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St. Joseph's Health Centre Toronto

Paying it forward: mentor role inspires Dr. David Anderson, chief resident

David AndersonEach year, St. Joseph’s Health Centre welcomes new chief residents (CRs) to guide the experience we offer to incoming medical students. The CR role honours the skills and abilities of stand-out residents and places them in a position to help formally train and mentor the next generation of students.

For 2019-20, St. Joseph’s welcomed four new CRs in July: Dr. David Anderson and Dr. Ellen Ann Thompson for Family Medicine; Dr. Marisa Leon-Carlyle for Psychiatry; and Dr. Stephanie Tung for Surgery.

We are sharing their stories over the month as they move into this important role. Dr. Anderson tells us what inspired a career in medicine, what he’s looking forward to in the coming year, and what he values about working at St. Joseph’s.

Why did you choose to pursue a career in medicine and what keeps you inspired?
Medicine provides a fantastic mix of art and science, and an opportunity to both serve people and provide advocacy for communities. I enjoy the constant challenge of learning and adapting to changing knowledge and technology. I also continue to be humbled by the resilience and compassion that people have in the face of adversity. It’s a privilege and fulfilling to be able to be a part of the lives of patients and their care.

How will this role allow you to mentor and train this cohort of residents?
I have been fortunate to have had many great mentors over my education and different careers – and I’m interested in being able to pay that forward. Being chief resident allows both a formal and informal opportunity to support residents in managing what can be a very demanding role, liaise and advocate with the program on their behalf, and help to foster an environment where we care for each other so that we can better care for our patients.

What drew you to St. Joseph’s for your residency?
My previous career was in social work, and I was drawn to the values of social justice and providing care to those who most need it. I think St. Joseph’s and Unity Health provide an excellent environment and learning experience to prepare us to provide care for a diverse population.

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