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Dr. Al-Omran is a clinician investigator and currently appointed as a Scientist at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital and a Full Member at the Institute of Medical Science (IMS). His research interests include: atherosclerosis bench to bedside with a special interest in peripheral arterial disease and Diabetic Foot; clinical epidemiology and health services research with a focus on using large healthcare administrative databases to conduct population-based analyses of individuals with aortic, carotid, and peripheral arterial disease; knowledge translation; and systematic reviews and meta-analyses.
Dr. Al-Omran has published widely in high-impact peer-reviewed journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, Circulation, JAMA, JACC and the Journal of Vascular Surgery. Dr. Al-Omran has been the recipient of several teaching and research awards, and he has supervised research trainees of all levels including undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate fellows.
Mike Alexander, an Anishinaabe artist and athlete who has struggled with depression and addiction. He is a Sixties Scoop survivor and recently became a member of Diabetes Action Canada’s Indigenous Patient Circle.
Geoff’s professional interests include clinical effectiveness, health services outcome and evaluation, health services organization and management, knowledge transfer, acute pre-hospital and emergency care, community and home care, and the health care system. His research focuses on reducing health disparities and promoting equity for vulnerable populations, applying measures of access and outcomes at a national level, techniques to improve prescription drug utilization, outcomes of hospital staffing, maternity care guideline implementation demonstration, and improved techniques for analyzing cesarean section rates.
Geoff has been involved in health services research for over 20 years and has extensive experience in the use of administrative data and in observational research methods. His research has been funded by provincial and national research agencies and he has published extensively. He plays a leadership role in IHPME’s graduate education program and is actively involved in supervision and mentorship of graduate students and post-doctoral fellows.
Dr. Andersson has three decades of experience designing and managing evidence-based primary health care research initiatives. In 1985, he founded CIET, a group of NGOs, institutes, foundations and charities dedicated to community-based research and planning. His main research interests are related to primary prevention in areas such as diabetes, dengue, HIV, gender violence and maternal mortality. He has supported Indigenous communities in Canada to pursue their own research objectives, often relating to diabetes and cultural resilience for over 20 years. A specific project related to diabetes worked towards revitalizing traditional foodways to reduce diabetes risk across First Nations communities.
He has held numerous research grants from CIHR, GHRI, CIDA, IDRC and private foundations. He has supervised more than 50 graduate students and has over 200 publications in peer-reviewed journals
Ananya’s unique dual training in qualitative and quantitative research methods enables her to study the social determinants and lived experiences of diabetes among South Asian migrant communities living in Canada and design health promotion programs for this high-risk ethnic population. The focus of her public health research exemplifies a commitment to providing a strong foundation in methodology guided by principles of the socio-ecological framework, intersectionality, community-based participatory research and cultural safety.
Her interdisciplinary research embeds a strong emphasis on community-based participatory research (CBPR), which is grounded in collaboration and partnership. Often, the research questions she pursues are community-defined problems in the context of the social determinants of health using mixed-methods. This allows for the innovative adaptation of existing resources; explores local knowledge and perceptions; empowers people by considering them agents who can investigate their own situations. She examines epidemiologic trends, conducts qualitative research, and designs evidence-based health programs. Dr. Banerjee has received multiple research awards and tri-council grants including from CIHR, SSHRC and the Lawson Foundation that has recognized the novelty and value of her research
Ereny’s academic interests are in medical education research, particularly in interprofessional education and technology enhanced patient education. Her current study examines the role of numeracy in diabetes management for teens with type 1 diabetes and the effect of an innovative video game intervention on numeracy skills. Dr. Bassilious has an academic and clinical interest in pediatric obesity and type 2 diabetes
Tamara and Kenya are mother and daughter from northern Manitoba Tataskweyak First Nation. Kenya was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 9 in 2010. During this time Tamara says she felt alone, with no resources in the north for supports for families dealing with this illness. They decided to relocate to Winnipeg to be closer to health team, to get educated together. Tamara and Kenya’s goal is to take what they’ve learnt, to support our communities and families to share their story and experience to bring awareness in any way they can, and help educate children about diabetes.
The primary focus of the research program is to develop a better understanding of how behaviours develop and change over time, particularly with regard to participation in physical activity. Specific aspects of the research include identifying determinants of behavioural change and investigating the effects of behaviour change on health outcomes, including the management of diabetes. Other determinants of optimal diabetes care are also investigated from an epidemiological perspective using administrative databases. The aims are to identify more efficient and cost-effective clinical and public health practices.
Ron is an active advocate for dementia, caregiving, aging, and research communities. As a caregiver to his father who lived with Alzheimer’s for 10+ years to age in place at home until January 2018, Ron utilized technology, community, creative strategies and access to research to support his family’s life to live well and as best as possible. In recent years, Ron has been invited to do presentations locally and internationally for Alzheimer’s Societies, communities, police, educators, innovators and corporations. He shares his knowledge on caregiving as we age, ways to use technology for caring, and living safely with dementia, especially for those at risk of wandering and going missing. He is an active member, advisor, and mentor to numerous organizations and educational institutions such as AGE-WELL NCE, Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) at Baycrest, City of Toronto’s Seniors Strategy, SE Health (formerly known as Saint Elizabeth Health Care) and the Translational Research Program (TRP) at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine. Further in his past, Ron has a background in Computer Sciences, Space and Communication Sciences, Marine Aquaculture, Life Coaching and Culinary Arts. He was the Founder and Executive Director of a Youth Career and Employment Centre that served over 30,000 young people, immigrants and career changers in the Toronto area during its’ operation.
Digital health strategies have the potential to empower patients and transform healthcare services, but it is not clear how these technologies should be regulated and endorsed within our healthcare system. Dr. Onil Bhattacharyya, Frigon-Blau Chair in Family Medicine Research, works closely with policy makers and system partners to evaluate new virtual care models that address system needs and are poised to scale, particularly for patients with complex needs. His research focuses on implementing new virtual care models within a particular clinical context and modifying them until he finds a balance between benefits and barriers for both patients and providers. Addressing factors such as the right features, which clinical model it supports, who is likely to benefit and what types of benefits can be expected help to improve a tool’s successful implementation. Currently, Dr. Bhattacharyya’s research is leading evaluations of virtual visits in primary care, remote monitoring in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, care coordination for frail elderly people in rural areas and eye screening for diabetes using digital cameras in primary care to improve health outcomes for patients with complex needs.
Denis P. Blondin is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at the Université de Sherbrooke and researcher at the Centre de recherche du Centre hospitalier universitaire de Sherbrooke (CRCHUS). His research focuses primarily on the role of heat generating organs such as skeletal muscles and brown adipose tissue in lipid and glucose metabolism, particularly in response to various environmental conditions, funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC).
Dr. Booth’s research focuses on health outcomes related to diabetes; specifically how socioeconomic, environmental and health care factors influence the risk of diabetes and its complications. She has extensive experience in using large provincial health care and survey databases, and in using geographic information systems (GIS) methodology to study contextual factors influencing the development of diabetes. One of her major research interests is on the built environment and its role in the obesity and diabetes epidemics. Dr. Booth has made major contributions to diabetes policy and practice at both the national and provincial levels. She has served on several advisory committees for the Public Health Agency of Canada’s Canadian Chronic Disease Surveillance System and she was the Methodology Chair for the 2013 Canadian Diabetes Association Clinical Practice Guidelines.
Dr. Marie Carole Boucher is Clinical Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at the Ophthalmology department of the Université de Montréal and practices as a medical and surgical retina specialist at the Maisonneuve-Rosemont University Ophthalmology Center. She is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology. Her main research interest is diabetic retinopathy (DR) with a focus on teleophthalmology as a mean of enhancing access to DR screening for all diabetic individuals and with a specific interest to that end in screening software, artificial intelligence and in the development of a diabetic and image data registry to support research for DR and the search for more efficient and cost-efficient practices to reduce visual disability from DR. Dre Boucher has published a number of scientific articles on this subject and has pioneered the development of teleophthalmology programs for DR in Quebec. She has initiated the development of Canadian guidelines for DR screening and surveillance as well as laid the foundations of interdisciplinary multi-institutional collaborations in artificial intelligence for ophthalmology for DR and other major eye diseases.
