Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

 

 

 

 

Connecting Generations
Learn about our 2017 CMHF Awardees

   

Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

Recognizing and celebrating Canadian heroes whose work has advanced health, here and around the world, and inspires the pursuit of careers in the health sciences.

Honouring Excellence. Preserving History. Connecting Generations.

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Refugees, addicts, the homeless, the poor, members of the LGBT community, people with HIV/AIDS, and victims of torture have all found an advocate in Dr. Berger who worked to promote methadone treatment, needle exchanges, documentation and recognition of the aftereffects of torture, academic infirmaries for the homeless, and clinical treatment of AIDS in Africa.  Many medical practices now considered standard were once controversial initiatives requiring courage to defend and achieve. A graduate of the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Berger joined the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto in 1984, at the onset of the global AIDS crisis.   In 1987 he founded the Toronto HIV Primary Care Physicians Group and established the HIV Project Centre Primary Care Mentor Program, educating doctors and advocating for people with HIV. He led high profile campaigns to persuade government officials of the HIV prevention benefits of methadone and needle exchange programs. In 2004, he led the first Ontario Hospital Association team to Lesotho, where the team joined with Lesotho’s first publicly funded AIDS clinic, expanding his work on behalf of HIV patients worldwide.  Dr. Berger has also advocated for victims of torture, founding the Amnesty International Canadian Medical Network (English), and co-founding the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture to raise public awareness of torture both nationally and internationally.In 2012 Dr. Berger co-founded and co-chaired Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care, coordinating nationwide protests by physicians against cuts to refugee health, which led to a successful Federal Court of Canada Charter challenge restoring health coverage to about 100,000 refugees.  Dr. Berger has been involved in investigations of police treatment of detainees, written about the politics and professional practices of the Ontario Medical Association, and is a tireless champion of social justice and accessible health care in Canada and the world.  He has been a crusader never afraid of the controversial, but above all, he has served the needs of the sick and those who have suffered abuses of power.
2018 Inductee
A respected and honoured researcher in his field, recipient of numerous awards, credited with hundreds of frequently cited publications, Dr. Finlay is also known to a broader public as the co-author of the provocative best-seller, Let Them Eat Dirt: Saving Your Child from An Oversanitized World, which presents to a popular audience scientific evidence concerning possible dangers of excessive sanitation in childhood environments.   The argument advanced by Dr. Finlay, and his co-author Dr. Marie-Claire Arietta, represents one actionable and public application of his profound research into the mechanisms of microbes at the molecular level, which has revealed their positive contributions to human wellness in addition to their role in infectious disease.  With Dr. Finlay, germ theory comes full circle in a balanced recognition of the complex and diverse function of microbes as components of organic life.  The medical research of Dr. Finlay and his colleagues carries us beyond reactive confrontation with microbes as pathogens to a deeper comprehension of their biological mechanisms.  An older era of microbe hunters gives way to new microbe managers who unlock the potential of microbes as instruments of healing.Dr. Finlay continues his ground-breaking work as co-director of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research program “Microbes and Humans,” an interdisciplinary group of physicians, scientists and anthropologists exploring the effect of microbes in human development, evolution and society.  Researcher, author, teacher, lecturer, co-founder of companies devoted to microbiome modification of the immune system, and an advocate of science and science knowledge for the public, Dr. Finlay has made and continues to make significant contributions to the health of Canadians and the world.  He is one of a small number of scientists advancing our fundamental knowledge of life processes while providing understandable guidance and advice to parents and ordinary citizens concerned with the care and well-being of children.
2018 Inductee
Some of our most important advances in understanding cerebrovascular diseases and their treatment are discoveries of Dr. Hachinski and his colleagues, including identification of a link between Alzheimer’s and stroke with David Cechetto and Shawn Whitehead, and the brain’s insula role in sudden death, along with a host of new concepts captured in his new terminology: multi-infarct dementia, leukoaraiosis, vascular cognitive impairment, and brain at risk stage. The eponymic Hachinski Ischemic Score (HIS) is now a standard means for identifying the treatable components of dementia.Dr. Hachinski, Distinguished University Professor of Neurology and past Richard and Beryl Ivey Chair of the Department of Clinical Neurological Sciences, Western University, London, Ontario, has authored, co-authored, or co-edited 17 books and more than 800 frequently-cited scientific publications. He served as Editor-in-Chief for a decade of STROKE, the top journal in the field. He led the adoption of a proclamation on behalf of the World Stroke Organization and all major international brain organizations aimed at uniting stroke and dementia communities in their joint prevention of stroke and potentially preventable dementias.  He introduced a World Stroke Day and a World Brain Day with Mohammad Wasay.Dr. Hachinksi served as first Canadian President of the World Federation of Neurology and Founding Chair of the International Society of Behavioral and Cognitive Disorders and of the World Brain Alliance.  He has been a Visiting Fellow, Florey Neurosciences Institute in Australia and Brain Visiting Scholar at Oxford, Cambridge and London Universities.  The scope of his reputation and work has been worldwide.He has transformed the understanding, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of the two greatest threats to the brain: stroke and dementia. For generations to come, the promise of longer life may also be a promise of better life thanks to his ground-breaking discoveries.  
