Dr. Shawn Legall arrived in Canada to begin his fellowship in
This, however, was not the first chapter in the story of Dr. Legall’s relationship with the Department and School. It actually began five years ago when Dr. Leigh Sowerby, Resident Alumnus ('11) and a team of physicians began regular medical missions to Guyana – Dr. Legall’s homeland.
Dr. Sowerby met Dr. Legall on the second of such visits. The two physicians developed a
“Once he returned to Canada, Dr. Sowerby made arrangements for me to join the resident teaching sessions by
Dr. Legall was born and raised in Guyana, and always had a strong interest in science. After serving as a cadet in the army and receiving an associate degree in pharmacy, he applied to medical school. It was during his internship that a new postgraduate general surgery program was introduced and Dr. Legall was keen to pursue surgical training. He completed the program and ended up working in neurosurgery for four years.
When an opportunity arose to join the Otolaryngology team at the Georgetown Hospital, where he was working, he jumped onboard and has been focused on the specialty ever since.
“It’s a small department at the Hospital,” said Dr. Legall. “But it serves as the main referral
Dr. Legall’s own supervisor had been working on the design of a new postgraduate program in
Dr. Legall is exceedingly grateful for the experience with
Being a member of the Department has also given Dr. Legall the opportunity to have discussions with his colleagues in London about knowledge transfer, and how to improvise and provide sophisticated care in a lower resource environment. He believes that the insight he has gained on the efficiencies of a larger department, and how to improve care to patients overall will prove to be invaluable.
“I have seen how surgeons and attendings practice, how they prepare their patients, and how they can do surgery in a proper and timely fashion,” he said.
It’s all a made a difference. And while Drs. Legall and Sowerby
When Dr. Legall returns to Georgetown Hospital, he will take on the role of Program Coordinator for the postgraduate program. He will be charged with getting the training program off the ground. At the same time, his own training and his relationship with the Department in London will continue.
Dr. Sowerby says that the plan is to work with the team in Guyana to support the postgraduate training program that will lead to trainees working independently. He believes that members of the Department, including himself, will continue to go to Guyana and support the training of young physicians there.
“I feel very privileged to do what I do, and where I do it, and as a global citizen, I feel a responsibility to do whatever I can to help others,” he said.