Denis is recently retired and has been living with type-1 diabetes for 35 years. In 2015, he had his first contact with the world of health research. First as a participant in a research project on diabetes and then as a committee member aiming at promoting and involving patients as research partners. Denis is particularly interested and passionate about all measures / ideas / projects leading to participatory and dynamic integration of patients in research. Denis is currently Chair of the Comité stratégique patient-partenaire du Centre de recherche du centre hospitalier universitaire de Sherbrooke (CRCHUS), a member of the Communauté de pratique des patients et citoyens partenaires de la recherche en santé au Québec (CPPCP-RSQ) de l’Unité de soutien SRAP du Québec, and a participant in two research projects with Diabetes Action Canada.
Jim a clinical research manager within the Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) Collaborative and Program Manager for the Health Technology Assessment and Network Analytics program within Diabetes Action Canada. His research interests include the development of methods related to the conduct of clinical trials, and other studies, designed to help inform health policy decisions related to technologies and interventions used within the health system. He is a pharmacist and holds a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy and Master of Science, specializing in pharmacology, from the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto.
He is also an Assistant Professor (part-time) in the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence and Impact (HE&I), Faculty of Health Sciences at McMaster University where he provides instruction within the Health Research Methodology graduate program.
Jim has been a member of the DAC team since 2018, in the role of Program Manager within the Health Technology Assessment and Network Analytics group. Diabetes research is a major focus and he brings a wide range of skills in health technology assessment, health services research, quantitative research, clinical trials and observational study design. Current work includes the use of provincial administrative data to guide diabetic retinopathy screening, a developmental evaluation to guide the development of a foot and wound care pathway for individuals living with diabetes and the network evaluation for Diabetes Action Canada.
Anne-Sophie’s research aims to understand the patients’ experience with diabetes self-management, to inform on the effectiveness, benefits and risks of different diets and to explore strategies for timely access to diabetes education and support. Her approach builds on close collaboration between patients, clinicians and researchers. She is co-directing the development and management of a prospective registry of patients with type 1 diabetes in Quebec (BETTER registry) and she is leading the development of an online self-guided training program to improve access to diabetes education.
Dr. Michael Brent leads the development of a national Diabetic Retinopathy screening program that will be accessible to all Canadians living with diabetes. A best practices approach for early diagnosis and management of Diabetic Retinopathy will reduce blindness and visual disability. Tele-ophthalmology will be an important program component , with emphasis on indigenous and inner city communities. Patient engagement in research protocols, and attention to sex and gender issues will be essential cornerstones of program development. Novel imaging equipment, and automated grading software will be integrated into the screening program. A national clinical trials network will be established to assess new treatments for diabetic retinopathy.
My name is Marie Hélène Monique Brière,I am of indigenous descent, Maliseet of Viger, Cacouna, and type 2 diabetic. I participated in a research project “Partner patient platform” which took place in 2018 with Marie-Claude Tremblay, Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Laval. This project brought together Indigenous people living with type 2 diabetes. I loved my meeting with Marie-Claude as well as the other patient partners. I discovered a world hitherto unknown to me. Following our participation in the Diabetes Action Canada conference held in Toronto in 2018, I really understood my role as a patient partner. My involvement in various research projects is limited to those that are held in French because my knowledge of the English language is minimal. I love these meetings which allow me to share my point of view and my experience of living with type 2 diabetes, and which I believe can help researchers; they see us as equal research partners with them, which is very rewarding. Many thanks to all of you for giving us the chance to work with you.
Adalsteinn (Steini) Brown is the Dean of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto and the Dalla Lana Chair of Public Health Policy at the University. Past roles include senior leadership roles in policy and strategy within the Ontario Government, founding roles in start-up companies, and extensive work on performance measurement. He received his undergraduate degree in government from Harvard University and his doctorate from the University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar.
Dr. Butalia is actively involved in clinical medicine, research, and teaching. She was awarded prestigious fellowship awards from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and Alberta Innovates-Health Solutions (AI-HS) during her training. She now holds the National Diabetes Canada New Investigator Award.
Her research interests are in innovative tools and strategies to improve diabetes and other cardiovascular risk factors in the community. Her program of work importantly engages and is informed by people with diabetes (i.e. patients), physicians, care providers and decision-makers.
Finally, she is a co-author of several national clinical practice guidelines for Diabetes Canada (formerly the Canadian Diabetes Association) and Hypertension Canada.
Dr. Joseph Cafazzo is the inaugural Wolfond Chair in Digital Health and Lead for the Centre of Global eHealth Innovation at the University Health Network. As a biomedical engineer, Dr. Cafazzo observes healthcare delivery from the inside-out and works on ways to keep people out of hospital by creating technologies that allow for self-care at home. Since 2004, he has led the team to perform academic research and human factors evaluation services for private companies and public institutions, including national and provincial governmental agencies, start-ups and multi-national companies, and clinical patient safety leaders. Over time he has built an intricate network of clinicians, designers, engineers, researchers, that challenge the norms of healthcare and enable patients and their families. Together they push the boundaries of what’s possible, which has led to the creation of technologies that act to facilitate patient self-care of complex chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma, end-stage renal disease and congestive heart failure.
David is a specialist in Endocrinology and Metabolism and an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Community Health Sciences and Cardiac Sciences. His research interest is improving equity in health services delivery for those with chronic diseases.
Melanie Campbell pursues research in optics of the eye, accommodation, presbyopia, ophthalmic corrections and ophthalmic diagnostic instruments. Her current research interests include defining the quality of the optical image formed on the retina; studying the optical properties of the crystalline lens and eye during development and in the older eye and integrating adaptive optics and polarization methods into instruments which image the rear of the eye. Her basic research led to improved quality of clinical images of the fundus of the eye. The Waterloo confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope that was developed by Professor Campbell’s group gave the first live images of the cones of the human eye.
Professor Campbell is a Fellow of the Optical Society of America and received the 2004 Rank Prize in Optoelectronics for studies of the gradient of refractive index in the crystalline lens.
Dr. Carpentier’s research interests include: 1) the role of postprandial fatty acid metabolism in the development of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases; 2) the investigation of brown adipose tissue metabolism in diabetes; and 3) the anti-diabetic mechanisms of bariatric surgery. He is also involved in translational research in collaboration with private partners using in vivo investigations techniques his laboratory develops to help advance diagnostic and treatment of diabetes and lipid disorders.
David has wide clinical and research interests, encompassing schizophrenia and related disorders, bipolar disorder, OCD spectrum disorders and disorders of body image. He has a longstanding interest in the impact of licit and illicit substances on the brain and body, and is actively engaged in programmes addressing the physical health of the mentally ill and the mental health of the physically ill. He has published widely in the scientific literature and is a frequent speaker at scientific meetings. His broader interests include music, literature, theatre and art.
Tracey, RN, MScN, is the research coordinator on the study, Aging, Community and Health Research Unit (ACHRU) Community Partnership Program for Diabetes Self-Management for Older Adults – Canada. Tracey is a Registered Nurse and has experience in conducting multi-site RCTs related to older adults with multiple chronic conditions.
Dr. Chaudhary is a vitreo-retinal surgeon, Chief of Ophthalmology & Associate Professor of Surgery at Hamilton Regional Eye Institute, McMaster University.
As an educator, he acts as Retina Chair for the McMaster University Ophthalmology residency training program and has been the recipient of the surgical and medical Teacher of the Year Award three times.
As a researcher, he has secured multiple peer-reviewed grants for research in tele-ophthalmology, age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and posterior segment drug delivery systems. He is the site Principal Investigator for the international DRCR network and sits on the steering committee for multi-national clinical trials in retina. Dr. Chaudhary supervises Master’s level thesis students in translational retinal research and was appointed Associate Member, McMaster School of Biomedical Engineering.
He acts as Editor-in-Chief for the Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology. He was awarded the Senior Honor Award by the American Society of Retinal Specialists.
His administrative experience extends to the provincial level as regional physician lead for ophthalmology and as a clinical advisor for multiple provincial ophthalmology working groups. At the national level, he acts as CPD Director for the Canadian Retina Society and serves as a board member for the Canadian Retina Society.
