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Truro marketing campaigns result in success for physician recruitment

Karen Putnam

The Truro-Colchester Partnership for Economic (TCPEP), in partnership with Nova Scotia Health, recently launched two marketing campaigns to recruit physicians to the Truro-Colchester area. The marketing campaigns resulted in over 300 expressions of interest in total from physicians from around the world interested in learning more about practice opportunities in Nova Scotia and living and working in the province.

“We are excited about looking at new ways to partner with communities to help them with attracting health care professionals to their area. While we focus on a provincial approach to recruitment, we have many partners who come forward to showcase their regional advantages and when we work together that synergy is such a benefit,” said Katrina Philopoulos, Director of Physician Recruitment for Nova Scotia Health.

The TCPEP is one of seven regional enterprise networks in Nova Scotia, focused on driving economic development within the area. TCPEP’s key mandates include supporting business startups and promoting strategic population growth. A significant part of their efforts is directed towards physician recruitment and retention, a crucial component of their population growth strategy.

Community & Business Liaison for TCPEP, Karen Putnam’s role involves settlement and integration of new physicians into the community.

“I help with the settlement of physicians coming in to practice here. So, helping them if they have questions about our school system, need daycare, or are looking for a place to live. Then I will try to make those connections and help in any way I can,” explained Karen.

Karen works closely with her local physician recruiters to help with site visits and showcasing opportunities in the Truro area. She also serves as co-chair of the local physician recruitment committee with Dr. Justin Blaauwendraat, a local physician and MD Recruitment Lead with Nova Scotia Health. The committee includes representatives from local government, healthcare providers, and the Chamber of Commerce.

“TCPEP is an extremely valuable partner for Nova Scotia Health. They facilitate a connection to the community and work closely with Nova Scotia Health to ensure physicians are integrated into the community so they can stay here for many years to come,” explained Lindsey Mattinson, Physician Recruitment Consultant for Northern Zone.

Nova Scotia Health and TCPEP are working closely together to connect with candidates from the campaign. Anyone closely involved in physician recruitment knows that the recruitment process is a long one that can see the timeline from first contact to hire stretching over 12 months to even two or three years. However, connecting with physicians to share the practice opportunities in Nova Scotia—whether they are considering a move in one, five, or even ten years—is a success for the entire province.

"There are some physicians that we don't need here in Truro based on the specialty, but other areas in Nova Scotia do. We share these contacts with the hope that they will benefit other areas, and as those areas fill up our residents will benefit downstream from as well,” said Karen.

The idea for a targeted marketing campaign emerged when the opportunity for funding from the Office of Healthcare Professional Recruitment (OHPR) arose. The campaign leveraged Nova Scotia Health’s More Than Medicine brand strategy, which emphasizes the balanced lifestyle for physicians and many professional opportunities available in the province for physicians.

TCPEP partnered with Haylo, a marketing agency experienced in working with Nova Scotia Health, to craft and execute a comprehensive social media campaign. The campaign’s results have been impressive and generated substantial interest, leading to media coverage by CBC News and endorsements from key figures, including the Premier of Nova Scotia.

Together, TCPEP and Nova Scotia Health are building a brighter future for healthcare in Nova Scotia, one physician connection at a time with a little help from the power of digital marketing.


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