Mathias has worked at Diaverum Sweden as a Nephrologist and Medical Director since 2017. In the following interview, he tells us about his journey in Diaverum.

Today he is the Country Medical Director for Diaverum Sweden & Head of Research and Science for Diaverum AB as well. In his story, you can read why he chose the profession of Nephrologist, why he moved to Sweden and how it is to work at Diaverum.

Which is your origin, and home country and how come you did end up in Sweden?

I grew up near Köln in Germany, but I also have roots in Belgium through my grandmother. It was love that once brought me to Sweden. My love for the country, the people and the culture motivated me to become a Swedish citizen.
Today, I have a strong Swedish, German, and European identity.
After medical studies at universities in Berlin and Witten/Herdecke and internships in South Africa, the United States, and Sweden, I completed my specialist training in internal medicine and nephrology in Sweden.

Why did you choose to be a physician?

When I was younger, I envisioned a long time to choose an artistic profession. Imagine how surprised I was, when I found myself filing an application for medical studies at the age of 22. I believe the decision emerged during a time when I worked as a personal assistant to people with functional variations.
I grew so curious about the fantastic ways of human beings – I wanted to know more. Maybe my childhood has made its mark as well.
As the son of a village vicar, I was at an early age taught to respect and love all human beings, regardless of their background.

Why did you choose to be a specialist in renal care?

Early in my career, I realized that I liked the long-term patient contact that is typical for internal medicine. While it was a coincidence that my first clinical placement was in nephrology, I immediately grew fond of the speciality. As a nephrologist, I have many different roles, from long-term primary care contact for dialysis patients to expert consultants in intensive care.
I love to be close to my patients, to try to bring hope and enable a fulfilling life for people who may find themselves in the sometimes difficult circumstances that come with kidney disease and dialysis treatment.

Why did you choose Diaverum as your employer?

After many years in public health care, I was curious how a private employer solves the challenges in health care. In Sweden, it is the same tax-financed healthcare that is provided by Diaverum and by the regions in Sweden. I believe that diversity among healthcare providers can contribute to improving the quality of care. As one of the world´s largest dialysis and renal care providers, Diaverum maintains the highest quality standards.

What is the difference between working at Diaverum and other workplaces?

When I started working at Diaverum I was pleasantly surprised by the flexibility and creative potential of the company. The distance between the management team and employees is short. This means that good ideas among employees can easily be noticed and realized. Diaverum offers many ways to develop your working skills. Maybe my career may serve as an example of how commitment opens up possibilities of increased responsibility.

Do you have a lot of contacts with colleagues in other countries who have a similar role as you have?

I discuss leadership and medical quality with other Country Medical Directors in Diaverum around the globe. We have a fine connection that includes colleagues from 4 different continents and I appreciate the helpfulness and willingness to solve similar issues and problems. Diaverum is good at utilizing employees’ skills and several Country Medical Directors have additional tasks within the Company. As Diaverum Sweden is a smaller organization than Diaverum in other countries, I can maintain close daily contact with my patients despite my different leadership assignments.

Tell us about your position as Head of Science & Research.

As Corporate Head of Science and Research, I lead the Diaverum Corporate Scientific Team, which currently consists of 8 researchers from different countries. Most of them have additional tasks as Corporate Nursing or Medical Directors or other management responsibilities within Diaverum. Several are professors or in other ways connected to Universities. The Scientific Team conducts its studies within Diaverum, coordinates studies that are started in various country organizations, and collaborates with external partners in joint research projects. Together with CMO Fernando Macario and the Corporate Legal Office, I approve applications for research projects that involve Diaverum clinics. In 2021, we have been able to increase the number of scientific publications related to Diaverum, compared to previous years.

What is the latest in research where Diaverum is involved?

We have a large number of ongoing research projects within Diaverum. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have had a special focus on understanding the importance of COVID-19 for patients with chronic kidney disease. We have contributed to several scientific publications on this topic that are frequently quoted internationally. Another area where Diaverum is prominent is the digitalization process and the integration of artificial intelligence in healthcare to enable people with chronic kidney disease to live fulfilling life. The development takes place in close collaboration with the Corporate Scientific Team and experts in the field of artificial intelligence (AI). We focus on adapting care to increase the quality of life. Life-enhancing renal care requires scientifically developed goals and quality criteria based on patients´ own experiences.

What is the best thing about your work at Diaverum?

I wake up every day looking forward to going to work and with a curiosity about today´s challenges. I love the daily contact I have with people, patients and employees. I enjoy the solidarity within our team and I feel that we, despite the sometimes big challenges, can do it - together.

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