Following his clinical training in Nephrology, Dr. Cherney completed his PhD in human renal physiology at the Institute of Medical Science, University of Toronto in 2008. He is currently Professor of Medicine, University of Toronto and a Clinician Scientist at the University Health Network and Mount Sinai Hospitals, where he is a Senior Scientist and director of the Renal Physiology Laboratory. He is currently supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the JDRF, the Heart and Stroke Richard Lewar Centre of Excellence, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and the Banting and Best Diabetes Centre. He is also supported by a Department of Medicine, University of Toronto Merit Award. Dr. Cherney’s research program focuses on physiological factors that initiate renal disease in patients with diabetes, such as renal hyperfiltration and inflammation, and the role of the cardiorenal axis in diabetes. His research group is also involved in early and late phase clinical trials in the cardiorenal-metabolic field, including several primary renal outcome trials in patients with and without diabetes. Dr. Cherney’s research program is closely aligned with his integrated and multidisciplinary cardiac-renal-endocrine clinic at the University Health Network, which maintains a strong emphasis on the prevention of diabetic nephropathy and cardiovascular disease. In 2019, he received the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) Distinguished Researcher Award for outstanding contributions to nephrology. In 2019 he also received the Diabetes Canada/CIHR – Institute of Nutrition Diabetes and Metabolism (INMD) Young Scientist Award.
Jean-Marc has been officially retired since 2011 from the health network. In 1971, at the age of 19 years, he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and has lived with this reality for 50 years this year. This change in health led Jean-Marc to change his professional orientation since he was in the armed forces at the time. He resumed his full-time studies and became a specialized educator in 1975. He worked in the health network for a few years and in 1979 became involved in visual impairment rehabilitation services for a new clientele. While working full time, he continued his training in the USA by becoming a visual impairment rehabilitation worker. In 1985, he made the leap into management by obtaining a position of administrator with the teams of specialists. While working full-time, he engaged part-time in management training and obtained his bachelor’s degree from the Université de Montréal in 1995. In 2000, he obtained his 2nd Cycle diploma in Management and Development from the Université Laval.
In the 1980s Jean-Marc became involved with the Quebec local diabetes chapter as a member initially and later as President. He became a member of the provincial board of directors of the Diabetes Association and served as Vice-President for a time. The development of local sections was one of its priority objectives in order to support all people with diabetes in Quebec. Throughout these 50 years of life as a person living with diabetes, Jean-Marc has participated in various research projects with researchers from the hospital environment where he is followed in endocrinology. For the past five years, he has been a citizen representative on an ethics committee for population health research and front-line services. He is also a patient partner with Diabetes Action Canada and has been a member of the collective patient circle since the beginning and is also involved in research projects.
Jean-Marc remains active by maintaining a good rhythm of daily physical activities while aiming for the best possible control of his condition. Now it is easier with the use of the insulin pump as a new technology. For him, research is essential and, as a patient partner, we must share our knowledge and our experience among ourselves and with research teams. For Jean-Marc, living healthy with diabetes is a daily challenge that must be met continuously because he wants to live as long as possible.
Karen Cross MD, Ph.D., FRCSC is a Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeon and a Surgeon Scientist at St. Michael’s Hospital. She is an Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto and an Adjunct Professor at Ryerson University. She is also the Co-Founder and CEO of a startup health technology company called MIMOSA Diagnostics. She performs basic science and clinical translation research developing non-invasive optical technologies to assess skin physiology. Her research aims are to bring innovative technology from the bench to the bedside.
Dr. Cruess’ main research interest is in clinical trials of new therapies for age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and retinal vascular occlusion. Dr. Cruess has recently been appointed as a principal investigator of the Diabetic Retinopathy Clinical Research Network (DRCR.net), a National Eye Institute U.S.-sponsored network to conduct clinical trials in diabetic retinopathy. Dr. Cruess is a member of the Canadian Medical Association, the Canadian Ophthalmological Society, the Macula Society, the Retina Society, and Club Jules Gonin. He is also a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
Kaberi Dasgupta’s studies focus on the prevention and management of diabetes and its related complications. In collaboration with her multidisciplinary team, including patient partners, she develops and tests strategies to enhance self-management support. She has over 120 peer-reviewed publications and has received research grants as principal investigator from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada, the Lawson Foundation, the Medavie Foundation, and Diabetes Canada. She was a recipient of a CIHR New Investigator award and has been an FRQS clinician scholar from the junior through senior levels.
Charles goal is to pursue population-based health services research focusing on patients with diabetes who undergo lower limb amputation. He is interested in better characterizing the epidemiology, outcomes, health-resource use and costs of lower limb amputation in diabetic patients as well as limb preservation therapies. The purpose of this work is to inform population-level interventions to reduce diabetes-related foot complications.
Pascual worked as a community development organizer and human rights advocate in Montreal from 1970 until his retirement in 2014. He worked and volunteered with an organization that strived to improve healthcare services for members of ethno cultural communities residing in Quebec. In 2004, he was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes but believes his condition had gone undiagnosed prior to this. He stresses the importance of interdisciplinary, holistic and culturally sensitive approaches for education, training, assessment, diagnosis and treatment of patients in the healthcare system – particularly when working with newcomers. Immigrating into a new country is often traumatic, meaning culturally sensitive care and accommodation of diversity should be a priority to reduce barriers to accessing care and treatment. He promotes the importance of self-esteem and training the mind and the spirit to harmonize with all organs of the body. He believes that faith and will power can have healing powers even with chronic conditions like diabetes.
Sasha is a wife and mother of four who is passionate about Type 1 Diabetes advocacy because of her son, Brayson (age 9), who has been living with the condition since the age of 2. She became a patient partner with Diabetes Action Canada in September 2017 and serves as a member of Diabetes Action Canada’s Collective Patient Circle, Indigenous Patient Circle, and Steering Council. She also advocates through Diabetes Canada and JDRF, as well as social media platforms, sharing her family’s Type 1 journey. She has presented at numerous conferences, including the Annual Diabetes Canada Conference in 2019, Society for Medical Decision Making Annual Symposium speaking on “Medical Decision Making Across the Lifespan”, and a Live Well with Diabetes Event. Her family plans support group meetings, parade floats to spread awareness for the Type 1 Community in her city, and other fundraising events. She hopes to help bridge the gap between the research world and lived-experience by sharing her story and first hand knowledge of the condition.
Over the last 30 years, Dr. Després and his team have studied obesity and adiposity and how they relate to health outcomes, with a strong focus on risk factors for cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Through series of cardiometabolic imaging studies, his group has shown that visceral/ectopic fat depots are key drivers of complications that had, in the past, been associated with excess body fat. The team has also documented how excess visceral adiposity/ectopic fat is associated with a constellation of atherogenic and diabetogenic abnormalities often referred to as the metabolic syndrome. The group is also active in the study of etiologic factors responsible for the selective accumulation of visceral/ectopic fat and is currently focussing on the contribution of nutritional and other lifestyle factors including physical activity/exercise. Finally, the team is heavily involved in the development of simple tools to assess and target lifestyle risk factors in clinical practice.
Dr Sophie Desroches, PhD, RD, is Professor at Université Laval School of Nutrition, in Quebec City, Canada. She is also a research scientist at the Centre Nutrition, santé et société (NUTRISS) at the Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods of Laval University. Her research program aims to identify, develop and evaluate knowledge translation strategies that will optimize adherence to dietary advice for preventing and managing chronic diseases. Her more recently funded research projects have explored the use of social media, and more specifically blogs, as knowledge translation strategies to enhance adherence to evidence-based dietary advice for preventing and managing chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes.
Dr. Joyce Dogba is trained as a physician in Togo. She holds a Master degree in health economics and a PhD in Public Health. She is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Family and Emergency Medicine at Laval University. Her research agenda comprises evaluation of collaborative practices with patients-users in research and the education of health professionals. She is also interested in advancing stakeholders engagement science regarding how to meaningfully involve the underserved including immigrants in patient-oriented research. Joyce Dogba is a co-lead on patient engagement within the SRAP/SPOR Network in Diabetes and Related Complications.
