A Conversation with GB Co-founder, Dr. Duffy

Apr 11, 2022 9:00:00 AM | Medical A Conversation with GB Co-founder, Dr. Duffy

In February, we celebrated our annual GB Week and had the opportunity to chat with GB co-founder, Dr. Duffy Casey. As a successful Hawaii-based OB-GYN, he shares a few tips and tricks on becoming a medical professional, along with how Global Brigades played a crucial part in his success. Check out his professional journey and advice for aspiring medical students...

Introducing Dr. Duffy Casey

Dr. Duffy has been a key player of Global Brigades since the very beginning. As a co-founder of GB, an established OB-GYN in Hawaii, and the founder of Angel Protocol, Dr. Duffy sat down with our live Instagram audience to share his story and offer his invaluable advice.

  • “I am a co-founder of Global Brigades and an OB-GYN in Maui, Hawaii. I work at a community health clinic, which is the only clinic on the island that provides services for insured and un-insured patients. At a federally qualified heath center (FQHC), I take care of the homeless population, immigrants, and prisoners - in addition to those who are employed and insured.”
Dr. Duffy's Medical Inspiration

Dr. Duffy didn't always dream of becoming a physician. Like many, his experiences at a young age shaped his aspirations for his future.
  • “I come from a family of educators but no one had a background in medicine. As a first-generation medical provider, it is interesting, and it comes with its own challenges but that inspiration to pursue a medical profession definitely came from Global Brigades.”
  • “As you go through medical school, your eyes get opened to what these fields of medicine actually do and what the services you actually provide and what the lifestyle is like. The way I looked at medical school going into it was very naïve. What you find in medicine is you need to love the normal everyday stuff, and think what did I really enjoy and can see myself doing all the time. That was an OB-GYN for me.”
Gaining Patient Trust 

Going to the doctor's office can be an overwhelming experience. Dr. Duffy is passionate about taking the time to really listen to his patients, and it pays off.

  • “In medical school, I learned that the average medical professional interrupts the patient in the first 5 seconds and I think it is such an easy friction point to smooth out. Another thing is to ask open-ended questions and just sitting back and listening. That is a way to develop that trust early on and easily.”
Authenticity is Key

Applying to medical school can be nerve-wracking, to say the least. Dr. Duffy aligns with the age-old saying, "be yourself", and we agree!

  • “One thing people get hung up with is that you want them to like you, but the other thing is you should like them. You have so much value, so it is better to be authentic than it is to fill the idea that they are looking for."
  • “Authenticity, when you know yourself and what is important to you - that is what they want to know.”
  • “If the doors close and you don’t get it, it’s okay. Don’t worry, try again. I tried three times.”
Utilize your Experiences 
  • “Participating in Medical Brigades definitely helps with getting into medical school. it is not a golden ticket, but it gives you good perspective, so you have experience to compare and contrast what it is like to practice in resource-limited communities versus communities that have all the resources that they need.”
  • “About 10% of all fourth-year medical students who are pursuing residency positions, at some point went on a Brigade.”

Our interview with Dr. Duffy not only discusses many topics that provides insight for curious aspiring medical professionals, but also touches on how Global Brigades changed his outlook on life. Dr. Duffy truly emphasizes Global Brigades' impact on everyone involved! Watch the full interview here.

Annissa Lee

Written By : Annissa Lee