Doctors accept 500 new patients

Phone process slowed initially by number of single patients

John DeMings
Published on June 21, 2014

It looks like 500 more people in the Digby area now have a family physician.

A new family physician, Dr. Hussam Abu-Seido, started accepting new patients yesterday, June 20. As well, Dr. Pejman Nourian, who opened his practice here in late 2013, was also accepting new patients.

Both were taking in a total of 500 patients through an expanded telephone application process

A spokesperson for South West Health said today that it took a little longer than expected to reach the goal of 500 new patients.

The doctor’s offices accepted the 500th new patient around 7:15 p.m. The phone line opened at 3 p.m., and was to stay open until 6 p.m.—or until 500 patients were accepted.

“I understand it took a little longer because, at least for the first hour or so, many of the callers were single patients,” said spokesperson Fraser Mooney.

“That means many of the new patients were being accepted one at a time, as opposed to someone calling up with the names of family members as well.

“We certainly had people calling with names of family members too, but not as many as expected, at least for the first while.”

While the phone application process was underway, comments on The Digby Courier Facebook page showed some frustration at the need for constant redialing, and a number of people gave up at 6 p.m., although others were successful over the next 75 minutes.

The doctors will take some time to book appointments with their new patients and start preparing for when they will be able to accept even more patients in the Digby area in the future.

South West Health advises there will be further opportunities to become a patient of Dr. Abu-Seido or Dr. Nourian as both will be accepting more patients at a later date.

All announcements about family physicians accepting new patients are shared with local news media, and posted on the South West Health website