Dalhousie Medicine N.B. Providing Career Diversity for Physicians in the Saint John Region

Dr. Colin Rouse - DalMedNB

Dr. Colin Rouse spends his days treating patients in the emergency department at the Saint John Regional Hospital – the largest tertiary care hospital in New Brunswick. Outside the emergency department, he works as a unit head for Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick (DMNB). As a Saint John Region native, he shares how choosing to stay in his hometown after completing his residency in family and emergency medicine has allowed him to build a rewarding career, full of opportunity.

“Being in Saint John during my training gave me exposure to academic medicine which led to my involvement with teaching at the medical school,” he said.

He explained how there are opportunities everywhere for medical graduates, but the connections he built in Saint John during his time in school allowed him a strong footing for a successful career.

“I definitely had a choice on where I wanted to go,” he said. “There’s lots of things that made Saint John more attractive to me. Throughout my training I made connections in the medical community and was able to see firsthand the positive work environment. I was able to build relationships with different specialists and emergency doctors. It’s a community-centered environment here, which is great.”

Staying in the Saint John Region also provided Dr. Rouse with an opportunity to take a position as an Academic Emergency Physician.

“On top of my clinical work, I mentor medical students as well as residents during their clinical rotations in Emergency Medicine,” he said.

With the region’s unique health cluster, which includes the medical school next to the hospital, Dr. Rouse shares the connections and opportunity he has gained from working with DMNB as the Unit Head for the PIER 1 and 2 Units (Positioning, Integration, Evaluation, Research and Review). These two units make up one month of the students’ curriculum and are delivered at key times in their training as they make the transition from mostly classroom learning to full time clinical learning in hospitals throughout New Brunswick.

“With the help of the amazing staff at DMNB we facilitate hands on learning through high fidelity simulation, lectures, and skills workshops with physicians from various specialties, as well as other allied health providers,” Dr. Rouse explained.  “Having an Academic Emergency Department in Saint John that is so closely affiliated with the medical school offers many other opportunities for people seeking to work as an Emergency Physician in our region. Just a few of the possibilities include Research, Department Management, Quality Improvement, Residency Program Support, Point of Care Ultrasound Teaching, Simulation Training, and Undergraduate Medical Education.”

In addition, Dr. Rouse shared how Saint John also offers the only level one trauma center in New Brunswick, which provides a challenge of learning more in depth cases.

“There is so much variety and opportunity to become involved in the medical community in Saint John. During residency training you are able to learn directly from specialists in many fields,” he said. “In bigger centres, that is not always the case.  All these things played a role in why I chose to train and stay in Saint John.”

Outside the hospital, lab, and classroom, it’s the balanced lifestyle Dr. Rouse’s hometown provided for him that was an added bonus to his fulfilling career.

“The Bay of Fundy and river system, the trails, and lots of great outdoor activities for families,” he said. If you want to raise your kids in a place with those opportunities, I think, the Saint John Region is a great choice.”

Envision Saint John: The Regional Growth Agency is working in collaboration with Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick to engage the next generation of physicians in our region and province.

“Increased access to health care is a necessity for current and future residents of the region,” explained Craig Wilkins, Director of Growth at Envision Saint John. 

“By bringing strategic partners together and developing key collaborative initiatives, we are focused on retaining and attracting medical professionals throughout the region.”

Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick is expanding their undergraduate medical education seat offering in 2023, with 10 additional students being accepted into the program – for a total of 40 per year.

“Dalhousie’s Faculty of Medicine is thrilled for the opportunity to grow their contribution to the health care needs of New Brunswickers in collaboration with the provincial government, University of New Brunswick, Horizon Health Network, and other organizations with a shared goal of delivering exceptional health care to the community,” said Melissa Budd, Director of Operations, Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick.

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