Dr Dickinson is a Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health Sciences at the University of Calgary. He is currently on Sabbatical at the Centre for Evidence-Based Practice at Bond University.
His medical degree was from the University of Queensland, and Family Medicine residency at McMaster, then a fellowship at McGill during the writing of the first report of the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Care. He wrote his PhD on Preventive Activities in General Practice at the University of Newcastle. He then worked as the first advisor on General Practice in the Department of Health, in Canberra from 1990 to 1993. Subsequently he was a Professor of General Practice in University of West Australia and then at Chinese University of Hong Kong. He returned to Canada in 2002.
He practices Family Medicine in the teaching clinic at Sheldon Chumir Health Centre in Calgary, and teaches in undergraduate and postgraduate programs. His research is on screening, especially for cancer, and respiratory treatments. He has been involved in changing screening policies in Australia and Hong Kong. He runs the Alberta influenza community surveillance system, which collaborates with the National Flu-watch systems, and contributes to case control studies of influenza vaccine effectiveness.
In 2009 he was appointed to the newly re-established Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care, and chaired their writing group on Cervical Screening, which published their recommendations in January.