“Family medicine has enabled me to bring the world of patients, learners, researchers, and health system decision makers together to build a more promising future in primary care.”
After acquiring a doctorate in medicine from Queen’s University in the 1970s, Dr. Frederick Burge gravitated toward advancing health care and focusing on patients facing chronic end-of-life illnesses.
Dr. Burge practised palliative medicine for a time before returning to regular practice. During his early work as a palliative care doctor he had a brief and intense involvement in dying patients’ lives. His experience with a particular long-standing patient triggered an emotional response in Dr. Burge, redefining his relationships with non-palliative patients.
For over 30 years Dr. Burge has been with Dalhousie University as a physician and as the Director of Research for the Primary Care Research Unit in the Department of Family Medicine. Deeply embedded in the academic research community, this unit has grown from its early days to a self-sufficient, nationally-funded, interdisciplinary research team.
In 2016, as a testament to Dr. Burge’s lifetime devotion and significant contributions as a leader in family medicine, he was awarded the inaugural Dr. Charles & Mrs. Jean Gass Lifetime Achievement Award from the Nova Scotia College of Family Physicians.
Dr. Burge also worked with a team on a study funded by the Canadian Institute of Health Research to support Nova Scotians who lost family members to chronic disease. The products of that study are now moving into the field to help shape the future of care.
Lifetime Achievement in Family Medicine Research Award
These awards honour individuals who are trailblazers and leaders in family medicine research, and who have made a significant career contribution to family medicine research during their active career years. These awards give public recognition to both their work and to the discipline of family medicine.