Neil is an epidemiologist and has been leading primary care research initiatives since arriving in Canada in 1999. Neil founded the North Toronto Primary Care Research Network (NorTReN) in 1999 and Southern Alberta Primary Care Research Network in 2004. Both are multidisciplinary, community-based networks designed to engage primary care practitioners in research in order to answer questions deriving from primary care clinical practice. SAPCReN is the host network in southern Alberta for the Canadian Primary Care Sentinel Surveillance Network (CPCSSN), for which He is a co-principal investigator. CPCSSN uploads anonymous clinical data from the electronic medical records of participating sentinel family physicians across Canada and processes it for the purposes of public health surveillance, health services research and quality improvement projects, as well as for direct sentinel reporting. Neil led the pan¬-Canadian Dementia NET research group in the study of care for people with dementia in community settings. He is also a science lead for the Alberta CIHR/AIHS SPOR Primary and Integrated Health Care Innovation Network. He is a Professor and holds the AHS Chair in Primary Care Research in the Dept of Family Medicine at the University of Alberta
Arnaud Duhoux worked 6 years as a Registered Nurse, mainly with the homeless population. He is trained in epidemiology and public health and is an expert in quantitative analysis of administrative health data to measure performance in primary care. He is also the director of the strategic grouping on population mental health of the Quebec Population Health Research Network.
Specializing in the field of palliative care, Dr. Dumont’s work is part of the movement towards humanized palliative care, where he directed one of the first major cohort studies on psychological distress experienced by the loved ones accompanying an end-of-life patient. His research is focused specifically on continuity of care, the economic burden, ethics, the experience of families caring for end-of-life loved ones and social policy analysis.
Dr. El-Defrawy is Nanji Family Chair in Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, Professor and Chair of the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences at the University of Toronto and the Ophthalmologist-in-Chief at Kensington Eye Institute. He is a Past President of the Canadian Ophthalmological Society and the Association of Canadian University Professors of Ophthalmology, and most recently was co-Chair of the Eye Health Council of Ontario. He was the Chair of the Department of Ophthalmology at Queen’s University, and Ophthalmologist-in-Chief at the University Hospitals in Kingston, Ontario from 2004 to 2012.
Howard is a Patient Partner for the Training and Mentoring Program and a member of the Collective Patient Circle. Howard is retired from the Canadian Military. He is from Winnipeg and has lived with T2D since 2008. He had pre-diabetes for 15 years prior to that. Since retiring, he has been involved in supporting diabetes care and research, including as a subject in two drug research projects, a Board Member of the Youville Clinic Centre of Diabetic Excellence in Manitoba, and a member of one of six Local Health Involvement Groups under the auspices of the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. He took part in the Foundational Training Seminar in Ottawa for Patient-Oriented Research volunteers and is enthusiastically providing input for improved care for Canadians living with diabetes.
Pr Jean-François Ethier is a clinician-scientist and associate professor in the Department of Medicine of the Université de Sherbrooke and the Sherbrooke University Health Center. He is also the co-director of the Groupe de recherche interdisciplinaire en informatique de la santé (GRIIS.ca). He has extensive collaborations in Europe and is an associate researcher at the INSERM UMRS 1138 in Paris. He received his medical training from McGill University where he graduated MD CM in 2006 and completed his residency in internal medicine in 2011. He subsequently completed a Master STS (public health) and a PhD in health informatics in Paris at Paris IV (Université Pierre-Marie Curie). His research duties include the direction of the Data Access Group of the Quebec SPOR Support Unit and of the leadership of PARS3 integration in the National Health Data Platform funded by CIHR.
His research focuses on methods to support learning health systems (LHS) by putting the patient at the center of platforms to support integrated research, knowledge transfer and care delivery. More specifically, his projects target semantic interoperability between health and research infrastructures, temporal data operations to support complex health data queries as well as formal models (ontologies) to link care, research and connected personal devices (quantified self).
Dr. Etminan’s area of research is focused on drug safety. She uses large population-based databases from Canada and the United States as well as epidemiologic methods to quantify adverse drug reactions in the area of ophthalmology as well as other therapeutic areas. She is also interested in causal inference methods and its application in epidemiological research. Recently, Dr. Etminan co-authored a paper looking at the risk of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor inhibitors, a new class of antidiabetic medications, and risk of diabetic retinopathy. In 2019 she plans to study health outcomes related to diabetic retinopathy in British Columbia.
Dr. Farkouh is internationally known for his work in cardiovascular prevention and acute coronary syndromes. He has a special interest and expertise in the field of cardiovascular disease in diabetic patients. He is currently the project officer for numerous clinical trials on questions related to diabetes and heart disease including the NIH-sponsored FREEDOM trial. He chairs the committee on diabetes and heart disease at the Banting and Best Diabetes Centre at the University of Toronto and serves as Associate Editor of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Our group investigates the link between diabetes and heart diseases with a particular emphasis on large, multinational outcomes trials in patients with coronary heart disease and heart failure.
Kate Farnsworth is the patient partner co-lead for the Innovations in Type-1 Diabetes Program. Kate has been heavily involved in the Do-It-Yourself #wearenotwaiting movement since her daughter Sydney was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 8. With a background in information technology and graphic design, Kate has lent her skillset to developing diabetes watch faces for remote monitoring used by patients worldwide. Kate has created an online patient-driven support community for people who are exploring DIY closed-loop solutions and continues to advocate for all people with diabetes to have access to the best tools to manage their diabetes.
Robert is the Aboriginal Diabetes Education Coordinator for the Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA). Robert is Anishnaabe from Animakee Wa Zhing No. #37 First Nation, Treaty 3 and is the Eagle Staff Keeper for ONWA’s Grandmother Eagle Staff. He graduated from Confederation College and Lakehead University with BA in both Sociology and Indigenous Learning. Robert is passionate about his work in diabetes and dedicates his work to the memory of his Grandmother. Diabetes has ravaged his family for three generations, and now the next generations are here. Robert is very involved with his community as the Chair for the Northwestern Ontario Regional Stroke Network’s Aboriginal Advisory Committee. He is a current member of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre’s Advisory Committee for Aboriginal Lead Engagement and the TBRHSC Patient/Family Advisor Council. Robert also volunteers for the Hospice Northwest Palliative Care Program and serves as an Elder for the Indigenous Peoples Court, Thunder Bay Consolidated Courthouse. Robert is a firm believer that the work he is doing will benefit his children, grandchildren, and the next generations.
There is no FDA-approved treatment for diabetic neuropathy, a condition that afflicts half of the 27 million North Americans who suffer from diabetes. The neurodegeneration seen in diabetes leads to sensory fiber depletion and loss of protective sensation – a primary trigger of the diabetic foot and lower limb amputation. With financial support from several key stakeholders in the field of diabetes, a small start-up company, WinSanTor Inc, was established in 2012 and is developing a proprietary first-in-class therapy to prevent and reverse nerve damage. The SPOR network is performing phase 2 clinical trials with novel topical therapeutics provided by WinSanTor. In the USA the FDA is currently assessing this therapeutic approach for classification as an investigational new drug (IND).
Dr. Thomas L. Forbes is currently the R. Fraser Elliott Chair and Division Head of Vascular Surgery at University Health Network (since 2018) and Professor of Surgery and Chair of the Division of Vascular Surgery at the University of Toronto (since 2014). He obtained his medical degree in 1990 from the University of Toronto and completed his general surgery and vascular surgery training at the University of Western Ontario where he began his surgical career from 1998 to 2014. Along with his other responsibilities he is the Program Director of the Advanced Aortic Surgery Fellowship at the University of Toronto, a joint fellowship between vascular and cardiac surgery in open and endovascular therapies for thoracoabdominal aortic pathologies. Prior to his current appointment he was Chair/Chief of the Division of Vascular Surgery at the University of Western Ontario (2005-2014) and the inaugural Graduate Program Chair of the Masters of Science in Surgery program. He has published over 225 peer reviewed papers, editorials and book chapters and given over 100 invited lectures or guest professorships. His academic interests include clinical outcomes research as well as combining engineering principles with complex surgery with colleagues at CAVE (Centre for Applied Vascular Engineering). He is currently an Associate Editor of the Journal of Vascular Surgery and a member of several editorial boards, as well as being Section Editor of Rutherford’s Textbook of Vascular Surgery. Dr. Forbes is Co-Chair of the Clinical Advisory Committee of CorHealth Ontario which works to enhance cardiac, stroke and vascular care in the province of Ontario. Dr. Forbes is a Distinguished Fellow of the Society for Vascular Surgery and a Fellow of the American Surgical Association. He is also Past-President of the Canadian Society for Vascular Surgery, a former Residency Program Director and former vice-Chair of the Vascular Surgery Specialty Committee of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.
