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Dr. Bruce Martin received the national May Cohen award at the Canadian Conference on Medical Education (CCME) held in Winnipeg April 29 - May 2, 2017. The Family Physician of the Year Award was presented at the Annual Scientific Assembly (ASA) on April 27, 2017.

Dr. Bruce Martin receives Family Physician of the Year and May Cohen Equity, Diversity and Gender awards

June 16, 2017 — 

Whether you’re a patient, a student, or a colleague, you want the best from the people around you.

This year, you need look no further than Dr. Bruce Martin, recipient of the 2017 Family Physician of the Year Award and the May Cohen Equity, Diversity, and Gender Award.

He’s a physician, but to simply call him a doctor wouldn’t come close to summing up the many roles he plays. For the University of Manitoba, he is both the director of admissions for the Max Rady College of Medicine at the and Director of the postgraduate program for the Department of Family Medicine. For the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA), he’s also a clinician with a focus on palliative care. To his colleagues he’s Bruce, not Dr. Martin. And if you’re new at the university, he’s probably the first person who will come by to welcome you. That’s because to Bruce, people matter. It’s one of the key aspects that make him such an appropriate candidate for both awards.

He welcomes the praise and the honours, but wants to be sure to share credit where credit is due.  “In terms of both awards, there are many, many deserving people throughout this province who contribute profoundly to primary care and specifically family medicine,” said Martin, adding that he could name countless physicians he would describe as equally worthy, if not more so. “It is certainly recognition for the roles I’ve had, but truly, the recognition does go to my mentors and also to my family who supported me.”

In his current role as Director of Admissions, Martin has been described as a strong advocate for addressing the historical under-representation of individuals from diverse socio-economic and cultural backgrounds, as well as learners with disabilities. He has collaborated extensively in promoting a safe, supportive and professional learning environment, and has been frequently recognized by students for his contributions to teaching and mentorship. His clinical career has been extensively focused on northern and Indigenous communities with a commitment to enhancing access to culturally safe and culturally proficient care. Today, he works primarily in palliative care with patients of all ages.

Martin says that over a 40-year career, it’s hard to summarize what has been most rewarding. That said, he does point to the breadth and depth of his experiences as a clinician as being deeply satisfying. “At this stage, there is very little that I haven’t had the opportunity to do,” he says. But he also points to a sense of belonging as being a meaningful part of his career, being part of a community. “Whether that’s a community of practice, a community of patients, a geographic community, a community of common interests. It’s about being a part of something.”

To young physicians just starting out, Martin has a few pointers about what makes a family physician good at the job. First, seek out mentors and learn from their experiences. Next, develop an understanding of relationships—whether it be with colleagues, friends, patients or communities. Then make sure to stay on top of the science, no matter where you are in your career. “It’s very, very easy to silo oneself in his or her own practice, but it’s important to stay current.” And finally? “After all that, it’s just about good, diligent hard work.”

The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC) presents the May Cohen Equity, Diversity, and Gender Award to recognize outstanding effort or achievement of an individual(s), program(s), department(s) or faculty in improving the gender equity environment in academic medicine in Canada.


The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC) presents the May Cohen Equity, Diversity, and Gender Award to recognize outstanding effort or achievement of an individual(s), program(s), department(s) or faculty in improving the gender equity environment in academic medicine in Canada.

The Manitoba College of Family Physicians awards the Family Physician of the Year to recognize an outstanding Manitoba family physician who embodies the four principles of family medicine:

  • He or she is a skilled clinician
  • His or her practice is community-based
  • He or she acts as a resource to a population
  • In his or her role, the relationship with the patient is central

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9 comments on “Dr. Bruce Martin receives Family Physician of the Year and May Cohen Equity, Diversity and Gender awards

  1. Bill McKelvey

    Bruce was our family physician and our personal friend in Kirkland Lake, Ontario in the 1980’s. He helped us through many crisis! He was instrumental in keeping my mother alive after her heart attack! (Bruce, she lived to 104 and was bedridden for only one week.) Congratulations Bruce! You are so deserving!

    Reply
  2. Liz Robazza

    Kirkland Lake, Ontario was blessed to have Dr Bruce Martin here as a Family Physician in the early 80’s. As a Public Health Nurse, I was fortunate to share many cases with him. He always wanted the best for his patients and went out of his way to help anyone who crossed his path! As time went on I was even luckier to call him my friend! Well deserved Bruce! Congrats!

    Reply
  3. Farah Chowdhury

    My classmates and I were very fortunate to have Dr. Martin as a constant mentor who has always had an open door no matter how busy. He inspired me to persevere through the academic rigors of medical school. Thank you for exemplifying excellence everyday with such humility and grace.

    Reply
  4. Elaine Cope

    Congratulations Bruce! I think of you often, it seems like yesterday you made us pizza in Armstrong, Ontario! Glad life has been good to you, as you have been to all your friends and patients.

    Reply

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