SUMMERSIDE – Kristian Macdonald pays close attention to ears, noses, throats and his French-speaking patients.
The otorhinolaryngologist who began working in Summerside in the summer is one of three ear-nose-and-throat specialists in P.E.I., but the only one who speaks French.
In October he was named Étoile Santé.
“I always wanted to be a doctor. But for various reasons I started my career as a pharmacist. I studied science for two years at UPEI before completing my studies in pharmacy at Memorial University. After working as a pharmacist in P.E.I., I decided to enroll at Dalhousie Medical School.”
Macdonald grew up in Charlottetown. His mother, Claudette, is Acadian and taught French Immersion.
“What I like about otorhinolaryngology is that it involves both medical and surgical components. I begin a consultation process with my patients and, when necessary, follow them into surgery.
“I also get to see patients of all ages. I love my work.”
According to Macdonald, around five to 10 per cent of his patients speak French.
“Sometimes I find out by overhearing them talk to each other… other times I hear the hint of a French accent. They are generally surprised, happy and relieved to learn that they can speak their first language and be understood. This is especially true with kids.”
A patient’s mother nominated Macdonald for the P.E.I. French Health Network’s Étoile Santé campaign.
“When he heard me speaking French to my son, Dr. Macdonald immediately switched to French,” said the application.
“What a wonderful surprise that was. He was also very attentive, we are lucky to have such a great doctor.”
Macdonald’s contact information can be found in the bilingual service provider directory at www.santepei.ca/repertoire.