Michael’s main research interest is in understanding the safety and effectiveness of sodium glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors by applying pharmacoepidemiology methods and machine learning. He primarily uses data collected from routine care (e.g., ICES, insurance claims data) and his main areas of methodologic expertise are in propensity score matching and supervised machine learning (e.g., gradient boosted trees). Michael splits his research time between GEMINI and LKS-CHART and plans to integrate pharmacoepidemiology with Machine Learning to understand the safety and effectiveness of medications for adults with diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Rebecca first joined the School of Nursing at McMaster in 2006 as a part-time faculty member and became a full-time Assistant Professor in 2017. She teaches in both the undergraduate and graduate programs. She is Co-Scientific Director of the Aging, Community and Health Research Unit, the Acting Lead of the McMaster Collaborative for Health and Aging (OSSU Research Centre of Aging), and the Lead of the Primary Health Care – Patient Expertise in Research Collaboration (part of the Innovations Strengthening Primary Health Care through Research network). Dr. Ganann is also a researcher with the McMaster Institute for Research on Aging. Dr. Ganann’s research program is focused on integrated health and social service delivery innovations to promote physical and mental health, and mobility among community-dwelling older adults. Her previous research has explored mental health and health services accessibility for immigrant women.
André is a Patient Partner co-facilitator for the Training and Mentoring Program. André is a writer, speaker and active advocate living with T2D in Sherbrooke, QC. He is an accomplished author, with his second book, “Le diabète: Un nouveau mode de vie à découvrir” written and published in 2009 in collaboration with people living with diabetes from France and Belgium. With this book, André hopes to fill the void that arises after the announcement of the diagnosis, to help people better understand diabetes and its complications, as well as, to empower people living with diabetes to live a full and fulfilling life. You can access André’s book by clicking here.
André has also established a website in order to inform people living with diabetes about research and to support those newly diagnosed in learning about lifestyles and diabetes management. He is actively involved in a variety of patient participation and diabetes research projects, such as Liaison Officer for the board of French language SRAP (SPOR) patients, patient partner for the Centre for Diabetes, Obesity and Cardiovascular Complications of the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Sherbrooke, patient-partner of Réseau -1 Québec, patient partner for ComPaRe research in France on diabetes, and life coach with the Kidney League in France for people who are on dialysis. André wishes to use his experience to help guide researchers in understanding the realities of living with diabetes every day. He also hopes to contribute to improving the quality of life for all people living with diabetes
Hannah Geddie is a Pediatric Endocrinologist at McMaster Children’s Hospital. She completed her medical degree, residency training, and fellowship training in Pediatric Endocrinology at McMaster University. She has a Masters degree in Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She has a strong interest in the intersection between public health and health promotion and Type 1 Diabetes. Her current research pertains to health policy related to Type 1 Diabetes in school, and the use of interactive tools to support patients and families in managing Type 1 Diabetes.
Julie completed her medical degree in 2010 at the University of Birmingham, UK, followed by her internal medicine residency at Queen’s University and endocrinology residency at the University of Toronto. In 2016, she received a Master’s of Science in Healthcare Quality from Queen’s University. Julie joined the Department of Endocrinology at St. Michael’s Hospital in 2017 as a clinician in quality and innovation.
Julie has been involved in a project aimed at creating and implementing a Diabetes Balanced Scorecard and is currently working on an initiative intended to improve the rate of CFRD screening at St. Michael’s Hospital. Julie is a member of the insulin oversight committee at St. Michael’s Hospital and the Banting & Best Diabetes Centre QUEST Committee.
Shivani is currently leading a digital strategy for the commercialization of chronic disease management mobile technologies. She has extensive experience in the design and development of evidence-based behavioural digital platforms, as well as in evaluation methods, ranging from traditional (i.e. RCTs) to more nimble real-time analytics approaches.
Driven by the overwhelming prevalence of chronic illness and the need to revolutionize the traditional models for health care delivery, Shivani is exploring how consumer-focused approaches can enable patients to drive their own care. This involves expanding health care beyond hospital and clinics and evolving traditional consumer markets (e.g. Pharmacies), communities, even our own homes, to be facilitators of improved health.
Through public-private partnerships, Shivani’s goal is to move eHealth research from the bench to the hands of patients, through the co-development of innovative, robust and scalable models of health care delivery.
Shivani holds a PhD in Biomedical Engineering, from the University of Toronto. Her thesis was focused on the design and evaluation of a behavioural mobile application for the self-management of diabetes. She also holds a Masters in Biomedical Engineering from Université de Montréal, and a Bachelors of Mechanical Engineering from Concordia, with a specializing in aerospace engineering
I am a semi-retired business man living on a farm north of Toronto who has lived with Type 2 diabetes for approximately 15-years. I have been involved with Gary Lewis for 13-years supporting the Banting Best Research Centre in Toronto. I wanted to support research that would make a difference in the lives of people living with this condition and Gary invited me to get involved. What keeps me involved is seeing the dedication of researchers like Gary and so many others across Canada that give their all for very little financial reward and Patient Partners who contribute meaningfully by helping researchers focus on their specific issues and needs.
I have been a Patient Partner at Diabetes Action Canada since its inception and serve on the Steering Council Executive. I also serve as Chair of the Finance-Audit Standing Committee and Co-Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee.
I am also very involved with Rotary International and have been a member of the Rotary Club of Bolton, in the hills of Caledon, for 30 years helping people locally and throughout the world. While COVID-19 has made our work more challenging, we have successfully delivered more than 20,000 medical masks to Seniors, Seniors Facilities and not-for-profit organizations and donated hundreds of $100.00 grocery gift certificates to families in need locally.
Dana Greenberg was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) in 1972, at the age of 7. She was a professional fundraiser for over 20 years and is the proud mom of 3 kids, aged 28, 26 and 20. Twelve years ago, her youngest daughter Marley was also diagnosed with T1D at the age of 8. After Marley’s diagnosis, Dana quickly came to realize that she was in a unique position to help others because she understood both what it means to be a person living with T1D and what it means to be a parent of a child with T1D.
Dana is an active volunteer with many diabetes organizations in Toronto, where she chairs various committees, does speaking engagements, and has mentored dozens of families living with T1D. Dana has been involved with Diabetes Action Canada as a patient partner since 2017. Dana is a member of the Collective Patient Circle, is a patient partner on several research projects, and co-leads the project: Answering Questions that Matter to Persons Living with Diabetes Using the National Diabetes Repository.
Dr Greiver’s work centers on using Canada’s increasingly large amounts of electronic health data to improve the health and lives of Canadians; diabetes is now a critical health issue for more Canadians than ever. She oversees the Electronic Medical Record data system as well as clinical research activities for UTOPIAN, the University of Toronto Practice-Based Research Network (PBRN), which includes over 1,400 family physicians and is the largest PBRN in Canada. UTOPIAN partners front line providers and academic researchers, providing insights into what is working and what could work better in primary care.
She has worked with the leadership of Diabetes Action Canada on a National Diabetes Repository, launched in 2018. The Repository includes Electronic Medical Record data on over 120,000 patients from five provinces, and an age and sex matched set of 120,000 patient without diabetes. It has been designed to accept and combine multiple sources of data, including information added by patients living with diabetes on their health and wellbeing. It is intended to offer patients new ways to access and use their data and enhanced options to engage and participate in care and research positioned to be meaningful and relevant to them.
The Quebec SPOR Support Unit announced on May 7, 2020 the appointment of Mr. Antoine Groulx, full clinical professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Emergency Medicine at Laval University, as the next designated scientific director. Over the next year, Professor Groulx, also a family doctor in the University Family Medicine Group (GMF-U) in Maizerets, will assume various responsibilities and support the current Scientific Director of the Unit, Dr Alain Vanasse. He will thus take the reins of the position of Scientific Director of the Unit in 2021.
