More than 350 British Columbians took the time to nominate family doctors from across the province. We heard stories of kindness, leadership, creativity, community engagement, unwavering support for patients and colleagues, and life-changing care delivered by family physicians.

Without exception, the nominations were full of admiration and gratitude, making clear what an incredible difference family doctors make in the lives of their patients.

Congratulations to the recipients of the 2022 BCCFP awards!

  • BC Family Physician of the Year: Dr. Karin Kausky

    Dr. Karin Kausky is co-chair of the Sea to Sky Division of Family Practice and has practiced family medicine in Whistler, BC since 1993. According to her peers, Dr. Kausky is a skilled physician, an active community member, and an invaluable resource for younger family physicians. “Her example motivates all of us to make our own contributions to the social fabric of Whistler. When Dr. Kausky asks for help on a community issue, it’s impossible to say no to someone who has given so much herself,” says one of her colleagues who nominated her for the 2022 BC Family Physician of the Year Award.

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    After graduating with an MD from the University of Toronto, Dr. Kausky completed her Family Practice residence at the University of Western Ontario.

    She holds a diploma in Sports Medicine from the Canadian Association of Sport and Exercise Medicine and is Medical Director of the Canadian National Ski Cross Team. She was also the Chief Medical Officer for Women’s Alpine Events at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics.

    In 2019 Dr. Kausky formed the Whistler Primary Care Task Force to find a way to attract and retain more family physicians providing comprehensive care in Whistler and ensure continued access to family physicians for all Whistler residents.

    As a result of her advocacy and collaboration with key community groups, Dr. Kausky co-founded the Whistler 360 Health Collaborative Society—a team-based, patient-centric community care centre.

    When the pandemic began in 2020, Dr. Kausky showed her strength as both a family physician and community leader by sitting on several local and regional committees and ensuring vulnerable populations were taken care of. She advocated for the underhoused and homeless, individuals who lack family and support systems, and individuals experiencing mental health or substance use issues.

    Pulling from her experiences throughout the pandemic, Dr. Kausky also delivered a TED talk in 2021 discussing the power of social prescription and demonstrating the collaboration and teamwork needed to manage COVID-19.

    In 2022 Dr. Kausky received the Whistler Citizen of the Year Award in recognition of her impact on the community.

  • My Family Doctor Award: Dr. Allison Ferg (Island Health)

    According to one of the nominators who put Dr. Allison Ferg forward for the 2022 My Family Doctor Award, “There has been no single person who has had a greater positive influence on our family.” Dr. Ferg graduated with a medical degree from the University of Manitoba in 1984

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    After graduation, she left the cold winters of Manitoba behind for a rotating internship at the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria, BC. Shortly after, she opened her family practice with mentors and office colleagues, Dr. Frances Adey and the late Dr. Jane Wright.

    Since then, Dr. Ferg has continued to provide comprehensive, longitudinal care to Victoria residents for the past 36 years and has also been a family medicine residency preceptor.

    With a passion for family practice obstetrics, Dr. Ferg has delivered thousands of babies, including some babies of the babies she had previously delivered – making her an official “granddoctor”.

    “She has an incredible clinical mind and knows the evidence for her recommendations,” said the nominator. “She will not steer me wrong, and she will never make me feel embarrassed for asking about my health.”

  • My Family Doctor Award: Dr. Anis Lakha (Vancouver Coastal Health)

    According to one of the nominators who put Dr. Anis Lakha forward for the 2022 My Family Doctor Award, “I not only value her for how she interacts and treats her patients, but also because she works constantly to help the community. She is incredible. Dr. Lakha has practiced family medicine on the North Shore for over 30 years. She runs a full-service family practice with a specialist interest in palliative care.

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    Graduating from Sheffield Medical School 35 years ago, she has seen the face of primary care change over the course of her practice. Despite today’s challenges, Dr. Lakha continues to receive immense satisfaction when providing longitudinal care to patients and their families.

    Her proudest moments have been watching patients grow from babies to adults, and then bring their own children to her practice.

    Over 20 years ago, Dr. Lakha began getting involved with palliative care. After undertaking further training at Cardiff University, she returned from the UK and became a significant presence in the palliative care community on the North Shore.

    She now serves as a director for the North Shore Hospice and Palliative Project and has developed a successful palliative support program called “Every Day Counts”. The program is thriving under Vancouver Coastal Health with its multi-pronged approach to provide education, wellness and counselling services to palliative patients and families on the North Shore.

