Duncan (Cowichan Valley)


Welcome Message

Welcome to the Cowichan ICC. Our program has evolved substantially over the last seven years. Our past students have been a vital component of this evolution. Students participating in our program need to be self-directed, flexible and ready for a challenge. This is an amazing year as a learner and is the start of your transformation from student to physician.

My Program Administrator, Stacey Taylor, and I look forward to sharing this process with you, and to having some fun in the process. I did my medical training in South Africa at the University of Witwatersrand and worked in hospitals in various disciplines, followed by a transition into Family Medicine in Cape Town in 1990. We moved to Canada in 1998 and I worked in Sparwood, BC, for almost 4 years.  We have lived and worked in the gorgeous Cowichan Valley since 2002. I have been a Family Medicine preceptor in the ICC since its inception, and am also the site lead for the third year Rural Family Medicine rotation for Vancouver Island.

I may be new to the role of Site Director for Duncan, having taken over in 2017 from Dr. Maggie Watt, who established the ICC program in Duncan, and who is now the ICC Program Director, but I am passionate about teaching and ensuring that you have an excellent experience as a learner in our community.

We have a great collection of preceptors, a community full of excellent learning experiences, and many opportunities for superb recreational activities.

We invite you to come and join us for an unforgettable year.

Dr. Paul Terlien
Site Director

General Program Overview

The Cowichan (Duncan) ICC was established in 2010. Medical education has a long history in the Cowichan Valley being host to rural practice students since the 1970’s. Since the beginning, the medical community has been very engaged with the ICC program and we work together to provide a high level of clinical experience and supportive environment for the ICC students. It is a great place to live and work.

Our schedule is longitudinal, meaning that you will have repeated exposure to all of the disciplines through the course of the year. A typical schedule for a Duncan student is:

    • Two half days per week – Family Practice clinics with preceptors
    • Specialty Local Experience: Anesthesiology, Dermatology (Nanaimo), Internal Medicine, Obstetrics/Gynecology, Ophthalmology, Orthopedics, General Surgery (2-2 week bursts), Pediatrics, and Psychiatry
    • Emergency Room Shifts and Family Practice Obstetrical Clinic
    • Local Academic Half Days (AHDs)
    • Independent Study Time
    • Longitudinal Community Experiences
    • Multidisciplinary Care – spend time with other health care providers

Community Profile

Welcome to the ‘Warm Land’. The Cowichan Region is a collection of communities that services a population of approximately 80,000 people. Duncan, where the Cowichan ICC is based, is located 1 hour each way to Victoria and Nanaimo, and 20 minutes to Vancouver by float plane. It consists of the communities from Mill Bay in the South to Ladysmith in the North and out West to Lake Cowichan and Nitnat. We have a large First Nations (Hul’qumi’num) community with over 6,200 members, and this adds a rich cultural component to our community.

Who can describe us better than Tourism Cowichan: Fertile valleys, rolling mountains, undulating rivers and pristine lakes come together to form the backdrop of the Cowichan; a place of incredible beauty, timeless traditions and tidal rhythms…Cowichan offers a wide choice of things to see and do throughout the year, from exploring the wine country trails, to unforgettable fishing, kayaking, hiking and golfing adventures….explore and engage in our rich cultural heritage and discover the many historic sites and artists galleries along the way. This unique area of Southern Vancouver Island is increasingly recognized internationally for its charming communities, the local cuisine scene and its overall ambiance and quality of life. Whether you come for a day or stay for a lifetime, your senses will be filled by your experiences in the Cowichan – its sights, its sounds and its tastes will be your guide as each day presents a new adventure.” [from the Toursim Cowichan website, 2012]

For further information, please contact:

Dr. Tom Rimmer
ICC Site Director, Duncan

Stacey Taylor
ICC Program Assistant, Duncan