Dr. Russell Doig established Doig Optometry after 20 years of practice in a variety of clinics. One of the reasons he created his own practice is to set and maintain a high level of standard and quality for eye care.
“I’m really lucky I made the career choice I did. I was in my early twenties at the time and really, at that age how do you know what job you’ll like for the rest of your life? I’ve discovered that I’m a ‘people person’ and being an optometrist allows me to meet very interesting people and use my love of sciences to solve interesting problems.”
Dr. Russell Doig
Born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Dr. Doig attended the University of Calgary before studying and graduating from the University of Waterloo as a Doctor of Optometry in 1996. He reflects, “My third child was born six months after my graduation from the University of Waterloo. I needed to put shoes on their feet and food on the table right away. I decided to partner with other doctors in established practices because growing a new optometry practice takes patience.”
He went on to practice optometry in Burlington and Hamilton, Ontario before moving back to Alberta to practice in Brooks, Drumheller, Didsbury, and Calgary. Dr. Doig joined the Strathmore Vision Clinic in April 1997. 20 years after graduating from the University of Waterloo, Dr. Doig created Doig Optometry with his wife and business partner, Dr. Chorel.
“Opening my own optometry practice and building it from the ground up has been one of my greatest dreams since my career began. In 2015, the children were grown or nearly grown, and the timing was right for me to start this chapter of my career. In early 2016, I signed the lease and Dr. Chorel went to work designing the office”.
“I really only have one career goal,” says Dr. Doig. “That goal is to turn every patient encounter into a patient success story.”
In each of the patient success stories we just talked about, discovering the cause of the patient’s symptoms has required directing the examination and testing away from the routine list of tests done at a regular eye exam. From these experiences, Dr. Doig has adopted a guiding principle or philosophy that he uses every day in his patient care:
“If you haven’t found the cause of the problem, it’s because you haven’t done the test that tells you the cause of the problem. So keep testing.”
Every patient success story is the final outcome of patiently directing the patient process. Assessment and testing of the problem causing symptoms for a patient, and creating a strategy to address and fix that problem are the only pathways to success. Dr. Doig has committed and re-committed himself and his staff to this process.
“Whenever we struggle to find the perfect outcome for our patients, we review and discuss together as a team how we can bring about a more successful outcome for our patients. Each time, we seem to circle back to the priorities defined in our Patient Care Priority™.”
Dr. Russell Doig
Dr. Doig believes that the strategies that lead to patient success stories are not new.
“There is no new strategy. There is only recommitment to those strategies that work.”
Those key strategies involve slowing down, listening, gathering information, discussing options and following through on the plan. When needed, it also involves follow up and revision of the plan after more testing. Doig Optometry was started and created to be a place where Doctors Doig and Chorel can practice just that way.
Dr. Doig remembers an important success story from very early in his career.
“A young child was in for her first eye exam. She had just turned six and was struggling at school. When she came into the office, she was holding onto a fist full of her mothers clothing, and clinging very close to her. We discovered a high, far-sighted prescription. When this child was picking up her glasses, I happened to pass through the eyeglass dispensary. I picked up a cartoon book and we started flipping through the pages. When we turned past the artist’s drawing of a character roasting marshmallows on a many branched stick, this child turned the page back and pointed at each marshmallow, counting them out loud. This was a simple thing, but it revealed the importance of quality glasses, and the impact good vision can have on a patient’s quality of life. According to the patient’s mother, this was the first time she had seen her daughter connect to a book that way.”
Other patients have experienced successful outcomes and have taken the time to write Dr. Doig to say things like:
Each of these instances of success required unique and individual strategies to help find the solution that will make the patient’s glasses work well for them. Other patients have learned of significant health concerns they thought were an eyeglass problem. Due to patient privacy, we cannot share the specific details, but patients and family have said things like:
“Words cannot express how much we appreciate what you did for our mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.”
Whether it’s helping patients get a great pair of glasses, or getting a patient the urgent health care they need to save and prolong their life in good health, these sorts of success stories are very rewarding.
Dr. Doig and Dr. Chorel married in 2009 and together, they parent 6 awesome children. Outside of work, Dr. Doig values being involved in the community. He has been a missionary and remains active in his faith, currently teaching a New Testament class for youth. A true leader, Dr. Doig has been an assistant football coach as well as a boy scout leader.
His hobbies include ballroom dancing, learning to play the banjo, sketching, and photography.
Doig Optometry was established by two people who genuinely care and have a passion for making a difference in the lives of others, and that impression is felt through the office. Dr. Doig and Dr. Chorel wanted to create a place where patient care is a top priority and where they can make decisions that produce the best outcomes for their patients.
The team at Doig Optometry is personable, friendly, and are genuinely committed to providing the best patient care possible. When it comes to something as significant and life-altering as your eye health, the Doig team understands the importance of honest communication and collaboration. When you choose Doig Optometry, you can feel the quality of care at every appointment.