More Doctors Trained in Environmental Medicine
UPdate Spring 2004

Dr. Elizabeth King of Annapolis Royal and Dr. Ben Boucher of Port Hawkesbury were joint recipients of the 2004 Dr. E. Bruce Elliott Memorial Scholarship.  The scholarship provides specialized training in environmental medicine through the American Association of Environmental Medicine. 

Dr. Boucher reports, "The course was terrific and very beneficial to my requirements in metal detoxification.”  Boucher has been providing care to a number of workers who became ill during the New Waterford Hospital renovations. The scholarship allowed him to attend an advanced course in metal toxicity, and make contact with experts in that field with whom he can consult in future.

Dr. King called the course “an overwhelmingly positive experience.” She feels “I now have the information and resources to organize a component of my practice to deal with environmental allergies and sensitivities.”

The scholarship program is unique to Nova Scotia. It was organized by the Nova Scotia Allergy and Environmental Health Association in 2000 after the death of Dr. Bruce Elliott, a Halifax GP with a large practice in environmental medicine. Dr. Elliott’s death turned a serious shortage of environmental physicians into a crisis.
Nova Scotian physicians and patients both benefit from the program, which enables doctors to receive training in a specialized area not presently included in Canadian medical school curriculums. The courses are accredited by Canadian and American medical associations.  In addition to assisting individual patients, several of the doctors have served as consultants when air quality problems in schools caused health problems for students and teachers.  

“One of our goals from the beginning was to make it possible for patients throughout the province to have access to doctors with this specialized training,” notes Karen Robinson who heads up the NSAEHA’s scholarship committee.  “The sooner environmental health problems are diagnosed and treated, the more likely a person is to regain their health.” The scholarship program has provided training opportunities to 5 physicians and one naturopathic doctor.  The recipients work in Annapolis Royal, Bridgewater, Enfield, and Port Hawkesbury, as well as the Halifax Metro area.

The scholarships have been made possible through generous in kind donations from Air Canada, the American Association of Environmental Medicine, and Vision 2000 Travel Group as well as individual donations.

Donations to the scholarship fund can be sent to NSAEHA, Box 31323, Halifax, N.S., B3K 5Y5.  Tax receipts will be issued for donations of $10.00 or more.  Cheques should be made out to the NSAEHA/Elliott Scholarship. Donations can also be made through the United Way by specifying the NSAEHA Elliott Scholarship under “donor options.”