After pursing her medical training in a whirlwind of locations, Sara Accardi is looking forward to settling into a community and creating longstanding relationships with new patients.
Growing up in the suburbs of Toronto, Accardi completed her bachelor of science degree in chemistry and medical biophysics at Western University. She then attended medical school at SABA University School of Medicine in the Dutch Caribbean island of Saba, south of St. Maarten. In completing her residency at the University of Ottawa, she pursued medical work experience in many cities, from Atlanta, Georgia to Rochester, New York to Miami, Florida to Brooklyn, New York to Montreal, Quebec and London, Ontario.
Accardi says this diversity of experience really helped broaden her perspective. “I think when people grow up and train and practice in one place you can really get caught up in the way things are done there, rather than remembering to check in with the bigger picture and learning that things can be done different ways in different places, and some ways might be better.”
She adds that she hopes to bring a lot of the best of what she’s seen to her own new practice. “I picked up a lot of different experiences in terms of how to run a practice, how to do the best type of medicine, how to continue learning as a doctor from a whole bunch of different views, a whole bunch of different cultures,” she says.
Saba, a tiny island just five square miles with only around 1000 residents, also inspired Accardi to consider a smaller community. “It was beautiful. To be honest, it's kind of got me thinking of going to a more rural place because I just like the feel of living in a smaller town,” she says. Drawn to Eastern Ontario by the fact that her fiancé’s family lives in Gatineau, the pair were looking for a community, and were charmed by Alexandria immediately. “We both just loved the town. It's so sweet. Everybody was so friendly. We decided on the spot that that's where I would go,” she says.
While the couple will live in Vaudreuil-Dorion, Quebec for now (Accardi’s fiancé is finishing up dental school at McGill University in Montreal), Accardi has already set up her practice in Alexandria, where she plans to continue pursuing her medical interests in preventative health and women's health.
She’s also eager to get to know her community. “I'm looking forward to finally having my own patients that I can build a relationship with and I'll see year after year,” she says. In fact, relationships are what she likes about family medicine full stop. “I love the relationship that you build with people, and just knowing that you're there to support people and help them through their tough times,” she says.