Dr. Grunfeld is a physician-scientist and Director of the Knowledge Translation Research Network, Health Services Research Program, at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. At the University of Toronto, Dr. Grunfeld holds the post of Giblon Professor and Vice-Chair (Research) at the Department of Family and Community Medicine; professor at the Institute for Health Policy, Management and Evaluation; and professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. She also holds the position of Chair of the Institute for Cancer Research, Institute Advisory Board, at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Dr. Grunfeld is a leader in cancer health services and outcomes research. Her research focuses on evaluation and knowledge translation of cancer health services, covering the entire spectrum of cancer control activities. She is internationally recognized for research on cancer survivorship, integration of care, and on cancer outcomes.Dr. Grunfeld uses a mixed-methods approach including randomized controlled trials (RCTs), qualitative research and outcomes research. Knowledge translation is an integral part of all her research activities. She has conducted several multi-centre RCTs on cancer survivorship which have influenced clinical practice guidelines and policies internationally.Dr. Grunfeld holds many peer-review grants as Principal Investigator and has served on many committees to further the goals of cancer control in Canada and internationally. She obtained her medical degree from McMaster University and doctoral degree in cancer epidemiology from Oxford University.
Dr. Neeru Gupta is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, and the Diabetes Canada–New Brunswick Health Research Foundation Chair in Diabetes Research at the University of New Brunswick. Her research focuses on the use of large-scale survey and administrative datasets to support evidence-informed health and social policy to positively impact diabetes outcomes across the lifespan amenable to healthcare improvement, notably as leading to healthy populations, sustainable health system investments, and better patient and provider experiences.
Dr. Haidar is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Medicine, McGill University. Dr. Haidar leads an interdisciplinary research program that applies feedback control theory and mathematical modelling to diabetes physiological and clinical problems. Since 2011, Dr Haidar’s research focus has been to develop and clinically test novel artificial pancreas systems, as well as using Bayesian modeling and isotope tracers to study the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of insulin, glucagon, and pramlintide. Dr Haidar also leads a graduate program in translational biomedical engineering at McGill University that trains engineers for careers in the biomedical industry.
The focus of Dr. Halperin’s research is on quality improvement related to chronic disease management. She has a special clinical and research interest in diabetes in pregnancy and is currently collaborating on a number of multi-site projects for this population looking at timing of post-partum screening for diabetes and behavioural interventions to decrease diabetes risk post-partum. She is also leading the development and implementation of a balanced diabetes scorecard to evaluate and improve the quality of specialty ambulatory care for patients with diabetes.
Allison comes to Diabetes Action Canada following a 27-year career in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto where she functioned as a senior administrator in the Clinical Sector and supported several Decanal portfolios. Concurrent with her role at the University, Allison supported the operations of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. Allison functions well in multi-stakeholder administrative environments and will provide high level support to the Network.
Within Diabetes Action Canada, Dr. Harvey acts as a co-investigator for the sex and gender goal group.
Dr. Harvey’s research focus is on cardiovascular disease in women, with special interest in hypertension, cardiac autonomic disorders, cardiac rehabilitation and cardiovascular disease in patients with autoimmune and rheumatologic diseases. Dr. Harvey’s research explores how blood pressure and the health of blood vessels are regulated by the body – and how this system of regulation may differ between women and men. She is also interested in the role of inflammation in autoimmune diseases in the development of cardiovascular disease.
I joined DAC in 2017 and have been a member of the Collective Patient Circle since. This organization provided me with an opportunity to get involved with and influence important research, while also offering a young person’s perspective on living with diabetes. I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when I was 7 years old, just 6 years after my oldest brother received the same diagnosis. I grew up learning that diabetes did not limit me and consequently, dedicated much of my life to competitive sports. I am a recent graduate from the University of Prince Edward Island, completing my undergraduate degree in Psychology and Biology. I hope to continue my education and pursue a career in healthcare. Ultimately, I’d like to help others, as I have been helped, to overcome obstacles in their life and achieve their goals. I am a firm believer that everyone deserves the opportunity to pursue their dreams, no matter their circumstance.
Senior health sector leader focused on the use of analytics, evidence and innovation to improve policies, programs, and quality.
Strong academic background combined with 10+ years of progressively senior management positions.
Broad experience across multiple sectors and organizations including government, NGOs, pharmaceutical industry, hospitals, and academia.
Heather is an exercise enthusiast from Calgary, who has been living with type 1 diabetes for over 30 years. She holds an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology, and recently finished her M.Sc. in Kinesiology, Sport, and Recreation from the University of Alberta. Her graduate work focused on people with type 1 diabetes and how exercise may affect their blood glucose. Heather has been involved with Diabetes Canada’s D-Camps off and on for several years, providing support for the medical team at their specific request. Her passion for movement often has her dancing, skipping, cycling, or lifting. She is currently aspiring to find her next scholastic adventure, whether it be in research or medicine.
Professor Huang has an impressive research record with publications that involve a surprisingly broad cross-section of applied mathematics including partial differential equations, asymptotics, fluid mechanics, probability, stochastic processes, and scientific computing. His work impacts a broad sphere of influence to the study of applications ranging from industrial sectors such as banking, insurance, biomedicine, energy, and material science.
Bernard R. Hurley, BSc, MD, FRCSC is an Assistant Professor at The University of Ottawa Eye Institute where he is also the residency program director and the fellowship program director. He has received awards for top clinical instruction in the department in 2016, 2013 and 2011. He completed his post-graduate medical education with a Retina Fellowship at the Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia where he was twice awarded the Outstanding Fellow Award. He has written several chapters and has been the author or co-author of many peer-reviewed publications on topics including diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration. He has received research support from the E.A. Baker Foundation.
Noah Ivers (MD, PhD) is a scientist at WCRI and adjunct scientist at ICES. He is also a family physician at Women’s College Hospital (WCH) and an Associate Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine and at the Institute for Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto.
Noah’s research focuses on the use of data to drive decision making in healthcare, applying behavioural sciences and drawing on a foundation in clinical epidemiology and health services research. He has previously received a Rising Star award from CIHR as well as a New Investigator Awards from CIHR and a Clinician Scientist award from the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto.
Dr. Jaakkimainen’s research interests include examining primary health care access, continuity of care, primary health care indicators and benchmarks, measuring wait times from primary to specialist care, improving the coordination of care in primary care, caring for marginalized and frail seniors in the community, and performance feedback to primary care providers. In 2006, Dr. Jaakkimainen co-lead the “Primary Care in Ontario: An ICES Atlas”. In 2014, Dr. Jaakkimainen published a study using family physician Electronic Medical Record Administrative data Linked Database (EMRALD) measuring the time between a family physician’s referral and the appointment with a specialist.
Dr. Caroline Jose is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the Université de Sherbrooke and Research Associate for the Maritime Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) SUPPORT Unit in Moncton since 2015. By collaborating with patients, researchers, clinicians, and policy makers from New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Nova Scotia, her current research seeks to integrate the lived experience of patients into research to facilitate the knowledge transfer into care. She provides patient-oriented research support services and leads a patient-oriented research program on adults with neurodevelopmental disabilities through the Maritimes. Caroline is a member of the International Aging & Autism Think Tank group developed by Autism Canada, Autism Research Institute (US) and The Pacific Autism Family Network
(Canada), and supports autistics-led community initiatives in Atlantic Canada.
Peter Jüni is a clinical epidemiologist and general internist and the Director of the Applied Health Research Centre (AHRC) at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital. He holds a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Clinical Epidemiology of Chronic Diseases and is a Professor at the Department of Medicine and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto. Peter is known for his methodological work and for his clinical research on the management of cardiovascular and musculoskeletal disorders. He has published over 350 papers, which were cited more than 60,000 times and has been recognized as highly cited researcher since 2015.
Monika Kastner is the Research Chair in Knowledge Translation (KT) and Implementation at North York General Hospital, an Affiliate Scientist with the KT Program at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital, and Associate Professor in the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation (IHPME) as well as through the Department of Family and Community Medicine (DFCM) at the University of Toronto. Monika’s research interests and goals are to make a positive impact on the health of vulnerable older adults with the use of innovative eHealth technologies and to advance the science and practice of KT and health services research.
Dr. Kayssi is a clinical trialist with an interest in vascular surgery and wound care interventions that promote limb preservation and prevent amputation. His other interests are developing capacity and improving health care services among First Nations.
