We recently had a chance to interview Neil Rooney, Senior IT System Administrator at Ada Health. We continue with another article featuring an employee of this global health company. Gustavo Vidal works at Ada as Medical Content Editor. He told us more about his role at the company and the development of his career.
How did your career start?
My medical career started very conventionally — I've done my medical school in the Faculty of Medicine of Porto. After that, I went to do my internship as a General Practitioner in Faro in the south of Portugal. After my GP training, I went to study Tropical Medicine in Belgium and joined the NGO Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF). I've been working in different places around the globe since then.
What is your typical morning routine like?
Usually, I wake up fairly early, and I try to do some meditation in the morning, at least 10 min of it. Then I have my breakfast — I usually make a smoothie with peanut butter, banana, and oats. Then I enjoy cycling to work for some good 20 min.
Can you explain your role at Ada Health?
I'm in charge of medical content, which means that I'm focused on integrating and developing the medical knowledge-base behind Ada's core artificial intelligence system.
What's the most exciting thing about your job?
I like that everything is brand new. For those who are used to working in a clinic and one-on-one with individual patients, it's a bit different. Being in a health company, office environment, having a routine… it's exciting to have this overview of everything and knowing that you're a part of something much bigger than just doing a routine job. You're providing information and knowledge that will probably be used to help millions of people around the world.
What challenges do you face at Ada Health?
I think it's a double-edged sword. What's new, exciting, and different, is also very challenging. Mostly, getting used to not seeing patients, connecting and treating people on a daily basis (everything you have in a classical job at a hospital or a clinic) needs some adjustment. Getting used to working in the health-tech environment also requires you to learn a lot of technicalities, terms, systems and understanding all the processes and flows of the company.
What book has had the biggest impact on your career?
I have a couple of books in mind that were quite inspiring. One, Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder, is about a doctor called Paul Farmer. He is an Infectious Diseases specialist working in the United States who has developed an aid project to help the poorest, rural areas of Haiti. That inspired me to join Doctors Without Borders. I've been to Greece in Lesbos, where many refugees are crossing the sea from Turkey to get to Europe. I've been in Brazil, in the state of Roraima, on the border with Venezuela, also helping Venezuelan refugees. I've been in Mozambique, supporting the medical response to a cholera outbreak after the Cyclone Idai that devastated 90% of Beira city.
What's your work playlist?
What would you suggest to someone seeking a new job?
Come with an open mind and be prepared to embrace something new and exciting. If you're really passionate and feel strongly about a job that you're unsure you have the right qualifications, still go forward, apply and do your best. A strong passion and motivation can take you far.
Do you want to work with Gustavo? Check out currently open positions on ACELR8 Jobs.