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REF NO.: 169

SUBJECT: Practising medicine in Canada through the eyes of 103-year-old
DATE: March 31, 2011

Note to editors:

The Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) is celebrating its100th anniversary issue with a profile of the journal's oldest known reader, 103-year-old Memorial College alumnus Dr. Nigel Rusted. (Pre-embargo link only: www.cmaj.ca/embargo/cmaj101858.pdf) Dr. Rusted, an avid CMAJ reader, was known as an innovative surgeon and academic leader in St. John's, N.L, before retiring. This engaging profile provides a glimpse into the life of a practising physician for much of the 20th century, during the pre-antibiotic era when pneumonia, tuberculosis, syphilis and other infectious diseases were often fatal.

"Rusted rarely wonders about medical innovations that would have aided his practice, although he notes antibiotics clearly ‘would have saved a lot of lives' if they'd been available earlier," writes lead author Dr. Jennifer Connor, associate professor of medical humanities, Memorial University. "But he routinely laments some negative changes in the practise of medicine, such as too much reliance on technology and loss of authority (or respect) in the profession."

MEDIA NOTE: Please use the following public links after the embargo lift on Monday, April 4: www.cmaj.ca/cgi/doi/10.1503/cmaj.101858

Contact for interviews: Dr. Jennifer J. Connor, Memorial University of Newfoundland, 709-777-7101, Jennifer.connor@med.mun.ca.

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