Home > Awards and Recognition > UCalgary doctor named Family Physician of the Year

UCalgary doctor named Family Physician of the Year

by Andrea Di Ubaldo

Photo by Andrea Di UBaldo

Photo by Andrea Di Ubaldo

Baryshnikov. Nureyev. Sosnowski?

Had Dr. Mark Sosnowski, this year’s Alberta winner of The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) 2008 Family Physician of the Year award, not become a physician he would have pursued his other passion – ballet.

“I love to dance,” Sosnowski grins. “I don’t have much skill, but I have a lot of enthusiasm. My wife would agree with that for sure.”

It’s a good thing Sosnowski, clinical assistant professor, Department of Family Medicine, University of Calgary, chose medicine, because he’s obviously very good at it. He will be honoured with the CFPC award for his commitment to family medicine at the CFPC’s annual Family Medicine Forum in Toronto during the CFPC’s 5th Annual Family Doctor Week Nov. 24 to 29.

Family Doctor Week proudly acknowledges the outstanding contributions of Canadian family doctors for their dedication to patients and the delivery of high quality health care, and Sosnowski fits that description—or rather, fills that prescription—perfectly.

“I didn’t expect it would go this far when I found out I was nominated. It’s overwhelming and exciting,” he says shaking his head in disbelief.

Each year, the The Reg L. Perkin Awards (the Family Physician of the Year awards) are presented to one physician from each province.

Learning from patients

Sosnowski has known a lot of his patients their whole lives. He has seen the young ones grow into adults. Some have even gone on to marry each other and he is glad he has been a part of those experiences.

“Our experiences shape us and my patients have taught me how to be a good family physician. I think they’ve taught me more than I’ve taught them. They’ve helped develop my character and my compassion,” Sosnowski smiles. “There’s something about knowing your patients for a long time – it’s a huge strength for family medicine.”

Helping family doctors through the Mosaic PCN

Since graduating from UCalgary with an MD in 1978 (Minks), Sosnowski spends his time heading a full family practice and visiting Calgary hospitals and nursing homes providing palliative and long-term care to patients. He is also one of the leaders of the new Mosaic PCN (Primary Care Network) in northeast Calgary, a program that gives family doctors in the community more help to deal with the increasingly complex variety of illnesses they must look out for.

“This program will offer family doctors more tools to provide better care overall to their patients from birth to death,” he says proudly.

Teaching the doctors of tomorrow

Sosnowski is a teacher and mentor. He is thrilled to be connected to faculty residents in community practice, providing advice where needed. He sat on a search committee for the current Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and was very flattered and pleased to be a voice for community family doctors in that process.

“Students are great and challenging. They all seem way smarter than I was around that age,” Sosnowski chuckles. “They’re all well-rounded, great individuals.”

For current and upcoming medical students Sosnowski says family medicine is a great choice.

“You are challenged and get to do something different every day, and maybe most importantly, you make great relationships,” he says proudly.

A compassionate physician, active program leader and caring mentor, it’s no wonder Sosnowski has been named Family Physician of the Year in Alberta. And to think, Sosnowski says he never thought he’d make it into medical school. “I thought the other guys were geniuses and I’d snuck in under the wire. One of my biggest accomplishments was actually graduating!”

About the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Calgary

The U of C’s Faculty of Medicine is a national leader in health research with an international reputation for excellence and innovation in health care research, education and delivery. Through its educational programs, the Faculty of Medicine trains the physicians and scientists who will lead the next generation of health practitioners. Through its clinical work, continuing medical education programs, and close relationship with the Calgary Health Region, the Faculty of Medicine moves new treatments and diagnostic techniques from the laboratory bench to the hospital bedside efficiently and effectively, improving patient care.

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2007 University of Calgary – Faculty of Medicine. All rights reserved.

  1. Andrea
    November 25, 2008 at 11:23 pm

    Congratulations, Dr. Sosnowski! It was great interviewing you.

