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UK Doctor Moves to BC: Commutes to Clinic in Minutes - Whale Watching an Added Bonus

UK Doctor Moves to BC: Commutes to Clinic in Minutes - Whale Watching an Added Bonus

May 02, 2016

Dr. Ibrahim Dodo had never thought of immigrating to Canada until his colleague put the idea into his head one stressful night in 2011. The pair were working the late shift in a busy family practice linked to an emergency room in West Yorkshire, England when Dr. Dodo says he confessed to Dr. Charles Omosigho: “Gosh, Charles, this is really tough”. Dr. Omosigho then revealed that he was moving to Canada. [Estevan, Saskatchewan.]

Dr. Omosigho forwarded an email with a contact in Canada, and by the time Dr. Dodo was heading home that night he’d received a reply from a physician recruitment group in Saskatchewan.
Before long Dr. Dodo had visited Canada. He was impressed, but wary of the cold. He and his wife Zara discussed matters and “we thought we’d look for milder weather”.

“When you think of Canada you have a picture of a frozen place,” he admits. Dr. Omosigho helped again, putting Dr. Dodo in touch with a contact in BC. A whale-watching enthusiast, Dr. Dodo visited BC as a tourist to get an idea what it was like. The impression was again positive. Upon his return to England he contacted Health Match BC and started the process to become qualified to practice in BC.

Connected Colleagues

Dr. Dodo moved to Nanaimo in 2013. He finds his practice at Nanaimo’s Caledonian Clinic “very exciting and satisfying.” He says he enjoys being at a clinic where he can interact with other physicians: “You’re not just an island, practicing on your own, but you have colleagues and you can sit in on their lunch break and talk and exchange ideas.” 

Dr. Dodo says he relishes being more involved in patient care. He praises his patients, saying they are appreciative and just plain nice: “They are very open, they want to discuss, they want to appreciate what you do, they understand and that makes a huge difference to the overall satisfaction of care.” In the future, he hopes to have hospital privileges.

This is not Dr. Dodo’s first move. He was raised in Nigeria, moving every two years as his father worked as a teacher. He earned his medical degree from the University of Maiduguri and worked for three years at a missionary hospital in central Nigeria before heading to the United Kingdom.
Initially Dr. Dodo planned to be an engineer so he could embrace a lifelong interest in physics and math, but he says he was drawn to medicine because it provides a direct and immediate opportunity to help people.
Family Opportunities

In England, Dr. Dodo commuted two hours to get to work. Now it takes him 12 minutes, and just 10 minutes to the ocean. The move is creating opportunities for his son, age 5, and daughter, now 7. The children have made friends, and take soccer and ballet. Zara is home with the children and waiting for a work visa. As for the community, he and his family have experienced “an amazing kind of kindness we’ve never seen before.”

The family has been hiking, going to the beach, spending time on Gabriola Island, and visiting Tofino, Vancouver, and Victoria. He is learning to fish and plans on trying golf soon.

Dr. Dodo says he has no regrets about moving to Nanaimo. “I should have done it sooner, quite frankly.” 

Watch Dr. Dodo's video profile below: