January 27, 2023

If You’re Not Encountering Challenges, There’s No Real Change: Dr. Kim Tranquada from HAEW | Episode 31 of Twist of Fate

If You’re Not Encountering Challenges, There’s No Real Change: Dr. Kim Tranquada from HAEW | Episode 31 of Twist of Fate

Dr. Kim Tranquada is the CEO of Healthcare Alliance for an Equitable World. As a practicing physician for more than 25 years, she’s had the privilege of working in some of the finest institutions in the world. She’s also lived life on the other side, where people could barely access adequate care, let alone the bells and whistles of all technology available today. 

She sat down with host Douglas Younger III to talk about how her enterprise is using telehealth to level the playing field. She also touches on how all entrepreneurs need to be ready to jump in the fire, even when they may not always feel ready for the war. 

Vast Chasms 

When it comes down to how different people are treated in the healthcare system, the gulf between them can be wider than people ever imagined. Before COVID, it was slightly easier to ignore in America, because at least there were hospitals available that people could be referred to from local clinics. Now, with nearly every healthcare professional strained to the breaking point, it’s harder for people to turn a blind eye. 

Purpose and Mission 

The goal of the Healthcare Alliance for an Equitable World is to open doors for everyone. This is a truly incredible mission, one that is working against everything from profit-driven companies to distrust in the medical community. Dr. Tranquada can’t make more healthcare professionals, but she can use their skills more efficiently. 

To do so, she’s leaning on telehealth to open access. This concept is not new in the US, but it was practically unheard of in other countries before the pandemic. Physicians are being asked to treat universal disorders, like hypertension and diabetes, as well as local disorders, where pneumonia might be the leading killer of children in certain areas. She’s appealing to the gig economy of the world, offering physicians another job — one that helps them give back in life-changing ways. 

Healthcare professionals have to solve for any number of challenges along the way: How far will a person have to travel to access care? What can be done if they can’t afford the required medication? How can the staff at HAEW even convince another country that they have the skills and intention to really help their people (and not just try to change everything)? None of this is easy, particularly when you consider the scale of what she’s trying to do. Of course, as she points out, if you’re not having problems, then you’re probably not actually changing anything. 

The Life of an Entrepreneur 

Dr. Kim Tranquada said a lot of things that resonated with Douglas Younger III, the CEO of 3STEPS4WARD, and a lot of it had to do with pushing herself even when she didn’t want to. As the CEO, she realizes that it’s her job to take on the toughest tasks, standing up for the company and pushing it to the next level. 

Right now, the team is small, the missions are small. They’re working in countries like the Philippines to sand out the details of telehealth. She has to prove that what she’s offering is both scalable and sustainable. It’s a lot to have on her shoulders, but she also took the job with both eyes open. To her point, Younger reminds everyone listening that the time to get off the bench is right now. No matter how scary it is or what you’re trying to accomplish, you’ll never get results if you never get started. 


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