  2. Kyle
    November 25, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    Congratulations! Yet another award for the University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine. It’s great to see our faculty members honoured in the ways they should be.

  3. Adele Meyers
    November 26, 2008 at 1:10 am

    Congratulations, Markie Bear! Wonderful news and well-deserved.


  4. Mo Watanabe
    November 26, 2008 at 2:10 am

    This is a voice from the past but I remember you so well as a medical student. I am so proud of your achievements and the recognition and the honor you’ve received. You have fulfilled the promise that the medical school saw when you were just starting out. But I didn’t know of your interest in ballet then – I don’t know how I would have advised you had you asked me, but family medicine was the beneficiary and you are making a big difference. Hope our paths cross one of these days so I can congratulate you in person.


  5. Len Aldridge
    November 26, 2008 at 3:10 am

    Wow. Thank you for being such a superb Family Doctor, and thank you for all the time you have given us.
    You are a very special person.
    Len and Barb Aldridge .

  6. V. Wee Yong
    November 26, 2008 at 3:40 am

    Great job indeed!
    Hope you continue to get more accolades!

    Wee Yong
    Awards and Recognition Committee
    Faculty of Medicine, UC

  7. Alison Murray
    November 26, 2008 at 4:48 am

    Absolutely the right choice to give you this award! I remember you as one of the outstanding family docs when I was doing residency in the late 80’s. Glad to hear your work is being recognised!

  8. Werner Becker
    November 26, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    Dear Mark:

    Great news to hear you have been honoured in this way. In my opinion well deserved. Keep up the great work you are doing.

  9. Nicole Halasa
    November 28, 2008 at 5:03 am

    Congratulations Mark:
    It is great to see this award go to such a deserving physician.
    Nicole Halasa and Stan Iwanicki

  10. Janina Sikorski
    December 10, 2008 at 2:20 am

    Dr Sosnowski, you absolutely deserve this award. I am just little person previously working in the same hospital. From voices of patients , co-workers and myself, you have been an excellent doctor and person. Thank you for helping with my daughter whom you haven’t seen, but you were right with discovering possible diagnosis. I hope I will be able to come back to my job in future to congratulate you again. Janina

  11. Wendy Tink
    December 15, 2008 at 5:25 am

    Truly deserving! Thanks Mark. You are an inspiration to us all. Wendy and Bob

  12. Mary Ann Fielding
    December 21, 2008 at 5:59 am

    It is a privilege to have you as our Family Doctor. Your wisdom, compassion and knowledge have been a blessing. You are truly one of the finest physicians to ever walk this planet. It is great to see you publicly recognized.
    Doug, Mary Ann, Mark and Kevin Fielding

  13. Jaime Bernard
    January 16, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    Dr Sosnowski, good for you!! Now everyone knows what we always have… You are a terrific doctor, so kind, gentle and helpful. I always feel like I’m in good hands after I’ve seen you. You truly deserve this award, congrats!!

  14. David Farquharson
    May 14, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    Dr Mark,

    Congrats on your recognition. You’ve been my GP since 1981 and I certainly agree that your achievements are deserved. However I don’t recall reading “modest” in any of these other notes. I’ve visited your practice a few times since your recognition and haven’t seen (certainly not heard) a thing about this achievement. Next visit I’d like you to share your award.

  15. Christine Wash
    May 14, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    Dr. Sosnowski –

    My mother’s maiden name was Sosnowski. She was born in 1915 in Pennsylvania, and then moved to New Jersey for most of her life. When she was small, her father, Nikodym Sosnowski, left the family and moved to Canada. Once there, he marrried and had an unknown number of children with his 2nd wife. I am wondering if you might perhaps be descended from him, and thus a distant relative of mine? If so, I would appreciate hearing what you know.

  16. Maria
    June 18, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    Hello Dr. Sosnowski,

    Congratulations on your recognition. Job well done!

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