple of Benjamins to stacks on stacks of Clevelands, how much you pay for your insurance plans will depend on how well you understand the products and your current financial situation.

I invited Julie Fleischner, president of Set for Life Insurance, to step outside the box on this episode. She’s an independent broker who specializes in disability, life, and long term care insurance. With over 20 years of experience, she has seen plenty examples of physicians either being sold the wrong products or being over-insured.  Full disclosure –  I have used her services to help me revise my current insurance coverage (more about that on another show).

You can learn more about her services here –  Set for Life Insurance

In this episode you’ll learn:

  • The difference between an insurance broker and agent
  • If all physicians need life and disability insurance
  • How to purchase life and disability insurance without feeling ripped off
  • What is a rider and which ones every life and disability plan should have
  • Why women pay a lot more per month for disability insurance and what women can do to get around the gender price hike
  • We run some scenarios – For example, find out how much insurance a 32 year old newly minted female physician really needs

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007 – Dr. Pham merges innovation with disruptive thinking

Dr. Julien Pham
Dr. Julien Pham

On this episode, I chat with Dr. Julien Pham – Chief Medical Officer and Founder of RubiconMD. Dr. Pham merged his experience as a nephrologist with his passion to innovate – and is truly living his life outside the box. With an eye for e-health he helped create RubiconMD, which is a technology platform that connects primary care providers to specialists with the aim of reducing unnecessary referrals and duplicate tests. Imagine the possibilities that could play out with this platform in third-world countries – where access to specialists can be rare!!

Find out more about RubinconMD at www.rubiconmd.com

In this episode you’ll learn:

  • The steps he took to transition from his Harvard academic appointment as a nephrologist to being the founder of two start-up companies
  • How important is it to be around like-minded physicians
  • What he finds most rewarding – Chief Medical Officer of a start-up, nephrologist, or volunteer work in global health
  • His techniques behind his meditation rituals that will help bring clarity and decrease stress
  • Why he’s not just a doc


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006 – Get a fair shake on Wall Street with the White Coat Investor

James M. Dahle, MD, FACEP
James M. Dahle, MD, FACEP

How many of you just want to stick your head in the sand when it comes to understanding personal finance and investing? I get it!  The majority of us had no exposure to finances in college and medical school which either makes us feel like we don’t know what we’re doing or makes us feel obligated to pay someone else to manage our hard-earned money!

Well, what if I told you that understanding investing is a lot simpler than the concepts we all learn in medical school? Don’t take my word for it.  My next guest, Dr. Jim Dahle (a.k.a The White Coat Investor), reinforces that point on this podcast. Like many of you listening, he had a bad experience with a financial advisor and unknowingly bought financial products he would later regret. Sound familiar? Dr. Dahle didn’t get discouraged by that, he sought empowerment through self-education, acquiring enough knowledge to start his website, The White Coat Investor. This is not just a side gig, people… His side hustle has become arguably the most comprehensive website for doctors who are looking for a “fair shake” on Wall Street!

You can find him on his website whitecoatinvestor.com

In this episode you’ll learn:

  • How he balances his medical practice with running this great website
  • Top 3 financial mistakes made by doctors
  • Why cash value life insurance is pushed so hard to physicians
  • High yield financial decisions every doctor in debt should make right after graduating from residency
  • Why he’s not just a doc!


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005 – Miles to go before they sleep – Drs. Matthews & Landry level the playing field one bus stop at a time

Drs Matthews & Landry
Drs. Matthews & Landry

Docs, I hope you’ve got your bus passes ready for this next episode! We’re taking a ride with the co-founders of Tour for Diversity in Medicine – Drs. Kameron Matthews and Alden Landry. As we all know, there’s a physician shortage in the United States and it’s only going to get worse. The physician shortage disproportionately affects those from minority communities, specifically African – Americans, Native Americans, and Hispanics. National initiatives from the Association of American Medical Colleges and the US government exist to help decrease this shortage, but what about bottom-up grass roots efforts to tackle this problem? Well, that’s exactly what the Tour for Diversity is doing – putting physicians, medical students, and pre-med advisors on a bus and driving hundreds of miles to target students from under-represented backgrounds and teach the basics of the medical school admissions process.

Follow and support this amazing organization at www.tour4diversity.org

In this episode you’ll learn:

  • What sparked the idea for the Tour for Diversity in Medicine
  • How they balance clinical medicine and running this organization
  • About the success of the tour – but also the trials and tribulations from the first ever tour
  • How balancing friendship and business has helped create a family-like atmosphere on the bus
  • What advice they have for others who have similar ideas but suffer from “a failure to launch”
  • How they each answer #imnotjustadoc

004 – Financial Ed. for Docs 101 – with Katie Brewer, CFP

Class is in session! That’s right.. we’re getting an education on personal finance and financial independence from Katie Brewer, CFP. She’s a fee-only certified financial planner and owner of the financial advising firm – Your Richest Life.  With a focus on both Gen X and Y’ers, you’ll find her advice in various media sources including Forbes, The New York Times, and podcasts like Stacking Benjamins and His & Her Money.

In this episode you’ll learn:

Katie Brewer, CFP
Katie Brewer, CFP
  • What you should look for in a financial advisor
  • Understand the different pay structures for financial advisors
  • Top three doctor financial mistakes
  • How to break the cycle of living paycheck to paycheck
  • What does it mean to be financially independent
  • Get the basics of investing – like what is a stock? A bond? What is passive vs active investing


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