  • My Family Doctor Award: Dr. Marylu Loewen (Fraser Health)

    Dr. Marylu Loewen graduated from medical school at the National University of Asuncion, Paraguay. Following a postgraduate internship, she worked as a GP in a rural setting before immigrating to Canada. In 2021, Dr. Loewen successfully finished UBC’s Family Medicine program. Now, Dr. Loewen practices family medicine in a clinic in Abbotsford BC, where she is working to build a multigenerational patient panel.

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    Her motivation as a family physician is largely driven by patient interactions, especially when a patient ends a visit with the line, “I already feel better by just talking to you.”

    One of Dr. Loewen’s nominators struggled with a nasal issue that was misdiagnosed as nasal polyps since childhood. After decades of disordered breathing, prescription medications, decongestants, asthma, and allergy medications, Dr. Loewen’s reassessment of the issue provided a solution that would give the patient a new outlook on life.

    “Dr. Loewen picked up on the word “presumed” and dug into the backstory,” says the 2022 My Family Doctor Award nominator. “She was committed to exploring if there was a solution. It has and will continue to profoundly impact my life in ways that I have yet to discover.”

  • My Family Doctor Award: Dr. Jaco Strydom (Northern Health)

    Dr. Jaco Strydom runs a family practice in Terrace, BC and is actively involved in his community. He is also the Past Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors for the Pacific Northwest Division of Family Practice and the Chair of the Terrace Child Development Centre. “I do not think anyone works harder than Dr. Strydom,” said one of the nominees who put his name forward for the 2022 My Family Doctor Award. “He works extremely long hours and is constantly giving back to his patients, his community and to the northwest.”

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    In 2007 Dr. Strydom founded the Northwest Therapeutic Equestrian Association, a non-profit organization providing equestrian programs to individuals facing mental, emotional and physical challenges.

    In 2015, Dr. Strydom played a central role in a setting up a women’s wellness clinic with a group of local obstetrical service providers. The Women’s Wellness Group was created in response to a gap in the care for women experiencing high risk pregnancies. At present, Dr. Strydom helps run the clinic to provide improved access and care for pregnant women in the northwest.

    In 2020, the Women’s Wellness Group was recognized for its impact after receiving the BC Rural Health Award of Excellence for Team-based Rural Maternity Care. In addition to his role with the clinic, Dr. Strydom has spent a significant portion of his profession delivering babies at the Memorial Mills Hospital (MMH).

    In 2020 Dr. Strydom received the Pacific Northwest Spirit Award for excellence in primary care and the lifetime achievement Spirit Award in 2021. These awards are two of a growing list of accolades, including the BCCFP College Coin Award that he won in 2018.

  • My Family Doctor Award: Dr. Linda O'Neill (Interior Health)

    Dr. Linda O’Neill’s nominators told us, “She has the human touch that is missing in so many of life’s daily interactions. My senior parents still see her, and she empowers them to navigate their health care needs and solutions. She also sees my sister and her children, and is equally versed in post-natal, childhood and mental health issues. She is so intelligent, and so kind, and supports everyone she encounters.”

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    Dr. O’Neill completed medical school at the University of Toronto in 1989 and moved onto the University of Western Ontario to complete her family medicine training in 1992. She practiced family medicine in Toronto until 2004, before relocating to Kelowna with her family.

    She is passionate about providing longitudinal care for the many interconnected and extended families of patients that make up her practice in Kelowna. Over the past two years, Dr. O’Neill’s standard of care has been exemplary. At the start of the pandemic, she pivoted to a new model of care to best assist her patients in navigating the health care system and support their physical and psychological needs, especially those struggling with mental health challenges.

  • First Five Years of Practice Award: Dr. Sasha Langille-Rowe

    According to her peers, Dr. Sasha Langille-Rowe is an exceptional colleague who has shown great promise in the early years of her career. “She demonstrates an amazing level of empathy to her patients and colleagues, and comports herself in a kind and professional manner at all times,” said one of the colleagues who put Dr. Langille-Rowe forward for the 2022 First Five Years of Practice Award. “We are lucky to have her in our community.”

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    Dr. Langille-Rowe began her practice in 2018 after graduating from the UBC Rural Family Practice program in Terrace, BC.

    After covering a maternity leave, Dr. Langille-Rowe quickly established her own community practice including working in the office, as a hospitalist with her patients and in the ER.

    She is passionate about addictions medicine and has left a positive mark on her community through advocacy and leadership.  Dr. Langille-Rowe was selected to help establish an Opiate Agonist Clinic (OAT) in Terrace and has since provided weekly community OAT clinics and educational support to the Mills Memorial Hospital (MMH) to implement Suboxone treatment in the ER.

