Disrupting the Health Sector - Founder Dr. Johnny Walker

In the searing Western Australia Outback heat of approximately 48 degrees, Dr. Walker provided care to 48 pregnant women a day -- from the back of a truck. This is where the initial entrepreneurial thoughts spurred to the mind of Dr. Walker, leading to the highly successful international telemedicine practice "Global Diagnostics." The thorough care, passion and selfless acts expressed by Dr. Walker throughout his mission reveal his ambition to leverage global healthcare to the highest quality.

On the cusp of going the full entrepreneurial circle, health founder Dr. Walker has joined Dublin Startup Grind to take us on his adventure right through to his latest visions to disrupt the medical sector. Dr. Walker is currently coupling his medical background with the tools of technology to prepare a patient-centric care model. Similar to Uber and Airbnb’s strategies Dr. Walker aims to unleash a dormant resource of family care with "Jeanga."  

The Beginning (1995): Resolving Inequality.

How the "just an accident" idea formed:

On November 11, 1995, a scenario unfolded and Dr. Walker found himself diagnosing a serious pregnancy complication in the sub-optimal conditions. The overwhelming feeling of isolation and injustices for the women being treated by Dr. Walker, lead him to believe there had to be a better way to provide healthcare to this Outback community.

Dr. Walker started to question why he was in the Outback and thought of the wonderful opportunities he was so fortunate to have experienced which these people would not.

Dr. Walker describes himself first and foremost as a clinician, not as a businessman -- allowing for the initial glimpse of light to be shed on his personal sacrifices.

In the process of waiting for an American Visa to go to Stanford, Dr. Walker set up care "by the best of the best" practitioners in the world for patients in Western Australia. Unheard of globally, these patients were receiving diagnostic results within 24 hours of a scan.

The unnerving feeling of isolation combined with the support of his boss at Stanford resulted in the forming of a digital link. Dr. Walker created a network sending digital imagery of the scans taken in the Outback to Cambridge and Stanford.

With the arrival of Fiber optics and the web as we know it today, Dr. Walker knew there was no holding him back. As the product blossomed, the healthcare being provided was better than some of that found in both Perth and Sydney. 

The Move to Survive (2006):

Through fear of a disruption to the "happy healthy ecosystem" of the Australian healthcare system, Dr. Walker’s peers lobbied against his process of diagnostic care. The new law formed against his practices coupled with the publicly listed companies wanting a share of Dr. Walkers new found market caused Dr. Walker’s volume driven business to the point of "do or die."

Bouncing Back From A Tremendous Defeat:

True to his admirable passion and care for others, Dr. Walker overcame this pivotal point by seeking unmet demand that his "magic" team and technology capabilities could resolve. After meeting several CEOs of Health and Wellbeing centers across England, Dr. Walker instantly found a new place in which he could solve the MRI delays of three to four years faced by the NH (PubMed).

Now, for the first time in the UK, you could receive both a scan and diagnostic results on the same day - previously "unheard of."

Following on, Dr. Walker was invited to Ireland where his speech and the service he was capable of providing caught the attention of VHI Swiftcare. After a day at the Grand National, Dr. Walker struck a deal to merge his practice with VHI Swiftcare encouraging him to settle in Ireland.                                                  

Dr. Walker had finally received the much-deserved respect for his hard work.

2017 – A New Beginning: Improving Healthcare As We Know It Today.

‘‘I knew exactly what I wanted to do."

The next idea stemmed from Dr. Walker believing that if the medical sector did not disrupt from within, it was going to fall behind the trends that emerging technologies were offering. For this reason, he took a three-year deep dive into discovering the different emerging technologies available. The new millennial "on demand" trends combined with his knowledge of practice, focused Dr. Walker on plans to build a resource surrounding "the Jeanga warrior" of the home. 

Product Formation: "Shaving 5years of the process."

This time Dr. Walker hopes to achieve his new goal in five years less than his previous goals. Dr. Walker believes he can do this as a result of the lessons he has learned. Some of the advice Dr. Walker offers as a health founder is to be modest in market estimations, "as the market will smack you in the face."

Another lesson learned that Dr. Walker will take forward, is the necessary resilience and discipline to structuring a disruptive strategy -- advice recommendable to any entrepreneur.

Growth And Scaling A New Product:

In order to gain finance for this new product, Dr. Walker organized a closed invitation to invest in his idea with the hope of achieving half a million euros. Again a reflection of both Dr. Walker’s modesty and phenomenal previous achievements.

He was humbled to secure one million euros as every member of his Stanford class accepted his offer, each enclosing fifty thousand euros.

The importance of his previous team’s infrastructure has provided him with an awareness of the network he needs to build. This happens to involve not taking on any "rookies" this time at the start. On this project he wants to "go big" and having only secured the funding two Sundays before he met with us, it will be exciting to watch Jeanga grow.

Dr. Walker says himself had you of asked him six months ago the predictions of success for this idea -- he would have said that he was "90 percent likely to fail." However, now he believes he is 60 percent likely to succeed a positive sign of the potential growth ahead.

To Conclude:

I have been inspired by the presence of Dr. Walker and cannot wait to see the unfolding international success of "Jeanga." Dr. Walker’s desire is to help those around him.

The key take home note of the evening was to have a simple goal and to do everything you can to achieve it. This will undoubtedly require great discipline, use of emerging technologies as tools, and a disruptive strategy- ultimately the Dr. Johnny Walkers secret formula to success.

Why not join us:

On April 25th at 6.30pm

Startup Grind Dublin hosts Grainne Walsh (Metalman Brewing).

For more details: