March 27, 2017 • Written in Community Support Practicing Physicians 0 Comments

• Written by Jonathan Koch

Like many other professionals, rural physicians are powerful assets in their local communities.  Not only do their health care skills and practices enhance the quality of rural life, but rural physicians also contribute to rural life on a more personal level.  They have special relationships with their patients and staff because they live and work alongside them as family, friends, neighbours, and community volunteers.

Every spring, the Alberta Rural Physician Action Plan (RPAP) celebrates the contributions of health workers to quality of life in rural Alberta. Alberta Rural Health Week, taking place this year from 27-31 March 2017, is an opportunity to focus attention and raise awareness about both the challenges and success stories related to rural health. We encourage communities to show appreciation for the contributions of rural physicians and physicians who teach and mentor future doctors, called preceptors, through simple means, including:

March 30 – Celebrate National Doctor’s Day

In Canada, many communities recognize March 30 of each year as National Doctors' Day: an international event held annually to show appreciation to physicians for their work in society. Appreciation for physicians can be shown with a card, an ad or thank-you letter in the local newspaper, a simple gift, or an event. A number of communities around Alberta organize physician appreciation activities to say thank you to their healthcare heroes.

Celebrate your healthcare heroes: Nominate a rural physician or community for a 2017 RPAP Award

The Annual RPAP Awards program provides your local physician and rural community with a healthy dose of recognition. Each year, RPAP selects recipients for the Alberta Rural Physician Award of Distinction and the Alberta Rural Community Physician Attraction and Retention Award.

Visit to learn more about the RPAP Awards program and past recipients, and how you can submit your nomination prior to 1 June 2017.

The Alberta Rural Physician Action Plan (RPAP) is an independent, not-for-profit company funded by the Alberta Ministry of Health. Established in 1991 by the Government of Alberta, RPAP supports the ongoing efforts of Alberta’s rural physicians, their families and communities to improve the quality of rural health care.

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