    Throughout the pandemic, Dr. Langille-Rowe stepped up to help care for COVID patients, establishing herself as a central support for not one but two health crises in BC. After MMH was identified as a COVID treatment centre, Dr. Langille-Rowe volunteered to work clinically at the centre and take on some unpaid managerial duties.

    In 2021, Dr. Langille-Rowe became a local Medical Staff Association president. She also teaches with the UBC Medical Student Integrated Community Clerkships (ICC) program.

    Despite the array of accomplishments Dr. Langille Rowe has achieved during her first five years, her proudest moments are always patient interactions—specifically when patients tell her they feel well cared for and supported.

    In her free time, Dr. Langille-Rowe loves to garden, mountain bike and cook.

  • R2 Resident Award: Dr. Kimberley Chang

    Dr. Kimberley Chang is an R2 Resident training at the UBC Family Practice Nanaimo site. Throughout her time in the program, Dr. Chang has been an exemplary resident in family medicine, and has developed several key traits of family medicine, including professionalism, advocacy, collaboration, management, and scholarly interest. “She is a role model not only for residents, but for all family physicians, advocating for improved patient care and access to care, regardless of where home is,” says one of her colleagues who nominated her for the R2 Resident Award.

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    Of particular note has been Dr. Chang’s ongoing commitment to research throughout her Residency. During her rural rotation Dr. Chang developed a research project to determine whether patients have a true penicillin allergy. She wanted this trial to be performed in the community the patients lived in, hoping to eliminate the travel to a tertiary care center. Despite facing considerable obstacles in obtaining ethics approval, she was successful in receiving approval and advocating for the trial to be performed in the community where her patients live. This was largely due to her drive to improve access to health care, and active collaboration with local family physicians in Vanderhoof to garner community support.

    The fieldwork for Dr. Chang’s research project is scheduled to begin in the spring of 2022. The implications of the work are far reaching, with the potential to solve issues related to over diagnosis, and to improve patient care, and reduce care costs.

  • R2 Resident Award: Dr. Romina Moradi

    Dr. Romina Moradi is an R2 Resident training at the UBC Family Practice Coastal site. During her 2-year Family Practice Residency, Dr. Moradi has been actively involved with the program, serving as the International Medical Graduate (IMG) Lead Resident, a role that represents over 100 IMG residents. She currently sits on the Resident Selection Committee, the Postgraduate Education Committee and at the local level, the Coastal Site Resident Training Committee.

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    To her peers, Dr. Moradi is a fierce advocate for family medicine and the experience of family medicine Residents.

    “She bodies advocacy and leadership and has personally changed my family medicine residency experience for the better,” says one of her colleagues who nominated her for the R2 Resident Award. “Romina was the resident who I could always turn to and who helped motivate me through some of my hardest days. She didn’t do this for just me though – she was the resident that was always available to help anyone.

    In addition to her involvement with the Residency program, Dr. Moradi is also a standing committee member of the BC IMG orientation, a complex introductory program for incoming residents who trained abroad. She has demonstrated advocacy and leadership around the educational challenges posed by the return of service contract—a contract that IMGs are required to negotiate with the province as a key part of their matching process.

    Through advocacy efforts, she has worked tirelessly with program administrators and Ministry of Health representatives to help mitigate the impact that the return of service contract has on the education experience of residents—many of whom face emotional and logistical challenges throughout the process while also navigating the regular stresses of residency.

  • R2 Resident Award: Dr. Ramita Verma

    Dr. Ramita Verma is an R2 Resident training at the UBC Family Practice Victoria site. According to her peers, Dr. Verma is a “passionate, thoughtful, and tireless advocate of the power and value of family medicine, and has demonstrated true leadership in supporting residents through their placements and preparing them for success.”

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    Dr. Verma serves as co-chair of the Resident Engagement Working Committee for the Victoria and South Islands Divisions of Family Practice. During her time in time in this role, she has developed educational resources for residents, secured funding for educational retreats, organized wellness workshops and developed a mentorship program linking local residents to doctors who work in advocacy and/or with vulnerable populations.

    Aware of the additional skill development needed to run a business, Dr. Verma not only secured funding but also organized a retreat where residents learned about billing and effective documentation and were also exposed to local employment opportunities after graduation.

    From medical school through to residency, Dr. Verma has shown a great interest in working with youth and women. She has taken several electives relative to these specialities including women’s clinics and foundry clinics.

