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Dr Kushwin Rajamani of having a heart

Making the world a better place is what motivates Dr Kushwin Rajamani, whether it’s helping his patients or aligning himself with good causes.

  6 minutes

“I’m a big picture person and I look at systems,” says cardiologist Associate Professor Kushwin Rajamani. “Certainly, I'm super specialised in cardiology where I spend a lot of my time in heart rhythm conditions, but throughout my life, I've also been able to look at the big picture. To look at the system and understand what works well, what doesn't work well, look at the gaps and address those gaps.”

As a specialist in cardiac electrophysiology, Dr Rajamani has a detailed understanding of how small things can have huge ramifications. He knows that a flutter in your heart can, without treatment, lead to a stroke. “The cost of stroke and stroke related care is in the billions of dollars and it's only going to increase,” he points out.

“Coming from an underprivileged background, I always feel that I have a duty to support people who did not have the same opportunities as me,” he adds. “I feel that it is my responsibility. I want to give back and hence the humanitarian arm comes into play.”

When he says “the humanitarian arm”, Dr Rajamani is not just talking about his work. He has set his goals much higher.

Starting out

Dr Rajamani was born into a poor family in Sri Lanka. He finished medical school in Ireland in 2003, and emigrated to Australia in 2004. He completed his basic and advanced physician training in cardiology at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney in 2011, and his fellowship at the prestigious Cleveland Clinic, the #1 ranked cardiology hospital in the USA.

Upon moving to WA, he set up rooms in Perth with assistance from BOQ Specialist. “Many cardiologists operate in groups and therefore risk is shared, but when you want to do something individually, the options are limited. BOQ Specialist has been extremely helpful in establishing my business and putting faith in my capacity and potential. Their support has been incredible in terms of the speed and turnaround times of decisions and getting the job done in a timely way.

“I have also formed excellent relationships with the BOQ Specialist consultants who have helped me so far. They are knowledgeable and are able to communicate things clearly so I can understand. This has made the process much easier for me because I trust them.”

“When I first spoke to Kushwin, he came across as very warm, kind, and gentle,” says BOQ Specialist’s Josh van Bruchem. “And his driving motivation behind growing his practice was primarily for leaving a better world for his children—not for ego. He's very passionate, and very much a philanthropist.”

BOQ Specialist has assisted Dr Rajamani with commercial property and fit-out funding for his practices. “The uniqueness of our offering within self-managed super funds really appealed to him,” says Josh. “When it came to doing renovations within that property, there were complexities in relation to what the SIS Act allows. After a few phone-calls between his accountant and lawyer plus BOQ Specialist’s legal counsel, we were able to ensure a great outcome for all parties.

“But I think the main point of difference for us is around the personalised service we are able to offer him. Kushwin is pretty much on speed dial for me.” 

Leading by example 

Philanthropy has always been important to Dr Rajamani. “I'm a stakeholder in a major foundation in Sri Lanka called the Foundation of Goodness, and I support independently more than 13,000 children per year,” he explains. “Recently I started developing an interest in climate change action.”

But the ‘big picture’ of climate change is an overwhelming problem—so Dr Rajamani started looking at it systemically, probing for the gaps in the system. “I realised if you can prevent deforestation, you can preserve the carbon sink.” He came across The Orangutan Project, and teamed up with them to raise funds to protect 100,000 hectares of Aceh’s ancient Leuser Ecosystem. It is the last place on earth where critically endangered orangutans, elephants, rhinos and tigers coexist in the wild.

“I want to lead by example,” he says. “Partly because I have the means, but also not relying on big organisations or governments. So I lead a project where I do matched funding; if anyone wants to contribute any amount of money, I will match it. Plus, through the process, increase awareness about climate change action. We want to promote conversation about climate change so people can realise the urgency of it.”

While The Orangutan Project has been running for 20 years, Dr Rajamani’s association with them over the past year has reached close to the $400,000 mark. “We are on our way to achieving the million dollar target.” 

You can donate to The Orangutan Project at www.orangutan.org.au/protect-the-acehs-ancient-ecosystem


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