Dr. Brian Dooreck is a gastroenterologist based out of Miami, Florida, whose goal is to serve and give back to his community.
Beyond his daily practice, Dooreck is also heavily involved in posting content on LinkedIn, the aim being to provide his vast network of followers the chance to glean pertinent and thoughtful insights regarding their health, without having to do a Google search or book an appointment with their physician.
Dooreck genuinely enjoys the content he posts, and unlike some influencers on social media, there is no course or book that Dooreck is trying to sell because for him, LinkedIn is just another way he can help people experience more healthy lives.
This philosophy should come as no surprise, considering that Dooreck, a New York native, always had an affinity for medicine.
“There was no traumatic story,” he says of what got him interested in becoming an M.D.
“It was just something that felt intrinsically right to me. It was a calling and I never thought twice about it.”
Dooreck earned his bachelor’s degree in political science at Stony Brook University before then moving on to the Harvard School of Public Health.
During this time, Dooreck began to develop a deep appreciation for gastroenterology, a branch of medicine that focuses on the digestive system.
Following his stint in Cambridge, Dooreck then packed his bags and began a stint in Tel Aviv, Israel, where he studied at the Sackler School of Medicine.
“I followed my heart, and that path has led me to where I am,” Dooreck says, alluding to his current gastroenterology practice for the Memorial Healthcare System near Miami.
As mentioned, Dooreck is unique in that he creates LinkedIn content which gives both his patients and those in his network access to a dearth of viable medical information.
His efforts have not only educated a general populous who otherwise would not be privy to that valuable knowledge, but his content has also given some people relief and consequently improved the outlook of their health.
“It became clear that my reach as a physician could only extend so far,” Dooreck says of his decision to go viral. “By sharing the things that I do every day in my world, it can really help with the quality of life for some people. It also can help with information not just on a national level, but on a global level as well.”
“Things like hemorrhoids, gas, and bloating really affect people’s quality of life. They are things I deal with all the time. If I can share some information and help improve someone’s quality of life, then why wouldn’t I do that?”
Years ago, when Dooreck set out to better the world through his work in medicine, he had no idea that he would be routinely posting key information on a social media platform like LinkedIn, but he also didn’t know which branch of medicine he would specialize in.
Yet, much akin to the feelings he had as a young boy, Dooreck followed his gut (no pun intended) and listened to the voices in his head that were imploring him to focus on gastroenterology.
“It felt right, and I understood early on that people could be afflicted with heart, kidney, or lung disease, and they wouldn’t know it. Yet, if someone has diarrhea and abdominal pain, they know. It really affects people’s quality of life. I’m able to help guide people through things that are very debilitating and improve their symptoms.”
“Everyone has gone through abdominal pain or has had diarrhea, but not everyone has had heart or kidney failure. For me, that’s where I saw the value in getting involved with gastroenterology because it affects people’s lives so dramatically.”
When it comes to healthcare, drama is usually the last thing that people want to deal with, but in the United States, often people encounter difficulties related to finding the right doctor or dealing with their insurance company over pesky legalese.
Still, despite the obvious challenges that many Americans face when it comes to their healthcare, Dooreck says that people in this country are still receiving the best possible care.
“There is a reason people travel here from all over the world to get healthcare,” Dooreck says. “This is one of the best, if not the best system. It’s just a very big system and it is very broken.”
“But the issue is not the level of care. It’s navigating through it. The issue is not the quality of the doctors. It is access to the doctors. The issue is not the quality of testing. It’s the cost of testing and the access to it.”
This topic has been particularly controversial, especially in the last year as the United States, like every other country, has seen their medical system struggle to contain and treat patients afflicted with COVID-19.
When it comes to the pandemic brought on by the novel coronavirus, Dooreck prefers to keep his opinions private, while at the same time acknowledging some of the realities that have unfolded.
“Anytime that half a million people in your country die from a virus there is a problem, but this is also a sensitive and political conversation for many, and it is not for me,” says Dooreck.
“But the rate of vaccination that is happening is impressive. It’s interesting to see how states like Florida and California handled it differently. We have learned from how different states have handled it and how we handled it as a country. The world has experienced something new, so there is a lot to be learned from it.”
As the world begins to heal from the devastation brought on by the virus, already we are seeing people becoming more conscientious of their health.
This is welcome news for a physician like Dooreck, who recommends that people take the time to diligently examine their diets, a part of preventative care that often gets overlooked, but is crucial when it comes to maintaining overall wellness.
“There is a lot of consciousness with dieting. If you have traveled in an airport pre-COVID or post-COVID, the lack of healthy food options is unbelievable. It is incredible how we have shifted our mindset toward healthier eating but yet you can still go to Disney and see people eating a turkey leg that is the size of a brontosaurus. In that sense, you can question the health decisions and the choices of the mainstream,” says Dooreck, before adding how vital it is that people are aware of the ingredients in their food and beverage choices.
“Sometimes it is misleading when we talk about what healthy eating is. I’ve been there myself with drinking those green drinks from the gas station and looking at it and realizing there were 52 grams of sugar in it. That’s a lot of sugar for a drink the size of my hand, so being aware of options that are loaded with sugar is another thing to be mindful of.”
In addition to promoting healthy dietary habits, Dooreck says that over the next decade he will continue encouraging his patients to undergo colonoscopies in order to prevent colon cancer.
“I would like to see those one in three adults that haven’t been screened get screened for colon cancer. I would like to see people take more steps toward prevention and not be so focused on detection,” he says.
“I also would love to see people be more conscious of their medical histories so that when they walk into a doctor’s office, they are more prepared.”
Dooreck says that all too commonly he deals with patients who are unaware of why they are even visiting his practice, which then makes Dooreck’s job more challenging.
“Often I will walk into a room and people will not even know why they are there,” he says, which gives him cause for concern because when patients have a comprehensive understanding of their medical history, it can drastically benefit their health.
Dooreck adds that for patients to receive the best care from their physician, it is important that they are able to come to each appointment able to share their medical history in the form of a story.
Taking these steps is especially important as families become more disconnected from each other through travel and people living in different parts of the country.
“Nothing is more powerful than that when things are real,” says Dooreck. “It’s simple, but it is overlooked all the time.” QS
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