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Catalyst for Change Award Winners!

Catalyst for Change Award Winners!
By kristalamb
Posted date: June 20, 2024

In May, Diabetes Action Canada (DAC) awarded the first ever Catalyst for Change Awards to three Patient Partners.

The Catalyst for Change Award celebrates Patient Partners who have made outstanding contributions to advancing patient-oriented diabetes research and care, embodying transformative achievements in our community.

The 2024 winners are:

Kate Farnsworth – Mom of a daughter with T1D and supporting a family member with T2D, champion for DIY and other technologies to improve outcomes for people with T1D, and a longstanding member of the DAC Innovations in Type 1 program team.

Ryan Hooey – Person living with T1D and vision loss, advocate for increased accessibility and a member of DAC’s diabetic retinopathy screening program team.

Matt Larson – Person living with T2D, advocate for those experiencing diabetes and homelessness, and a long-time member of the Campbell Lab’s project aimed at improving outcomes for those experiencing homelessness while living with diabetes.

As with all DAC programs, Patient Partners were at the heart of developing this award and co-designing the nomination and selection processes.

“Our Patient Partners had requested this award for years,” says Patient Engagement Lead, Linxi Mitkolli. “We, as a team, did scoping and research on how other networks and organizations all over the world honour their patient partners. Then we brought the ideas to our Patient Partners to co-design how we would implement it.”

Patient Partners helped determine the nomination criteria, ensuring it was transparent and clear, and were part of the selection committee deciding. They participated in every step of the process, including suggesting and supporting a panel discussion by the winners at the DAC Workshop to give Patient Partners increased voice at the event.

Nominations were open to all members of the DAC community, including researchers, Patient Partners, and staff. Self-nominations were encouraged and appreciated.

Congratulations Kate, Ryan and Matt!

Featured in Article

Kate Farnsworth

Matt Larsen

Related Webinars

Tele-ophthalmology program in Canada with Diabetes Action Canada

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes and accounts for 80% of diabetic-related blindness. It is the leading cause of blindness for working age Canadians. Early detection of diabetic retinopathy by regular screening effectively avoids vision loss from diabetes as necessary treatments prevent irreversible retina damage.

Associated Programs

Diabetic Retinopathy Screening

Preventing Diabetic Retinopathy through accessible screening methods and advanced technology.

Knowledge Mobilization and Evaluation

Ensuring that research results are shared effectively with those who can implement them and with end users.

Patient Engagement Through an EDI Lens

Engaging people with diabetes as active partners in health research to maximize the benefits of research for all communities.

Related Podcasts

Diabetes and Homelessness

Episode one features an interview with Patient Partner Anna DiGiandomenico and University of Calgary researcher Dr. David Campbell who discuss their work on a research program that’s shedding light on the impact of homelessness on diabetes treatment and care.

Closed Loop Technolgies and the DIY Community

Episode three features an interview with Patient Partner Kate Farnsworth and Dr. Bruce Perkins about closed loop technologies and the DIY looping community.

Reducing the Risk of Diabetic Retinopathy

Episode five looks at Project OPEN and its potential to reduce the risk of diabetic retinopathy. Malcolm Sissmore and Dr. Michael Brent from UHN Research discuss how this program is trying to make eye screening much more accessible for people living with diabetes.

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