Community Spotlight: Dr. Firas Al- Dhaher, Petrolia Medical Clinic

While the COVID-19 pandemic has been overwhelming to many clinics, hospitals, and the health care system at large, it has in some cases brought out the best in individuals and communities. I want to take this opportunity in our inaugural column focusing on adjunct faculty and the communities that they serve in, to share how in Petrolia, Ontario, the town and the clinic worked together to focus on the vaccination efforts.

The Central Lambton Family Health Team (CLFHT), along with Lambton Public Health and the town of Petrolia immediately mobilized to get vaccines when they became available to the vulnerable. Schulich faculty and physician Dr. Enoch Daniel, along with administrator Shelley Freer and Executive Director Sarah Milner, spent many hours and days, away from their families, to have the clinic organize mass vaccination campaigns. Every member of the clinic played a role in submitting a list of patients who met the criteria, and nurses, medical students, residents, and physicians, all gowned up and provided vaccines to Lambton county patients.

The results were overwhelmingly successful, and despite all the pressures and challenges, a true team effort gave rise to one of the best vaccination campaigns in the county. Social media and traditional media hailed the efforts of the nurses, receptionists, and clinicians in an incredibly organized effort that provided the community with over 1000 vaccines with minimal clinic disruption.

I am proud to have served alongside the members of my team and being part of a memorable experience, and I am certain that other clinics in other towns and regions were as involved. To them, I thank you for your service and all that you have provided and sacrificed to keep our communities safe.

Dr. Firas Al-Dhaher

Petrolia Medical Clinic