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Physician spotlight: Dr. Hari Priya Akula

From India to Northern Ontario to Dufferin-Caledon: meet our Family Practice Physician

What brought you to Headwaters? 

I came from a climate of over 30 degrees to under 30 degrees when I immigrated from India to Thunder Bay for my residency and to obtain my physician license as an International Medical Graduate. The program drew people to provide health care to underserviced areas. After my residency in Northern Ontario, I answered a recruitment call to Headwaters Health Care Centre, as part of the program requirements to work in a non-urban area. Once I came to Headwaters for the community tour, I never looked anywhere else.  

At the time, my daughter was 9 and really into horses and figure skating. Rumour has it that Dufferin-Caledon is the place to be for both! We moved to Grand Valley to start my practice. Also, as part of the Dufferin Area Family Health Team (DAFHT), I was recruited to the Grand Valley office. It’s the perfect location for me. 

What do you do? 

I’ve been working at Headwaters for 14 years. Currently, I work with Complex Continuing Care patients with chronic health conditions. In the community, I run a family practice and palliative care out of offices in both Grand Valley and Orangeville. I also lead a memory clinic with DAFHT, and I am a DAFHT Board member. 

Most importantly, I'm a parent. I had my son 11 years after my daughter and have become a hockey mom. 

Why do you love your job? 

That’s a tough question! I’d like to believe I can make a difference in my patients’ lives. 

I enjoy getting to know them, their family and what’s important to them. It’s not just about medicine - I feel like my gift is getting to know them as individuals and helping them, medically, but also as a whole person. 

What are your local connections to the Dufferin-Caledon community? 

Since my daughter loves skating and my son loves hockey, we were at the ice arenas at Tony Rose and Alder very often! My daughter also became a skating coach for children.  

Learn more about physicians and midwives in our community by reading the 2022 – 2023 Annual Report.