Dr. Michael Ovueni has arrived in Estevan, bringing the total number of physicians in the city to nine.
Ovueni started his practice at the Estevan Medical Clinic January 21. He joins Dr. Andre Grobler, Dr. Mehdi Horri and Dr. Jimi Akinsete at the clinic.
Ovueni adds another family physician to the community, and, with his surgical training, is able to undertake the necessary review process that would allow him to eventually provide surgical services in the area.
“It's great to add another physician to the community,” said St. Joseph's Hospital executive director Greg Hoffort. “We have a growing community that is in need in extra physicians, so the arrival of Dr. Ovueni definitely helps in many regards. It helps with the patients seeking to come to the office. It helps with our ER at the hospital that gets overtaxed when we're short of doctors.”
Ovueni said he is happy to be in Estevan, and he expects that he will be working in a very cooperative and supportive environment.
He received his medical training and surgical training in Nigeria, and he had a family practice in that country. Ovueni came to Canada last year.
“I'm really excited to be working here in Saskatchewan,” said Ovueni.
His spouse, Dr. Constance Ovueni, is also a general practitioner, and wants to begin the review process required by the Saskatchewan College of Medicine. It is hoped she would begin a medical practice in Estevan later this year.
“We didn't learn about that until he came for his site visit some time ago in late summer/ early fall, that his wife is actually a GP, and so we're working with her to see what we can do to get her into the assessment process as soon as possible,” said Hoffort.
Hoffort noted that they have a gynecologist who is scheduled to be in Estevan in early February. The gynecologist still going through the immigration process, but that's expected to be sorted out soon. His arrival will fill a gap in the community, Hoffort said.
Another physician who is interested in coming to Estevan is entering the Saskatchewan physician assessment process this week, and could be in Estevan in the spring.
Hoffort said Dr. Ovueni's arrival is a result of the collaborative efforts of St. Joseph's Hospital, the Sun Country Health Region and the South East Health Committee, which includes representatives of urban and rural municipalities.