2018 Inductee
A medical graduate of Queen’s University, Dr. Mount worked as a urologist at McGill University, and as a surgical oncologist at New York’s Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and The Jackson Laboratory, Bar Harbor, Maine.  A 1973 research study of patients with life-limiting illnesses at McGill’s Royal Victoria Hospital (RVH), and his own personal experiences as a cancer patient, intensified Dr. Mount’s interest in the needs of the terminally ill and their families.  He travelled to the United Kingdom to learn firsthand about the hospice movement and eventually persuaded the leadership of the Royal Victoria Hospital and McGill University to open the first comprehensive Palliative Care Service at the Royal Victoria Hospital in 1975. He continued to serve there until 1990, and in 1999, began the McGill Programs in Whole Person Care.Dr. Mount has travelled worldwide promoting and explaining palliative care, the pathophysiology of symptoms and their management, and the human experience of suffering endured by patients and families.  Dr. Mount combined the rigours of scientific analysis with deep appreciation for individual human beings, a combination that helps to humanize the intellectual and procedural triumphs of modern medicine.Professor Emeritus of Medicine at McGill University where he held the Eric M. Flanders Chair in Palliative Medicine, (1995 – 2006), Dr. Mount has received numerous awards, honorary degrees from leading Canadian universities, and is honoured by several awards established in his name.  In 2010, McGill University Health Centre established the Balfour Mount Palliative Care Unit.Dr. Mount is universally admired by his peers and is generally recognized as having achieved integration of palliative care as integral to effective and humane health care.  Many others who may not know Dr. Mount or the great accomplishments of his long career are still touched by the work he has done, and future generations of patients and their families will experience dignity and compassion facing some of their greatest challenges because of his vision.
2018 Inductee
By developing diagnostic tests, screening programs, and treatments for disorders once untreatable and poorly understood, Dr. Rockman-Greenberg has improved the lives of generations of children and their families.  Working closely with the communities themselves, she has carried advanced knowledge and skills from the research facilities of major universities directly to people who need them.  Her life’s work fulfills a great aspiration of humane medical practice: not only the needs of the majority shall be met, but the needs of all, no matter how rare the disorder, no matter how remote a patient may be from the centres of population or power.While completing her degree in medicine, Dr. Rockman-Greenberg developed an early interest in rare and ultrarare genetic disorders, which led to a career in pediatrics and medical genetics.  As an academic clinician, she focused her research on applied molecular genetics and the identification of the molecular basis of genetic disorders overrepresented in unique populations, notably hypophosphatasia (HPP), a metabolic bone disorder, and glutaric aciduria type 1 (GA1), a complex disorder of organic acid metabolism, affecting Mennonite and Indigenous populations respectively.  Most recently she was the Canadian principal investigator for an industry-sponsored clinical trial of a new enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) drug for the treatment of HPP, a treatment that recently received Health Canada approval and has already transformed an untreatable disorder into a treatable one.From 2004 to 2014, Dr. Rockman-Greenberg served as Head of the Department of Pediatrics and Child Health, University of Manitoba, and Medical Director, Child Health Program, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.  In this role, she assured that residency training would include mandatory rotations in rural and remote areas to improve access to health care throughout the province.  As an administrator, researcher, practicing physician, and author of 195 publications, Dr. Rockman-Greenberg has consistently sought, and achieved, practical applications for relevant patient care.  She has received many awards, and was named one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women (2012).  In Dr. Rockman-Greenberg’s case, powerful to do good, which she has done for so many, and often for the most vulnerable.
2018 Inductee
In the mid-1860s, a reorganization in the medical profession made it obligatory for homeopathic physicians and doctors trained in the United States to take further medical courses to obtain their licenses. It was not until 1871 that Dr. Stowe would be admitted to the school becoming one of the first two women to attend lectures at the Toronto School of Medicine. On July 16, 1880, she was finally granted her medical license by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.In 1883, she spearheaded the creation of Woman’s Medical College in Toronto. Fifteen years later, “The Dispensary” was opened, a medical clinic created to provide practical clinical experience to the students of Woman’s Medical College. Services at The Dispensary were provided regardless of a patient's ability to pay and medical advice was free. In 1911, The Dispensary became Women’s College Hospital of Toronto which continues in operation today.Dr. Stowe also helped found the influential Toronto Women's Literary Guild, Canada's first suffragette group set up to fight for women's rights and improvement of working conditions. Pressure exerted by members of this club opened the doors for higher education for women in Toronto.As a proponent of women’s rights, she was determined to help make medical education more readily available for women putting pressure on the University of Toronto to reverse its policy, enabling her daughter, Augusta Stowe-Gullen to become the first female doctor to graduate from a Canadian medical school.Dr. Stowe died in 1903. She is remembered as a teacher, physician, and suffragist, a defender of women’s rights and a champion for women in medicine. Faced with repeated refusals to allow her to study in Ontario for her medical license, Dr. Stowe declared, “the day will come when these doors will swing wide open to every female who chooses to apply.” That day has come, and it is due to the perseverance and leadership of courageous women like Dr. Stowe.
2018 Inductee