Calvin is an endocrinologist, clinical epidemiologist, and clinician scientist recruitment candidate at the University Health Network and University of Toronto. He received his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Toronto. He completed his residency training in Internal Medicine at the University of British Columbia and Endocrinology and Metabolism at the University of Toronto. He completed his PhD in clinical epidemiology and global health at the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto. He has conducted diabetes research locally in Canada and globally in India, China, and Guyana. His current research interests include the management and outcomes of type 2 diabetes, with a special focus on young-onset type 2 diabetes. Dr. Ke is a member of the International Diabetes Federation Atlas Committee and recently served as an Honorary Visiting Scholar at The Chinese University of Hong Kong (2019). He has authored over a dozen peer-reviewed research articles in high-impact journals such as Annals of Internal Medicine, The Lancet Global Health, and PLoS Medicine. He is a University of Toronto Global Scholar, Queen Elizabeth Advanced Scholar (2021), and recipient of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada Detweiler Traveling Fellowship Award (2017), the Canadian Society of Endocrinology and Metabolism Dr. Fernand Labrie Fellowship Research Award (2018), the Queen Elizabeth Advanced Scholars Award (2021), the Comparative Health Systems Award in Honour of Les Boehm (2020), and the South Asian Network Supporting Awareness and Research Burgundy Young Investigator Award (2018).
Tara Kiran is the Fidani Chair in Improvement and Innovation and Vice-Chair Quality and Innovation at the Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of Toronto. Much of her research has focused on evaluating the impact of Ontario’s primary care reforms on quality of care. She has also developed a passion for quality improvement research including initiatives to improve cancer screening rates, measure and reduce care disparities, and support physicians to learn from data. She practices family medicine at the St. Michael’s Hospital Academic Family Health Team where she led the quality improvement program from 2011 to 2018. She is a Scientist in the MAP Centre for Urban Health Solutions at St. Michael’s Hospital and an Adjunct Scientist at ICES. She is also currently an Embedded Clinician Researcher with Health Quality Ontario where she leads a program of research to improve the experience of care for patients transitioning from hospital to home.
Dr. Kosar is a Sudbury Ontario ophthalmologist specializing in Retinal Diseases. He is past Chief of Ophthalmology at Health Sciences North. He is a Director on the Board of the Ontario Medical Association (OMA). Dr. Kosar worked as a Family Doctor in Northern Ontario from 1982 to 1986.
Dr. Kosar is a Past President of the Sudbury & District Medical Society. He is the Past Chair of OMA District 9 (Northeastern Ontario). He has been OMA Section Chair for Ophthalmology and has served many years on OMA Council. The CNIB Eye Van program has Dr. Kosar as its Assistant Medical Director. He serves as Chairman of the Board for Science North in Sudbury. Dr. Kosar is an Assistant Professor, Department of Surgery, Northern Ontario School of Medicine.
Dr. Kosar continues to carry on a busy practice in Sudbury while participating in various telemedicine projects involving remote screening for Diabetic Retinopathy.
Ms. Laberge is interested in the economic analysis and evaluation of health policies and services, and in particular the transformations that can improve the quality, efficiency and equity of services. His research interests include health systems performance, resource allocation and distribution, and population health outcomes. She has particular expertise in primary care and the organization and payment models of physicians and service providers.
Ms. Laberge applies economic theories and econometrics tools to assess the impact of health interventions, whether at the health policy level or at the health facility level. Although she has worked mainly on secondary data (administrative databases and population surveys), her more recent work also includes primary data (collection from patients).
Dr. Benoît Lamarche is Full Professor at the School of Nutrition and Chair of Nutrition at Laval University. He has published more than 320 peer-reviewed papers in areas related to diet and its impact on metabolic syndrome, obesity, inflammation and dyslipidemia. He has contributed the training of more than 60 MSc, PhD students and postdocs. He has received numerous awards, including awards from the Société Québécoise de lipidologie, nutrition et métabolisme (Prix des Fondateurs, 2013), the Canadian Nutrition Society (Centrum New Investigator Award, 2011), the Utrech Group and the International Dairy Federation (Wiebe Visser Bi-annual International Nutrition Award, 2004). Benoît Lamarche is an Olympian (1984,1988) in long track speed skating.
Krista Lamb is the Communications Lead for Diabetes Action Canada. She is a writer, communications professional and podcast host. Krista specializes in helping translate complex medical, scientific and health-related topics into interesting and understandable stories for diverse mediums. In addition, Krista is the producer and host of multiple podcasts, including the Actions on Diabetes Podcast with Diabetes Action Canada. Her first book, Beyond Banting: From insulin to islet transplants, decoding Canada’s diabetes research superstars, is available now from Rock’s Mills Press.
Carlos joins Diabetes Action Canada after working as an Administrative Assistant with the Toronto General Research Hospital Institute at UHN. He brings years of experience from his role as a client success specialist and project manager in the start-up community where he managed client portfolios, developed business relationships, and created operational processes. He holds a Bachelor’s degree with a double major in Chemistry and Biology with a minor in French Studies from the University of Toronto. While at university, he joined many student organizations in senior leadership positions including LSAS, MoveU, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and NAMUN. Coupled with his experience in the start-up sector, Carlos brings years of experience in time management, team work, organization, and interpersonal skills to the team.
Dr. Barry Lavallee is a member of Manitoba First Nation and Métis communities, and is a University of Manitoba trained family physician specializing in Indigenous health and northern practice. His clinical work has focused on the health and healing needs of First Nation and Métis communities. He has a Masters of Clinical Sciences from the University of Western Ontario. His research and clinical areas are chronic diseases, transgenerational trauma, impact of colonization on Indigenous communities and international Indigenous health.
Anita’s research focuses on the development and application of mathematical models to gain insights into the physiology and pathophysiology of the mammalian kidneys. In particular, she is interested in understanding the cardiovascular benefits of novel antiglyceamic therapies in diabetes and chronic kidney diseases, and in unraveling the mechanisms underlying the sex differences in blood pressure regulation. She is the Deputy Editor of the American Journal of Physiolog–Renal Physiology, an Associate Editor of SIAM Review Book Section, and an Associate Editor of SIAM Journal on Applied Dynamical Systems. Additionally, she serves as the Associate Dean, Research and International, for the Faculty of Mathematics, and chairs the Research Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Council at the University of Waterloo.
With professors Carmen Bernier and Lyne Bouchard, she carried out research (2014-2017) on the realities of women in the new information and communications technology industry, in partnership with technoCompétence and three industry organizations. With Sophie Brière and her team, she participated in the study of the situation of women in the fields of law, finance, occupational safety, engineering and education. With Lyse Langlois and Olivier Charpateau (Paris Dauphine), she participated in a research project on the ethical sensitivity of members of boards of directors, its activation and the resulting actions during difficult decisions. Between 2009 and 2014, she conducted studies on a) women entrepreneurs (immigrants and natives) in the Quebec City region; b) organizational practices that support women’s access to management positions in large organizations; and c) the quality of the response to the needs of rural women aged 35 and over who are returning to the labor market, as presented by professional reintegration programs. She also participated in a research team looking at the conditions for successful integration of work-family balance measures in SMEs, and in the committee that designed the Work-Family Balance Standard (BNQ 9700-820).
The research program is to contribute to sustaining health and well-being in society by supporting high-quality diabetes care. It will focus on scaling up shared decision making by applying it to decision contexts and on building shared decision making capacity among health professionals. More specifically, it will provide diabetes patients and their health professionals with the necessary skills to promote shared decision-making throughout the healthcare continuum. This research is expected to harmonize patients’ expectations with respect to professional practices within the Canadian healthcare system using the best knowledge and evidence available to improve patients’ outcomes while ensuring their safety.
The Lewis lab has had a long interest in the mechanisms of various aspects of diabetic dyslipidemia, including postprandial lipemia, HDL lowering and hypertriglyceridemia. We have also had a long standing interest in the mechanisms of type 2 diabetes. Previously we have performed both animal and human mechanistic studies but currently are focusing exclusively on the human. In 2002, working in close collaboration with Dr. Khosrow Adeli (U of T), we made the novel observation that the intestine, in addition to the liver, overproduces lipoproteins in insulin resistant states. In our current funded work we are determining the mechanism of intestinal and hepatic lipoprotein overproduction in insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes. We perform integrative, physiological studies in humans, attempting to determine the regulation of intestinal and hepatic lipoprotein particle production by hormones, nutrients and pharmacological agents. We have also received funding to study CNS regulation of systemic metabolism.
