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Dr. André Coombs: This Surgeon and Entrepreneur Is Looking To End Burnout By Building Meaningful Connections

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Dr. André Coombs is a trauma surgeon, networker, and entrepreneur. He currently serves in the Miami-Dade area as a trauma surgeon and is the founder of Friends of Medicine – a non-profit organization that has built a massive network of healthcare and business professionals with the goal of easing the stress that is often associated with the healthcare industry. Currently based in Miami and South Florida – Friends of Medicine is looking to officially launch it’s network in New York, California, Texas, Atlanta and has a goal to be spread across the globe over the next few years. 

Background

Several years ago, during his critical care and trauma surgery training at Stanford University, Dr. Coombs found himself in a very low place in his life. Life hit unexpectedly and he was going through a very difficult divorce that left him emotionally and financially drained. Up to his ears in debt from legal fees, accountant fees, and loans – he had no idea how he was going to land on his feet. “I couldn’t pay my rent. I was alone, a board certified surgeon driving doordash just to afford to eat. I remember waking up with -$3,600 in my bank account one day and not knowing what to do.” Although he is now well established and the financial burden is just a past memory, at that time, he found himself needing massive support. And he found it. Everyone from his landlord, realtor, lawyer, and his accountant agreed to defer the cost of their service until he was back on his feet. A year later, he found himself with a permanent job and paid every single person he owed within a month. Due to that experience, he continues to work exclusively with all of those individuals to this day. In the years that followed, he was able to build a successful life and connect to people all around the world as he traveled, worked and looked to leave an impact on the world around him. After nearly two decades, he realized that it was time to do something with the connections that he had made. 

Helping Others

Since he was a teenager, Dr. Coombs has had the opportunity to travel and meet some pretty spectacular individuals – the result has been an expansive market that touches in all of the world’s major industries. “I have friends from over eighty countries. I had the privilege to train with Usain Bolt in Jamaica for four years. It wasn’t intentional, but I built an incredible network just by living life, helping people and enjoying it.” Although he never intended to turn his network into a business, he did always have an entrepreneurial spirit. The intersection of business and his giving personality was organic. “I always found myself helping others in the healthcare industry, from premed, to medical and nursing students. I didn’t want them to go through what I had to go through, alone.” This attitude to give back led him to constantly be referring others to lawyers, accountants, and connecting with other healthcare professionals who also had businesses to refer. That’s when he realized he had an opportunity to help even more people than just those that he knew directly. By launching Friends of Medicine, he built a platform where healthcare professionals could share their contacts, build experiences, and connect with others that found themselves in similar life situations.

“Life is Stressful” 

Whether you are a student in medical school, a recent dental school grad, a traveling nurse or a relocating experienced surgeon, you find yourself with the same needs. Finding a loan, finding a nanny that speaks your language, a real estate agent to find your apartment or someone to help you with legal matters – it can be very stressful to balance that while still performing your duties competently. This leads to stress, fatigue, and eventually burnout. In an industry that is known for it’s high levels of stress, burnout, divorce and suicide, Dr. Coombs is looking to help alleviate some of it. Our motto is simple, “Changing the world one city at a time.” His mission is to help one physician or nurse or dentist at a time to find support and build lasting relationships with others who are silently  going through the same things. By doing this, he believes he can positively transform the entire healthcare industry. “Life happens, and if you don’t have this support system, it can be very hard. We want to fix that.”

What’s Next?

Although, he has already seen a massive response to his network, Dr. Coombs is already looking to expand its reach, through the newly incorporated Friends of Medicine Foundation, set to launch on June 18th 2022 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Brickell, Miami. “It’s quite incredible, this started as a simple graduation party to help some of my friends celebrate making it through surgical residency. Since then it has grown into something so much more. I want to help as many people as I can build a meaningful network that they can trust and tap into as the need arises, not only during tough times but when they want to take their careers to the next level.” As his non-profit grows, he is looking to expand into teaching curriculum in highschools and colleges, creating opportunities for aspiring health professionals to volunteer under experienced professionals and ultimately build a network that empowers individuals at every level of healthcare to build community and a more impactful life. Friends of Medicine is more than just the Facebook or LinkedIn of healthcare professionals. It is a platform designed to support, empower and strengthen the lives of healthcare workers by providing them a community and resources to remove stress, build meaningful connections, and enjoy life. 

About Dr. Coombs

Dr. André Victor Coombs is a General and Trauma Surgeon in Miami, Florida. He graduated with honors in 2007. Having more than 15 years of diverse experiences, Dr. Coombs is passionate about empowering individuals, specifically healthcare workers, with like minded individuals and building meaningful relationships to help ease the burden of doing life alone. When he is not working as a surgeon, building his non-profit or trying to catch a few hours of sleep, he enjoys spending time with his son. His son is an avid golfer and is already establishing himself as a superstar in the sport. Dr. Coombs is also focused on building a legacy and something of value that he can pass on to the world. You can learn more about Dr. Coombs by following him on LinkedIn  if you are a healthcare professional looking for assistance with the next chapter of your life, you can connect with his non-profit Friends of Medicine via their website.

US Army Combat Veteran turned writer helps people reach new levels of success and influence with personal brand building. Luis also writes for Entrepreneur magazine and runs TEDx events and TED circles online. Mentored by Mark Cuban his eye for business and potential growth has been trained at a billionaire level.

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