By Yasmine Elmir
“My greatest pleasure in the practice of family medicine is the opportunity to be a doctor of the person and not just of the disease,” says Dr. Alice Nanhou, Interim Medical Director of the University Family Medicine Group (GMF-U) Jardins-Roussillon. “This practice therefore comes to meet my natural ability to sympathize with suffering. The fact that the family physician has to follow the whole family gives a particular perspective of completeness in patient care.” Originally from Cameroon, Dr. Nanhou received her MD degree in 1999 from Heidelberg University in Germany and completed her residency in Family Medicine in 2006 at Université Laval. She has been a practicing physician at CSSS Jardins-Roussillon since 2007.
Dr. Nanhou was approached by Dr. Dominique Archambault, the former Director of the GMF-U Jardins-Roussillon, for a supervisory position when the GMF-U was first created in 2009. “I accepted this role and it is with pleasure that I have seen the number of residents increase from three trainees per year to 16 today. In addition, we welcome student nurse practitioners,” shares Dr. Nanhou. “I experienced all this growth while my main practice was at the CLSC Chateauguay.” To take the next step, Dr. Nanhou decided to move her practice from the CLSC Chateauguay to the GMF-U Jardins-Roussillon, where she would develop the Home Support Practice (HSP), which was still in its infancy.
In January 2020, Dr. Nanhou became Interim Medical Director of the GMF-U Jardins-Roussillon. "I took on the responsibilities of Director at a time when the team lost four doctors for a variety of reasons combined with the COVID-19 crisis," she says. Dr. Nanhou had to find solutions to deal with the absence of the four doctors, implement solutions to take care of patients and continue the training of residents in the unusual conditions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. As Interim Director, Dr. Nanhou is responsible for ensuring that the quality of patient care and services within the GMF-U is up to standard. “After the COVID-19 crisis, I intend to work with the whole team on the GMF-U's vision for the short- and medium-term in order to define priorities. At the GMF-U Jardins-Roussillon, we have a dynamic team and a stimulating environment,” says Dr. Nanhou. “I appreciate the quality of the teaching that is provided and the teachers' passion for teaching; the desire and efforts that the entire teaching team puts into helping residents reach their full potential.”
Dr. Nanhou has many aspirations for the future. “My dream would be to cut back on my other commitments to work in clinical research. Studying the impact of drugs on patients' quality of life is a passion,” she notes. “This research is essential to better understand and treat diseases and to identify potential risk factors.”