From the lobster boat to family medicine, Dr. Bradley MacDougall’s journey to practicing medicine was inspired by his own family physician growing up, Dr. Michelle Murphy.
“Her kindness and competence inspired me to aspire to become a family physician,” said Dr. MacDougall.
Growing up in Antigonish, Nova Scotia in a fishing family, Dr. MacDougall fished lobster and snow crab with his father and siblings for summer employment. He spent 12 Summers on the water between grade nine and second-year medical school. His mother is a retired teacher and his father still fishes.
Dr. MacDougall completed a Bachelor of Science, Honours in Psychology at Acadia University.
While at Acadia, he volunteered with the SMILE program, a world class program that works with persons with disabilities. He also volunteered in the summer months with the palliative care program in Antigonish.
“My volunteer experience allowed me to provide respite care to palliative care patients and Veterans, giving their family time to run errands. Both were valuable experiences,” explained Dr. MacDougall.
Following his undergraduate degree, Dr. MacDougall attended medical school at Dalhousie University, graduating in 2009. He also completed his family medicine residency at Dalhousie University.
Dr. MacDougall currently practices Family Medicine in Pictou County and says he is currently living his dream lifestyle and medical practice.
“I run a full-service family practice, looking after all ages. I do outpatient clinic, in patient hospitalist, nursing home care, on call and OR assisting. I also am a core preceptor with the North Nova residency program, and regularly take medical students and residents,” said Dr. MacDougall.
Dr. MacDougall points to the ability to shape his medical practice as his life and interests evolve. He says that maintaining the autonomy to do so is the reason he is working in his dream practice. That and the lifestyle offered in Nova Scotia!
“We are a great mix of urban and rural lifestyle. We’re a small province, with world class amenities. Within a few hours you can travel from downtown Halifax, one of the fastest growing cities in Canada, and be whale watching in Digby, or hiking in the Cape Breton Highlands,” explained Dr. MacDougall. “Or you can do the opposite and practice in the community, while travelling into the city to enjoy the food and culture. We have small communities with world class universities, and beautiful natural resources, including access to ocean waters and beaches.”
Dr. MacDougall enjoys the tight knit medical community in Nova Scotia, noting that even if practicing remotely, there’s always back up and support available. In addition to the collegial work environment, the patients are what makes his job exceptional.
“The people and the patient population are what makes practicing in Nova Scotia so special. You will feel valued and appreciated by your patients. “Thank yous are commonplace!” said Dr. MacDougall
When he is not shuttling kids around to after school activities like piano, hockey and basketball, Dr. MacDougall enjoys playing hockey, golf, running, hiking, downhill skiing, and hanging out with family and friends. He also likes to travel and takes advantage of having an international airport nearby.