Maria Vasconcelos

Port Charlotte, Florida

Medsol Clinical Research Center

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Maria Vasconcelos, founder of Medsol Clinical Research Center, moved to the United States from her birthplace of Portugal when she was 12. She earned her nursing degree and went to work monitoring pharmaceutical clinical trials across the country. "I started to get tired of the travel," she said. "I saw there wasn't much research going on in Port Charlotte so I talked to some local physicians about combining my research experience with their medical supervision."

Vasconcelos launched Medsol in 2009 and it had its first clinical trial by 2010. "Medsol is a stand alone site," she explained. "We work with different doctors and diseases, and both the physicians and the patients come here. We adhere stringently to the FDA clinical research requirements and provide the best clinical practice possible which means we provide clean data to the pharmaceutical companies. We have great oversight because those things sometimes get overlooked in a busy medical office."

Vasconcelos cares deeply about the patient experience at Medsol. "We provide care the old fashioned way," she said. "Our goal is to provide innovative treatments the old fashioned way. When you call, you get a person, not an automated system. We have a line open 24/7 if there's a problem, and it's me that answers it. We make it nice and simple for our patients."

Vasconcelos's advice for aspiring entrepreneurs doesn't revolve around business principles. "Follow your dreams," she said. "Do things right. I'm a big believer in what goes around comes around. If you do good, it will come around to you."

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