Congratulations to the recipients of this year’s BCCFP family physician awards
My Family Doctor Award
This unique award provides British Columbians with the opportunity to recognize and honour their own family doctors, celebrating the doctor-patient relationship that supports good health.
Fraser Health: Dr. Nick Petropolis (New Westminster)
“He is so passionate in finding ways to help his patients. He does not just hand out prescriptions for every little issue. He always spends his time helping find ways to cope and get to the bottom of what the patient is saying. He is truly a beautiful soul and cares deeply to helping his patients recover in real time, with real compassion.”
Interior Health: Dr. Leona Harries (Penticton)
“Dr. Leona Harries is the most caring, giving human being and doctor I have ever had the privilege to know. She took on both my parents as they were dying, mom from cancer, dad from pulmonary fibrosis. There are no words to express what she did for my mom and dad and us as a family throughout the most horrific two years plus of our lives. Dr. Harries is the embodiment of what it means to be a physician.”
Island Health: Dr. Kevin Martin (Nanaimo)
“I have a rare disease. For almost 10 years my family doctor searched for answers. He referred me to specialist after specialist. I was worried that he may have put his reputation on the line more than once by sending me to so many specialists and for so many tests. Turns out I had had this rare disease for 25 years! It was life changing to finally have a name for my condition after many years of being told I was depressed.”
Northern Health: Dr. Bent Hougesen (Hazelton)
“Dr. Bent Hougesen has built a very strong relationship with both his patients and his community and specifically to the large demographic of First Nations people that make their home in Hazelton, BC. In his practice, he has grown the confidence of First Nations people with exhibiting an understanding of the balance between western medical care and the role of families in the various aspects of dealing with births, illness and end of life. Dr. Hougesen exemplifies what we as patients look for in a physician.”
Vancouver Coastal Health: Dr. Kelsey Kozoriz (Vancouver)
“I am so pleased to nominate Dr. Kelsey Kozoriz for her outstanding care of four generations of my family, from my 97-year-old mother to my preschool grandchildren, my husband and I in our 60s, and our children and their spouses in their 30s. I am greatly comforted by the knowledge that my family members are in her good hands, as they deal with a wide range of health issues, some typical for their stages of development, others more complicated due to family history, such as with breast cancer, genetic concerns and mental health challenges.”
First Five Years of Practice – Dr. Terri Aldred
This award highlights an exceptional family physician in the early stage of his or her career.
“Terri has not only been an inspiring mentor as a strong female physician, but she has also shown me the true meaning of being an advocate and voice for your patients and community… although she has only been in practice for a few short years, she has taken on leadership roles in her community as well as for Indigenous health in the province. In addition to all of this, she is also the much-loved Program Director of the UBC Indigenous Family Medicine Program where she works incredibly hard to make sure we become caring, compassionate, socially-minded family physicians.”
Innovations in Primary Care – CHANGE BC
This award recognizes a family doctor or team working on local innovations in practice or health care delivery that improve patient, family or community care.
“CHANGE BC is a patient medical home model, the first of its kind in BC, that includes a Dietitian and Kinesiologist as key members of teams led by family physicians to provide customized, made in BC, evidence-based lifestyle supports for patients. These exceptional physician leaders have partnered with Metabolic Syndrome Canada, a nationally recognized, evidence-based organization linked with top academic leads from six Canadian universities to bring the best science forward in the development of an optimal model to support GPs in addressing metabolic syndrome.”
Learn more about these exceptional family physicians.
Dr. Terri Aldred
Dr. Terri Aldred is Carrier from the Tl’Azt’En Nation located north of Fort St. James. She is the Site Director for the Indigenous Family Medicine Program, family physician for Carrier Sekani Family Services, the Medical Director for the Prince George Foundry Clinic, and the Indigenous Lead for the Rural Coordination Centre of BC. She is passionate about Indigenous health, physician well-being, and medical education.
The Innovations in Primary Care award recognizes five family physicians from the Pacific Northwest Division of Family Practice ((Houston, Smithers, Terrace and Haida Gwaii) who are leads in CHANGE BC: Drs. Jocelyn Black, Brenda Huff, Greg Linton, Matthew Menard, Wouter Morkel and Onuora Odoh. CHANGE (Canadian Health Advanced by Nutrition and Graded Exercise) BC, is a team-based approach of integrating nutrition and exercise interventions into primary care networks. By adding dietitians and kinesiologists into primary care settings to work collaboratively alongside family doctors, patients can be supported through an effective yet personalized program. CHANGE BC is lead by an experienced group of researchers, health professionals, and health administrators collaborating to implement an innovative approach to treating patients with metabolic syndrome.
Dr. Leona Harries
Dr. Leona Harries graduated from the University of Calgary Medical School in 1988 and completed a Rotating Internship at St Thomas Hospital and Medical Center in Akron, Ohio. Since 1990, she and her husband, Dr. Jeff Harries, have shared a family medicine practice in Penticton. Third partner and friend, Dr. Colwyn Wren, joined them in 1997. Dr. Harries combines her life as a family physician with raising a family and operating a small, three-acre vineyard at her home. She describes her life as a family physician as rich and highly rewarding and would like to thank her patients for “their trust in me, and the honour they pay me by allowing me to care for them.”
Dr. Bent Hougesen
Dr. Bent Hougesen has been a family physician in Hazelton for the past 25 years, where his practice has included emergency care, obstetrics, anesthesia, inpatient and outpatient care, community medicine and medical education. He established a successful family practice clinic in 2005 and has also developed the popular “Starting Smart” perinatal program. To make a difference and be helpful to others has always been most rewarding and gratifying for him. Currently a UBC clinical professor, Dr. Hougesen was previously the Family Medicine Residency Program Director at the University of Calgary (Foothills Hospital). Internationally he has actively promoted Family Medicine in the People’s Republic of China and the Philippines.
Dr. Kelsey Kozoriz
Dr. Kelsey Kozoriz has a diverse practice that spans newborn care to geriatrics at Forward Care Medical in East Vancouver. She has been in practice for seven years and has more recently become involved in residency teaching through UBC, where she completed both her medical degree and residency training. Dr. Kozoriz has a special interest in obesity medicine and the use of evidence-based, therapeutic nutrition in treating chronic diseases such as diabetes. She is passionate about using group medical visits and supporting her patients in achieving their best health through exercise, nutrition, and mental wellness. Dr. Kozoriz is a diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine.
Dr. Kevin Martin
Dr. Kevin Martin has been a family physician in Nanaimo for the past 10 years. He is also involved in community work, seeing patients at the John Barsby Wellness Centre as well as in his office practice. In his clinical work, he appreciates the opportunity to diagnose medical conditions and coordinate care while understanding each patient’s history and life story. He also appreciates the ability to change lives for the better and help people to realize the opportunity within their own lives. Dr. Martin is currently a Doctors of BC Representative Assembly delegate, and previously served as chair of the Oceanside Division of Family Practice.
Dr. Nick Petropolis
Dr. Nick Petropolis works in New Westminster, splitting time between his office and residential care practice. The son of a family physician, Dr. Petropolis grew up in Halifax, and witnessed the positive impact on his community from a passionate, caring full-service family practice. This influenced his practice style greatly, as Dr. Petropolis strives to care for patients “the right way, not the easy way: with patience, empathy and as a partner in their health journey.” Outside of practice he is a proud partner and father, dragging his kids to the playground and the occasional house call, just like his own father did.