Tignish a 'great place to work,' says new doctor

Dr. Peter Entwistle and his wife Sheri-Anne Entwhistle are both working at the health centre in Tignish.
Dr. Peter Entwistle and his wife Sheri-Anne Entwhistle are both working at the health centre in Tignish.

(Submitted by Dr. Peter Entwistle - image credit)

Dr. Peter Entwistle has moved thousands of kilometres across two continents looking for the right place to practice medicine, and he believes he has found it in Tignish, P.E.I.

Entwistle began seeing patients at the Tignish Co-op Health Centre at the western tip of the Island earlier this month.

"P.E.I. is a place that seems open to changes," said Entwistle.

"Where I'm working at the moment, Tignish, is a really great place to work."

Entwistle became a doctor in the U.K., but immigrated to Canada in part because of his frustrations with the health care system there. He settled in British Columbia.

But his frustrations continued, so much so that he actually ran for the legislature as an independent to draw attention to some of the problems he saw.

He and his wife, licensed practical nurse Sheri-Anne Entwhistle, continued to look for opportunities, and were attracted by what they saw on P.E.I. during a holiday.

"We've been kind of following what's been going on in terms of the changes with Health PEI, and some of the things that they're looking to do here in West Prince," Entwistle said.

"It's just really quite exciting and fits in with what Sheri-Anne and I are looking and hoping to do."

'Not reliant on a single physician'

Entwistle likes the collaborative nature of the practice at the Tignish Co-op Health Centre, a system that is centred around patients, rather than around doctors.

That's not only only a better approach to medicine, he said, but also more sustainable for health care in the town.

"It's not reliant on a single physician, and if one person goes then everything comes into crisis," he said.

"The physicians I replaced in Tignish had great reputations and worked super hard, but I don't know that that model is particularly sustainable in the future."

Entwistle said he is in the later stages of his career, and his goal is when he retires the health centre will be able to continue in Tignish without any major disruption.

All health care systems have problems, said Entwistle, but he said he is optimistic that Health PEI is prepared to make changes on the Island that will make it better.

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