The Learner

The Learner features information and resources for medical students and residents.

It is distributed by the New Brunswick Medical Society (NBMS) on a quarterly basis.

For more information on NBMS programs available to medical learners, please click here.

Issue #2 | 2024


Graduation Message from the NBMS President, Dr. Paula Keating

Congratulations to our medical school and residency graduates! This is an exciting time as one chapter closes, and a new one begins. So much dedication and commitment has led to this milestone and, on behalf of the NBMS, I want to congratulate you on this accomplishment. We are so proud of you!

We know change and a new challenge brings excitement, but it can also bring high levels of anxiety and stress. To succeed and soar in this new chapter of your medical career, you need to be mentally well and strong. Please reach out to the NBMS Wellness program if you need support. The program is free and confidential, with unlimited counselling support. Take good care of yourself, so you can take care of others.


Dr. Paula Keating

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DMNB Kids Run Club

A group of 30 medical students from Dalhousie Medical New Brunswick (DMNB) volunteered with Kids Run Club – Help Give Children A Healthy Tomorrow this year. Under the guidance of Madeline Power  (DMNB, Class of 2026) and with a passion for giving back to the community, the group worked with 150 elementary school students from Centennial, Hazen White St. Francis, Millidgeville North, and Princess Elizabeth schools. “The kids all seemed to love the program and really enjoyed getting to eat their lunch with the medical students following their running sessions,” said Madeline. Their time together was also helpful in getting the children to reflect on how they felt they were doing and discuss different health topics.

The program ended with a final race at Shamrock Park in Saint John, and it was a huge success. Madeline commented “We were nervous about turnout given the challenges most of these school’s face with parent participation, but we had around 50 kids come out! We had a boys’ 4/5 and girls’ 4/5 800-meter cross-country-style race, followed by running-themed games and lunch in the sunshine. We’re looking forward to holding a final race again next year!”

For more information on Kids Run Club, visit: Kids Run Club – Help Give Children A Healthy Tomorrow

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Embracing New Opportunities for Engagement: Proposed Changes to NBMS Board Practices

To Our Valued Medical Students and Residents,

As part of our continuous effort to improve governance and align with best practices, the New Brunswick Medical Society (NBMS) appointed a Governance Review Committee to undertake a comprehensive review of our board practices. Following this review, the Board of Directors has recommended several changes, including the discontinuation of the practice of appointing observers to the Board. We understand this change may raise questions and concerns, but we believe it represents a positive step towards more effective governance and engagement with all of our membership, including our medical learners.

Key Changes and Their Rationale

Observers on the Board of Directors

Traditionally, medical students and residents have been appointed as observers on the NBMS Board of Directors. The practice of appointing observers to a board is not in keeping with accepted governance standards. The board’s primary purpose is to set strategic direction and provide critical oversight and insight into the management of NBMS. Effective governance requires that discussions be frank, direct, and confidential, with every member at the table being a full contributor who assumes responsibility for outcomes.

The fiduciary responsibility of loyalty necessitates that board discussions remain confidential to protect the integrity of decision-making processes. As such, having non-voting observers in these discussions can complicate the clarity of roles and responsibilities and potentially dilute the accountability framework that is essential for effective governance.

Continuing Engagement in New Ways

The NBMS values your voice and the need for continuous engagement with medical students and residents. While the role of observer will be discontinued, we are committed to finding alternative methods to ensure your perspectives are heard and valued.

Here are some of the new engagement opportunities we are developing:

  1. Medical Learner Subcommittee and Special Working Groups: We envision the Medical Learner Subcommittee having devoted agenda time to attend/present to our NBMS Board of Directors and Standing Committees each year. Where necessary, we may form special working groups on key issues where the input of medical students and residents is crucial. These groups will provide recommendations directly to the Board, via the CEO.
  2. Regular Feedback Mechanisms: We will establish regular, structured feedback sessions where students and residents can share their insights and concerns directly with board members and senior management.
  3. Enhanced Communication Channels: New communication platforms will be introduced to keep you informed about board decisions and organizational developments, allowing for real-time feedback and discussion.
  4. Dedicated Councils and Committees: We will strengthen the roles of existing councils, such as the Family Medicine Specialty Council and the Specialty Council, and ensure that medical students and residents have dedicated voices on these bodies.


