Exclusive Interview: A Decade of Dedication and Innovation at Dr. Smile Medical Group

In 2014, renowned vascular surgeon Dr. Smile made a bold decision to leave the traditional medical system and establish a pioneering medical practice organization in China—Dr. Smile Medical Group. Over the past decade, the group has consistently innovated in the treatment of varicose veins, achieving remarkable success. As they celebrate their tenth anniversary, how has this team navigated its journey, and what are their plans for the future? In this exclusive interview, host Alex engages with Dr. Smile, the founder of Dr. Smile Medical Group, to delve into the significance of their anniversary celebration and its special highlights.

Alex: Dr. Smile, hello! It’s an honor to interview you. As the founder of Dr. Smile Medical Group, what was your initial motivation for starting the group?

Dr. Smile: My initial motivation was quite simple: to ignite the intrinsic motivation of doctors to serve patients. In all our healthcare service models, the doctor’s team should play a leading role because doctors are the ones closest to the patients and can most directly influence treatment outcomes. Therefore, I hoped to establish a doctor-centric healthcare service model in China to provide better medical services to patients.

Alex: Over the past decade, what major challenges and breakthroughs has Dr. Smile Medical Group experienced? Which period do you believe was most crucial for the group’s development?

Dr. Smile: Over these ten years, we have gone through several significant milestones. First, we transitioned from individual expert brands to a team brand. Second, we moved from a light-asset cooperative service model to a medical group model with independently operated chain medical institutions. Third, we gradually built an international brand from a domestic specialty brand. I believe the three years of the pandemic were most critical for our development. Despite substantial financial losses, it propelled our subsequent internationalization and chain development. During the pandemic, we utilized the ample time to gather international industry expert resources and launched the global CHIVA certification and training project.

Alex: What notable achievements has Dr. Smile Medical Group made in the innovation of varicose vein treatment techniques?

Dr. Smile: We were the first doctor team in China to introduce endovenous radiofrequency ablation technology and the first globally to use VR assistance in varicose vein treatment. In 2015, we introduced the CHIVA technique invented by French doctor Professor Franceschi and applied it in China. We continuously improved some technical details, transforming treatments that previously required several days of hospitalization into outpatient treatments needing only one to two hours.

Alex: Will international development be a key focus for Dr. Smile Medical Group in the future? What work has been done so far?

Dr. Smile: Yes, at our tenth anniversary, Dr. Smile Medical Group has developed a complete technical training system and internal management and operation system. We have self-operated medical institutions in five cities across China—Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, and Jinan—under the Sijun Clinic platform. Next, we plan to promote the CHIVA technique globally. We have already established a venous disease center in Ethiopia and plan to open another in the United States, pushing the CHIVA training program there. Subsequently, we aim to expand to Japan, Australia, and other countries.

Alex: Looking ahead to the next decade, what new goals and plans does Dr. Smile Medical Group have?

Dr. Smile: Our mission for the next ten years is very clear: to gather the world’s top venous disease experts and bring the latest varicose vein treatment concepts and technologies to more patients globally.

Alex: Are there any special guests or speakers you particularly look forward to at the celebration? What new perspectives or information will they bring?

Dr. Smile: Although the main focus of this tenth-anniversary academic open day is our own medical team, we will invite some outstanding colleagues to participate in our Sijun Roundtable Forum. This forum will not only be a part of the celebration but will also continue as a brand in the future, bringing new perspectives and information.

Alex: Are there any special segments or programs at the celebration you wish to share with everyone? For example, have you prepared any special speeches or addresses?

Dr. Smile: Yes, I will deliver two main speeches during the academic open day. The first, in the morning’s hemodynamics session, will discuss the future development of the CHIVA technique and how to achieve minimally invasive treatment. The second, in the afternoon’s doctor leadership session, will focus on strategic thinking.

Alex: In your opinion, what special significance does this tenth-anniversary celebration have for the future development of the medical group? What message do you hope to convey through this event?

Dr. Smile: Firstly, the tenth anniversary marks a significant new milestone in the development of Dr. Smile Medical Group. Through this celebration, we aim to clarify our vision and mission further, reinforcing our values of becoming a global leader in varicose vein specialty treatment. Secondly, we hope to convey that through international cooperation and exchange, we will integrate into the international community of venous disease treatment, innovating and exploring alongside global experts. We are committed to shifting from traditional primary treatment models to modern, personalized, and highly precise treatment models.

Alex: Thank you very much, Dr. Smile, for sharing in such detail. This tenth-anniversary celebration is not only a significant milestone but also a new starting point for the future development of Dr. Smile Medical Group.

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