This week, we're bringing you stories from three up-and-coming MDs. It's not the first time we've focused on young doctors -- but these stories may surprise you. All of our guests live with a disability
-- and it's not often their stories get told. That's because there's been a culture of keeping quiet and staying in the shadows when you face any kind of adversity in medicine. Doctors, after all, are the healers -- and there's a feeling that they're supposed to be invincible. But if you needed proof that attitude is changing -- these three are it.
is a second-year med student at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine
. But before med school, Daniel had a career in the Canadian Armed Forces. He did four tours of duty in Bosnia, Croatia and Afghanistan. In 2005, the former parachute instructor had a free-fall accident while conducting a
course and was paralyzed. Three years later, he competed at the Beijing Paralympics in arms-only rowing. It was there he met a fellow athlete who inspired him to pursue a career in medicine.
is just a few months shy of earning his medical degree at the University of British Columbia. He has a learning
disability that makes it very difficult from him to read. Earlier this year, he wrote a heartfelt account in the Canadian Medical Association Journal
about getting through med school -- and why he's so committed to doing it. He tells us why he thinks his disability will help to make him a caring MD.
Dr. Vera Krejcik
is the new president of the Canadian Association of Physicians with Disabilities
. (CAPD) Unlike Daniel Heffner and Steve Daniel, Krejcik entered med school intact and planned on a residency in internal medicine. That changed in her final year. She was diagnosed with an abnormal blood vessel in her brain which could rupture and even kill her. She had risky surgery to correct it but in the days that followed, she had a debilitating stroke that left her partially paralyzed. She tells Brian what her time on the other side of the glass -- in the intensive care unit -- taught her about being a doctor.
And we also pay tribute to a doctor who broke ground for these up-and-comers.
Dr. Ashok Muzumdar
was a rehabilitation specialist in Charlottetown, PEI. He founded the Canadian Association for Physicians with Disabilities to help deal with his own loss of vision. It was the first such association in the world. We'd planned to speak with Dr. Muzumdar on our program, but sadly, he passed away late last month
after a remarkable career.