Moving Forward Together

Your involvement and input remain vital to the NBMS. These changes are not about reducing your role but about enhancing the effectiveness and clarity of our governance practices. By engaging you through more structured and direct channels, we aim to ensure your voices are heard clearly and your contributions make a significant impact.

We encourage all medical students and residents to stay actively involved through these new opportunities. Together, we can continue to shape the future of healthcare in New Brunswick with a governance model that supports our shared goals and values.

Thank you for your continued commitment to governance improvement and excellence in medical practice.

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Ambassador Program 2024

The NBMS is excited to announce the Ambassador Program will be offered again for 2024! The program provides funding for twelve medical learners to attend the 2024 Physician Summit and Annual General Meeting (AGM) being held in Miramichi October 4th and 5th. The program covers travel, meals, and hotel costs for a limited number of medical students from Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick, the Centre de formation médicale du Nouveau-Brunswick, Memorial University, Université de Montréal, and Université de Laval.

Friday’s agenda begins at 3:00 p.m. with Ambassador programming which includes meeting the NBMS President and presentations on recruitment, NBMS governance, the path of a resident in New Brunswick and Wellness strategies for medical learners. This ambassador-only portion of the agenda is followed by a social evening hosted by the Miramichi District Medical Society.

Saturday’s meeting runs from 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. and includes a governance review, the NBMS’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), which will set the direction for the Society in 2024-2025, and keynote speaker, Dr. Jane Philpott, the author of “Constructing the Future of Health Care”.  Saturday evening is the annual Celebration of Medicine gala dinner and installation of our 2024-2025 president, Dr. Lise Babin.

The NBMS has partnered with the provincial Department of Early Education and Childhood Development on their program called ‘Centre of Excellence – Health’ where high school students interested in medicine can engage with medical learners and physicians. We are pleased to welcome five high school students from the Miramichi area to the Ambassador Program this year.

The application process will open on August 26th, 2024. Instructions on how to apply will be communicated by email and through your medical school coordinators.

We look forward to seeing you at this year’s NBMS Physician Summit.

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New Brunswick Heart Failure Symposium

Empowering Primary Care Professionals to Tackle Heart Failure

The Heart & Stroke Foundation of New Brunswick, in partnership with NB Heart Center and NB Medical Society, invites you to a pivotal symposium on September 20, 2024, in Saint John. This event will bring together primary care professionals to share best practices, explore emerging research, and strategize on enhancing patient outcomes in the face of rising heart failure cases.

More than 100,000 Canadians are diagnosed with heart failure each year and over 750,000 people are living with this complex condition. In New Brunswick, heart failure ranks 3rd as one of the top reasons for hospital admission (after childbirth and COVID). This significant public health concern not only has profound economic impacts, but challenges the delivery of optimal care, particularly in primary care settings.

Keynote speaker Dr. Anique Ducharme, an esteemed expert in heart failure, will address the epidemic’s impact on our healthcare system and discuss national strategies to combat it. Don’t miss this opportunity to advance your knowledge and connect with peers dedicated to improving heart health in New Brunswick.

Click here to register.

We hope to see you at our day-long event in Saint John on September 20, 2024.

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Financial Success in Med School and Beyond

With tailored advice for medical students, advanced planning, and strategic financing, you can get through your medical training with less stress about finances. You’ll also be better equipped to handle the expenses that come with the transition to a professional career. Here is some advice to consider.

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For more information, please contact Jennifer Scott Harris, Member Engagement Specialist, at or (506) 871-8904.