  • Dr. Manoo and Jean Gurjar Award: Dr. Hannah Gibson

    Dr. Hannah Gibson is an R1 Resident of the UBC Family Practice Residency Program working at the Kelowna site. According to her peers, she is a passionate advocate for social care, with a focus on trans care, substance use, mental and sexual health, particularly among people experiencing homelessness.

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    “Hannah demonstrates all of the characteristics of a great leader: integrity, motivation, flexibility but most importantly, looking out and caring for those around her,” says one of her colleagues who nominated her for the 2022 Dr. Manoo and Jean Gurjar Award.

    Dr. Gibson is originally from the UK and completed her medical training in Leeds. She fell in love with BC after visiting for a ski season and made it her permanent home shortly after.

    Since moving to Kelowna, Dr. Gibson has thrown herself into her community, including work with the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) and the Interior Crisis Line—a continuation of work she started at her University Crisis Line in the UK.

    She started as an outreach worker and provided basic care and support for people experiencing homelessness while working for the CMHA. After noticing a gap in healthcare provision, she championed a research project on healthcare in supportive housing that is slated for publishing later this year.

    Dr. Gibson plans on practising hospitalist and community medicine in Kelowna upon graduating in 2023.

  • Dr. Manoo and Jean Gurjar Award: Dr. Emma Jackson

    Dr. Emma Jackson is an R2 Resident of the UBC Family Practice Residency Program working at the Victoria site. She intends to practice full-scope community-based family medicine with a focus on maternity care, women’s health, mental health, and lifestyle medicine. According to her peers, Dr. Jackson is a strong advocate for wellness and well-being, particularly in isolated or marginalized populations and fellow physicians.

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    “Dr. Jackson’s dedication to those who are suffering is very apparent in her leadership focus and is exemplified in her advocacy for residents who experience isolation and are in need of support,” said one of her colleagues who nominated her for the 2022 Dr. Manoo and Jean Gurjar Award.”

    As a UBC medical undergrad, Dr. Jackson served as “Aboriginal Health Liaison” for the UBC Class Council from September 2015 to May 2016 and has volunteered with the UBC Aboriginal Health Initiative.  She has also coordinated and lead walking groups and well being groups for adults with mental health and addition challenges.

    As a Resident, she was Co-Chair of the UBC Family Medicine Residency’s Resident Resilience Committee (RRC). She is now mentoring incoming co-chairs for the RRC and serves as a resident representative for the Victoria Resident Wellness and Advocacy Committee.

    Dr. Jackson also co-authored a letter that appeared in the Canadian Family Physician addressing systemic factors that contribute to learner and physician suicide and highlighting the need for a healthy medical culture.

  • Medical Student Scholarship: Dr. Lisa Nakajima

    Dr. Lisa Nakajima is an R1 Resident of the UBC St. Paul's Family Practice Program. She intends to practice full-scope family medicine in the community, with a particular interest in women's health, addictions, and palliative care.  

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    Lisa grew up in Whistler, BC, and completed her medical training at UBC.  During medical school, she was involved in global health initiatives in Nepal.  She has been working closely with indigenous Tharu communities in rural Nepal to pilot a sexual and reproductive health education program among adolescents.  She has also been involved in initiatives locally, providing age-appropriate presentations on sexual health to youth in the Lower Mainland. She also spent 3 months in rural communities across BC during her medical training which sparked a passion for rural medicine, and hopes to provide care to rural and remote communities once completing residency. She has a strong commitment to health promotion and advocacy, and hopes to provide culturally safe, equitable healthcare to communities across BC. 

  • Medical Student Scholarship: Dr. Yanru (Jessie) Zhang

    Jessie is a graduate from the UBC Vancouver Fraser Medical Program who was matched to UBC Family Medicine at the St. Paul's site in Vancouver. As a medical student, Jessie dedicated a lot of effort to increase her classmates’ exposure to Family Medicine and to improve Family Medicine related undergrad education experiences.

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    She was actively involved with the UBC Family Medicine Interest Group and planned multiple academic and informative CaRMS events. She represented students’ voice when working with the Langley Division of Family Practice to examine the current UBC Family Medicine preceptorship program, which led to several actionable items to improve both learner and preceptor’s experiences.

    She was also actively involved with the student community. To ensure medical students continue to have the opportunity to take on an educator role during the COVID-19 pandemic, she and her fellow classmates created an online version of the existing UBC antibiotic stewardship education program, which was delivered virtually to 24 elementary classes last year. To alleviate the healthcare system’s pressure with the COVID-19 pandemic, she was part of the Medical Student Response Team and mobilized medical students to support physicians and public health authorities during the pandemic.