October 15, 2020
GRANDE PRAIRIE – Local residents have increased access to primary care with the arrival of a new family physician now practising in the community.
Dr. Ukulu Grevisse Owanga is a family medicine physician working out of the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Hospital. He is also providing care at the Grande Prairie Primary Care Clinic and will be opening a new clinic with a partner physician in the city later this fall.
“It is great news to be welcoming Dr. Owanga to Grande Prairie,” says Dr. James Pope, Facility Medical Director for the QEII Hospital. “Family physicians are a very important part of a person’s healthcare team. They provide lifelong care to their patients and are often a person’s first point of contact with the healthcare system. His skills will increase access to primary care for residents and support our local medical team.”
Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Dr. Owanga received his medical training at the University of Kinshasa and completed his master’s degree in family medicine at the University of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa. Dr. Owanga also speaks fluent French.
“Alberta’s government welcomes Dr. Owanga to the Grande Prairie region,” says Travis Toews, MLA for Grande Prairie-Wapiti. “Having a new family physician will give residents increased access to the care they need and more support for local medical teams providing excellent care in our community each and every day.”
Dr. Owanga moved to Grande Prairie in mid-August and, prior to that, was practising in McLennan and Fahler for about five years.
“I also extend my warm welcome to Dr. Owanga,” says Tracy Allard, MLA for Grande Prairie. “His addition as a family physician is wonderful news for our community. He will find Grande Prairie a vibrant and friendly city. We are all so pleased he has chosen to practise here and make a difference in the lives of Grande Prairie residents.”
Dr. Owanga and his wife have six children, all boys, ranging in age from 10-year-old twins to a college graduate. His wife is currently studying nursing at Northern Lakes College. When they’re not busy with work and their studies, they enjoy taking walks around the neighbourhood. They are hoping to make Grande Prairie their permanent home.
AHS continues to recruit for family physicians across northern Alberta to meet community needs.
AHS has physician resource planners who are dedicated to identifying and pursuing international and domestic physician recruitment opportunities. They work closely with various community partners and organizations, such as local Health Advisory Councils, the Rural Health Professions Action Plan, and independent physician recruitment and retention committees.
Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.