Chit Chat: Dr Michael Mol

2011-04-16 15:52

Is Hello Doctor your way of reminding viewers that you are a trained doctor and not just a pretty face?
Nope, Hello Doctor is about educating, entertaining and inspiring people to live their best life;

the kind of life that you can live when you’re at your most healthy, most energised and most motivated.

Have you always practised as a doctor alongside TV presenting?
Though I’ve maintained my registration and continue to earn CME points (continuing medical education), for the past few years I’ve not “pressed the flesh” and have not done any clinical medicine.

Miss it madly, but I have always been involved in medicine in one way or the other – most recently as the CEO of a wellness company (before moving down to Cape Town for Hello Doctor).

Which one do you see as a viable career? Medicine or TV?
Both are viable – as a practising medical doctor you get the opportunity to have a significant impact on individual lives, as a media person the potential is to impact on many more – in a less personal way of course – but at the same time there’s the risk that media becomes a self-glorifying trip that makes a lot of noise and very little difference, think Paris Hilton.

Do you think it’s possible to dispense real medical advice without actually examining people?

The secret to a healthy life is not treating illness, which is what so often requires that physical examination, or avoiding sickness, but promoting health and being pro-active about it.

 If an individual is not sick, that doesn’t mean that they’re healthy – it just means that they’re not sick.

I might sound ludicrous – but health is not a default setting, it’s something we need to consciously work on and work toward every day.

How different is Hello Doctor to House Call of Dr Victor Ramathesele on SABC2 and The Doctors on M-Net Series?
There are elements that will naturally be similar, but what Hello Doctor brings will be a “best of” approach – incorporating a number of aspects that have been popular with other shows – a bit of reality TV, with a touch of celebrity, an exposé on the latest advancements in medicine, a talkshow setting for a panel of experts and an examination room, an inspirational moment with those among us who are facing death to the lighter moments of before and after of anti-ageing medicine.

In conjunction with the TV show is a website that allows viewers to interact with the experts after the show.

Do you think we’re all becoming hypochondriacs with the explosion of all these medical shows?
Nope, we’re becoming informed – realising that our health is our responsibility.

The biggest challenge, however, is Google – plenty of information on any subject any time, but how do you know the information is reliable and trustworthy.

Everything that we feature on Hello Doctor will be vetted by doctors and can be trusted.

What time do you go to bed at night and when are you up considering

you do a weekly breakfast show (Expresso), a lifestyle show (Top

Billing) and now a Sunday morning show (Hello Doctor)?
I’m no longer actively involved with Top Billing, so that’s one less responsibility – Hello Doctor is a weekly show on Sunday evenings and our studio is in the same building as the Expresso Studio – so apart from getting up at 3am and trying to get to bed by 9pm, it’s very do-able.

What has been your secret to longevity in the industry?
Not trying to be anyone else, or live up to anyone else’s expectations.

What you see is what you get, and if you don’t like it, you’re more than welcome to change the channel.

How would you like to be remembered?
A husband to one, father to three, friend to a few, stranger to many, but above all a child of God – with the express purpose of making Him famous, not me.

How have you managed to do so much in the industry, and still remain a committed family man?
Funny you say that.

I think I could’ve done so much more in the industry, but was never willing to sacrifice my family for it ... best decision I ever made especially since my role as a dad is measured in hugs and not in audience ratings.

What’s the one thing you wish you had never done?
There are many things I wished I’d never done, I just can’t remember them.

What’s done is done, you have to keep moving forward ... that, and the fact that I’m a victim of God’s grace – as we all are.

Do you look forward to the day SABC3 becomes Michael Mol Channel with your face dominating programming like this? What is your next big move?
I look forward to the day when Michael Mol gets to make a little noise and a lot of difference, right now I fear the opposite is true!

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