A legacy of giving

Dr. Edward W. Papp, Edmonton family physician

 

Edmonton family physician Dr. Edward W. Papp reflects on how giving back to his community has enriched his life.

I’ve always lived my life by the four ‘Ls’, which means to live, to learn, to love and to leave a legacy.

Dr. Edward W. Papp’s involvement as a community volunteer began long before he began practicing medicine.

“I describe myself as chronic volunteer,” laughs Dr. Papp, who learned the importance of giving back by watching how his parents contributed to their community.

“We lived on a farm, and they would cook a huge turkey dinner for the town each Christmas. It was a huge undertaking, but it really instilled a sense of the importance of helping others.”

The desire to help others also influenced his decision to go into family medicine more than 40 years ago.

“Being a family physician is a natural fit, because you have a chance to really get involved in helping people,” he explains. “Medicine is a profession that allows you to make a difference.”

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Over the years, his commitment to helping people also led to involvement in a variety of school, church and community groups, where he has done everything, including serving as a Boy Scout leader, organizing community Halloween dances and volunteering with several Catholic Social Services fundraising campaigns.

“I’ve worn a lot of hats over the years and just tried to help wherever I was needed.”

His willingness to step in and help led him to oversee the medical services for the mass site when the pope visited Edmonton in 1984, collect books for overseas donation and volunteer with Edmonton’s Universiade Games.

“I’ve always lived my life by the four ‘Ls’, which means to live, to learn, to love and to leave a legacy,” says Dr. Papp, who is also a proud father and grandfather.

“And I’m at that stage in my life where I can look back and say ‘hey, this legacy is something I’ve been building all along and something that enriched my life.’ I’d like other physicians to see that giving back isn’t an obligation, but an opportunity to do something that will give you joy.”

The AMA advances patient-centered, quality care by advocating for and supporting physician leadership and wellness.