Dr. Priddle received his MD from the University of Western Ontario in 1926. His research interests included hypertension and hypercholesterolemia in older individuals. Upon graduation, he took his internship and a residency at Buffalo City Hospital, then set up practice in Almond, New York. After 18 months he returned to Canada, establishing a general practice in Toronto from 1929-34. In 1931, he published his first research on the link between sodium, potassium and hypertension in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. He was one of the earliest advocates of a low sodium diet to reduce hypertension, at a time when this procedure was considered radical by many.
In 1934-35, he took time off for further post graduate training in London, England. In 1935 he became a member of The Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine (FPM) which was founded in the United Kingdom after the First World War and pioneered the development of postgraduate educational programmes in all branches of medicine. He returned to practice in Toronto from 1935-43, limiting this to internal medicine.
In 1943 he enlisted with the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps and in 1946 was discharged with the rank of Major. He was certified as a Specialist in Internal Medicine by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario and set up a private practice in internal medicine in 1946.
In 1953, Dr. Priddle was appointed consultant in geriatrics to the Ontario Department of Social and Family Services while still carrying his extensive consulting practice in internal medicine. In this capacity he helped re-write the Homes for the Aged Act to upgrade medical service; he introduced the first 5-year medical form to the homes, and established the program of comprehensive pre-admission material on residents’ medical histories.
In 1955 he helped found the Ontario Geriatric Research Society, and was elected chairman of the medical advisory board of the society.
In 1958, Dr. Priddle became the first chairman of the minister’s Advisory Committee on Geriatric Studies. Among the projects he pioneered was the establishment of a geriatric study centre in 1959 to assure a high standard of medical care to the geriatric patient, to study methods of prevention of deterioration, and to study the causes and prevention of diseases associated with aging.
Another project he instigated was the establishment of an acute geriatric ward at the Toronto Western Hospital in 1961. He was also one of the leaders in establishing an office on aging of the provincial government, an interdepartmental committee on aging and an institute for geriatric studies. (CMA Journal)
In 1962, Dr. Priddle established the J.W. Crane Memorial Library of Gerontology and Geriatrics. The “Crane” is Canada’s largest and best-known special library on aging and long-term care.
In 1970, Dr. Priddle was presented with the Malford W. Thewlis Award for outstanding contributions to the welfare of the American Geriatrics Society.
Dr. Priddle received an Ontario Medical Association Life Membership which is awarded to those members who have made an outstanding contribution to the work of the OMA, the medical profession and medical science, or common good at the provincial level.
Dr. Priddle also received a Canadian Medical Association Honorary Membership which is awarded to those members who have made outstanding contributions to the CMA on its Board of Directors, Committees, General Council or to Canadian medicine.
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