“Father of ag medicine” named to Order of Canada

Dr. James Dosman’s career in protecting the health and safety of farmers and their families has earned him new recognition with one of Canada’s top honours.

Dosman, an M.D. and University of Saskatchewan professor deemed the “father of agricultural medicine” in Canada, was named Dec. 30 as an Officer of the Order of Canada by Governor General David Johnston.

Dosman’s goal throughout his work has been to provide safety regulations, education and research for what some have termed one of the most dangerous jobs in North America.

Starting at the U of S in 1975 as head of the respiratory medicine division of its medical school, Dosman worked within Saskatchewan to develop the Agricultural Health and Safety Network, which offers services to over 28,000 farm families.

Dosman has also spearheaded the establishment of the Canadian Coalition for Agricultural Safety and Rural Health and the Canadian Agricultural Safety Program.

One of Dosman’s biggest projects was founding the University of Saskatchewan’s Centre for Agricultural Medicine, now known as the Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture.

Dosman has also been named to the Saskatchewan Order of Merit and as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and most recently was awarded a Distinguished Chair in Agricultural Medicine at the U of S for his career achievements.

Dosman continues to participate in research; since 2000 his work received more than $13 million in research funding, along with about $5 million in private-sector funding since 1990, according to the university.

He currently serves as acting CEO of Agrivita Canada, a non-profit corporation set up by the U of S in 2007 to receive and direct funding for research related to ag health and safety for industry and farm workers and rural residents.

Dosman and the 11 other new recipients of the Order of Canada honours will be invited to accept their insignias at a ceremony “at a later date,” Johnston’s office said Dec. 30.

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