From being born in Sudan and growing up in the United Arab Emirates, to establishing her own practice in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, Dr. Dalia Eldol has been on a journey to make a difference in her community.
Dr. Eldol graduated from the Ahfad University for Women, School of Medicine in the capital of Sudan, and completed her post-graduate medical training and experiences in Sudan and the United Kingdom before becoming licensed to practice medicine as a general practitioner (or family doctor).
Prior to coming to Nova Scotia, Dr. Eldol completed a Master of Science in Health Promotion at the University of Alberta. Dr. Eldol has over ten years of experience in primary health care, emergency medicine, tropical medicine, infectious diseases, and public health.
In July 2022, Dr. Eldol began practice at the Bridgewater and Area Family Health Centre in the Western Zone of the province after completing the Nova Scotia Practice Ready Assessment Program (NSPRAP) and moving with her family from Alberta to Nova Scotia.
Designed to introduce family doctors to underserviced communities, NSPRAP recruits international medical graduates (IMGs) who wish to practice family medicine in Nova Scotia. The purpose of the program is to ensure that international medical graduates who wish to practice family medicine in Nova Scotia possess the appropriate clinical skills and knowledge to provide quality patient care. Candidates of the program must complete orientation training and a 12-week clinical field assessment with assessors who are experienced family physicians in Nova Scotia. Dr. Eldol completed her field assessments in Antigonish, Westville and New Glasgow.
“During the assessments, I received great support and mentorship from the assessors that enabled me to succeed in my own practice after completing the program. It was an amazing experience,” explained Dr. Eldol.
Although there are many programs across the country offering practice-ready assessments for IMGs, Dr. Eldol said the program in Nova Scotia offers a clear pathway to practice and an ideal introduction to the Canadian health care system and the culture of practice in Nova Scotia.
“I am passionate about family medicine with an emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention. I am committed to helping families reach their health goals and promote their well-being,” explained Eldol. “I have a special interest in managing chronic diseases and caring for the elderly population and equity-seeking groups.”
As a member of an ethnic minority, Dr. Eldol said she is dedicated to addressing the social determinants of health to reduce health disparities within the health care system. She is particularly passionate about providing care to marginalized groups in her community, including immigrants, refugees, and other vulnerable groups.
“I am bringing my expertise in cross-cultural barriers to make a difference for underserviced communities of Bridgewater and the surrounding area,” said Dr. Eldol.
Dr. Eldol said that in addition to the lifestyle, friendly communities, and stunning beaches that attracted her to Nova Scotia, she enjoys the broad scope of clinical practice, lifelong learning opportunities, and a collegial environment offered in the province.
Dr. Eldol acknowledged that practicing medicine in rural Nova Scotia comes with challenges but describes it as a privilege.
“The shortage of providers and resources causes physicians to bare heavy duties and responsibilities to meet the broad needs of the community. On the other hand, physicians can practice in broad clinical areas. You are also able to establish meaningful connections with patients and having their trust and gratitude is rewarding.”
Dr. Eldol said her family has been warmly welcomed by the community of Bridgewater.
“We love it here. We are touched by people’s kindness and hospitality,” said Dr. Eldol.
In their spare time, Dr. Eldol enjoys spending time with her husband and three children doing a wide range of activities, including hiking, going to local skateparks, and attending arts and culture events.
Dr. Eldol encourages IMGs to consider coming to Nova Scotia because it is a great place to practice medicine, raise a family, and there is so much to do on the South Shore.
“There’s a great work-life balance here, it is a wonderful place to work and raise a family,” she said.
The Practice Ready Assessment Program is one way Nova Scotia is creating pathways to practice for family doctors to enhance services to communities across the province. This program relies on the support of family physicians to act as Clinical Field Assessors, and we are always in need of more. For more information on this rewarding opportunity to make a generational impact in communities across Nova Scotia, please visit: https://www.nsprap.com/become-an-assessor