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Health and Community Services
March 20, 2012

The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Susan Sullivan, Minister of Health and Community Services:

Minister Pays Tribute to Dr. Nigel Rusted

Mr. Speaker, I rise in this Honourable House today to remember and pay tribute to Dr. Nigel Rusted who passed away on Sunday, March 18. Born in 1907 in Salvage, Dr. Rusted’s long and distinguished career as a medical professional, pioneering surgeon and son of Newfoundland and Labrador will long be remembered by his many patients, the medical community and all of the people of our province.

Dr. Rusted graduated from the inaugural class of Memorial University College in 1927 where he received his diploma in arts and sciences. He then went on to complete his medical degree at Dalhousie medical school in Halifax and in 1933 he joined the Newfoundland Medical Association.

During the early years of his career, Dr. Rusted travelled by hospital ship and ferry to isolated coastal communities in our province and he was the first health officer to travel along the coast of Labrador.

Mr. Speaker, among his many other firsts, Dr. Rusted is known for being the first to perform several operations in Newfoundland and Labrador including the partial surgical removal of the stomach, cleft lip and cleft palate repair. He went on to become renowned for his cleft lip and cleft palate surgeries performing 560 reconstructive surgeries during his career.

Dr. Rusted has been recognized for his contributions to our province many times and was awarded the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador in 2007 and the Order of Canada in 2011.

Mr. Speaker, Dr. Nigel Rusted, like many of the physicians who have and continue to work in our province, dedicated himself to the act of bettering the lives of the people around him. Even after his retirement in 1987, Dr. Rusted’s presence continued to be felt in the medical community as he acted as a mentor to medical students and in 2002 he established the Dr. Nigel Rusted Trust to promote the study of the humanities in health.

Mr. Speaker, I ask all Members of this House to remember Dr. Rusted for the work he has done, the people he has helped and for representing the best aspects and characteristics of all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

2012 03 20             1:50 p.m.

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