Mildred graduated in Economics from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia. Mildred’s current role as the Business Officer at Diabetes Action Canada is to administer the financial matters and inter-institutional agreements for the Network, as well as provide administrative support to the Steering Council and its Standing Committees. Prior to joining the team at Diabetes Action Canada, Mildred provided administrative support to the Division of Endocrinology at the University of Toronto and the Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) Collaborative. Mildred had considerable experience in coordinating the secretariat functions of the board of governors and senate, as well, the graduation ceremony of a tertiary institution in Singapore before her move to Canada.
Dr. Lipscombe is an endocrinologist and director of the Division of Endocrinology at Women’s College Hospital, as well as a scientist at the Women’s College Research Institute, a senior adjunct scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, and an Associate Professor of Medicine at University of Toronto. She completed her MD from McGill University in 1998, followed by Internal Medicine and Endocrinology training and an MSc in Clinical Epidemiology from the University of Toronto. Dr. Lipscombe’s research program focuses on the epidemiology, care and prevention of diabetes, with a specific focus on diabetes in women. She has extensive experience with the use of population-based databases to conduct diabetes research and is currently leading a large clinical trial to evaluate a diabetes prevention program for women with gestational diabetes.
Dr Lussier is a full professor in the Family Medicine and Emergency Medicine department at Université de Montréal. Until recently, she practised family medicine at the academic Family Health Team in Laval (Québec). She is the director of the RRSPUM (rrspum.umontreal.ca), the FM Department’s PBRN since 2012. Her main research interests are chronic disease management in primary care with a focus on healthcare provider-patient communication and the use of information technology. She has co-authored a number of scientific articles on this subject. She is co-editor of the only French language textbook on health communication “La communication Professionnelle en santé” (2005 and 2016) used in many health sciences faculties of French-speaking countries around the world.
Our goal is to develop a National Diabetic Retinopathy(DR) assessment program, registry, and clinical trials unit that will be accessible to all Canadians with diabetes. This program will define and implement a best practices approach for the early diagnosis and management of DR, preventing blindness and visual disability. Novel components of this program include a scalable National DR Registry, a patient-oriented research program, and an App to assist patients with managing their eye care.
Dr. MacCallum leads the development and evaluation of innovative educational programs designed to support and empower pharmacists in the care of people with diabetes. Recognizing the need for pharmacists to play a greater role in the medication management of diabetes patients, she founded the first Canadian Diabetes Pharmacists Network and is the Editor-in-Chief of the BBDC Guidebook on Diabetes Management which has been referenced by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care and is used by over 6000 health care providers across Canada. Her current research focuses on the evaluation of expanded pharmacy services including an evaluation of the MedsCheck Diabetes program in Ontario. Her research aims to identify the most substantial barriers and facilitators to follow-up of people with diabetes and to develop and evaluate strategies to improve follow-up by community pharmacists using quality improvement methods.
Dr Donna Manca’s research is focused on obtaining and using data for research and to improve care through prevention, screening and better management. She is the Director of the Northern Alberta Primary Care Research Network (NAPCReN), a network contributing data to the Canadian Primary Care Research Network (CPCSSN). Dr Manca was instrumental in the implementation of the privacy and information security system for the Canadian Primary Care Sentinel Surveillance Network which obtained the international association of privacy professionals 2013 privacy innovation award. She is working with Diabetes Action Canada on the development and launch of a secure National Diabetes Repository that will provide data from multiple sources for research, practice and patients. Good data is required to better inform patients and their health care providers.
Dr. Maureen Markle-Reid is a Professor in the School of Nursing and holds a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Person-Centred Interventions for Older Adults with Multimorbidity and their Caregivers in the School of Nursing at McMaster University. She is also the Scientific Co-Lead of the McMaster Institute for Research on Aging/Collaborative for Health and Aging, and the Co-Scientific Director of the Aging, Community and Health Research Unit. Her research program focuses on designing, implementing, evaluating, and scaling-up integrated, patient-oriented interventions to improve health outcomes and reduce health inequities in older adults with multimorbidity and their family caregivers, while reducing costs.
Robin Mason is committed to enhancing the understanding of, and commitment to, the integration of an intersectional sex and gender lens (SGBA+) in all health research. To this end, she has designed educational materials and activities to engage students, trainees, patients and other community members, as well as established researchers in considering the impact of sex, gender and other identity-related factors in their studies. Dr. Mason has been working on issues of gender-based violence and medical education for 20 years and has contributed to the development of relevant policies at the local, provincial and national level.
Alex is a member of the Kanien’kehá:ka community of Kahnawake, in Quebec near Montreal. He has extensive experience working with the Kahnawake School Diabetes Prevention Project as a Diabetes Prevention Intervention Facilitator, Training Coordinator and Executive Director. He is the recipient of an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science from Queen’s University recognized for his exemplary work with a number of national diabetes organizations including Health Canada’s Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative. He strives to integrate the traditional knowledge of the Rotinonsonni (The People of the Longhouse) into his daily life and share traditional teachings through community support mechanisms. Alex’s holds close ties to Indigenous communities and believes strongly that health promotion, community mobilization, and personal empowerment for healthy lifestyles are the key to healing multi-generational trauma. He serves as Co-Lead of the Diabetes Action Canada Program on Indigenous Peoples’ Health.
Alex has been involved with the Kahnawake Schools Diabetes Prevention Project, long-standing CBPR project since 1994 which has been associated with PRAM. His research and academic interests include diabetes prevention, Indigenous health promotion, community mobilization, mentorship, personal empowerment and Indigenous research methodologies.
Alex is Director of the Quebec Indigenous Mentorship Network, Director of the Kahnawake Indigenous Youth Mentorship Project, part of a larger national CIHR Pathways 2 project. He is an active participant with the SPOR Diabetes Action Canada project as a Co-Investigator, co-Lead of the Indigenous Peoples Health program, and a patient partner. Alex is also a co-investigator with the new Network Environment for Indigenous Health Research which will be hosted by McGill University.
Alex is also involved with Indigenous focussed curriculum development for medical residents to develop and nurture cultural safety when working with Indigenous patients and community, and is a coordinator in the development of a partnership between Family Medicine, McGill University and the Indigenous Health Centre of Tiohtiake.
Dr. McGavock established his lab at the Children’s Hospital Institute of Manitoba in 2006 to study the treatment and prevention of type 2 diabetes in youth. He is a CIHR Applied Health Chair (2014-2019) and the lead for the DREAM and DEVOTION research teams that have secured over $22M in external funding to reduce the burden of type 2 diabetes in youth in Canada. He currently is the PI for a CIHR Pathways team grant that assembled Canada’s largest network of scientists and Indigenous communities focused on the prevention of type 2 diabetes among Indigenous youth.
Dr. Saïd Mekary a complété ses études en sciences de l’activité physique à l’Université de Montréal. Notamment, il a complété sa maitrise et son doctorat dans les grands centres de recherche de Montréal, soit à l’Institut de Cardiologie de Montréal (ICM) et au Centre de recherche de l’Institut universitaire de gériatrie de Montréal (CRIUGM). De 2014 jusqu’à tout récemment, Dr. Mekary a détenu les titres de professeur agrégé et directeur du programme communautaire Acadia Active Aging à l’Université Acadia à Wolfville en Nouvelle-Écosse ainsi que celui de professeur adjoint au département de kinésiologie de l’Université Dalhousie à Halifax en Nouvelle-Écosse.
Depuis plusieurs années, Dr. Mekary est un chercheur établi dans le domaine des sciences de l’activité physique et s’est imposé comme chef de fil dans la recherche sur le vieillissement. Son programme de recherche porte essentiellement sur la relation entre les différents types d’activité physique, la santé cardiovasculaire, la physiologie cérébrale et les changements cognitifs associés au vieillissement. Le Dr. Mekary a notamment reçu le prix du projet de recherche exceptionnelle de la Faculté des études professionnelles de l’Université Acadia pour ses travaux portant sur la physiologie de l’exercice.
Avec son entrée en poste à l’Université de Sherbrooke, le Dr. Mekary vise à poursuivre ses axes de recherche afin de mieux comprendre les mécanismes physiologiques et métaboliques par lesquels l’activité physique peut améliorer la santé physique et cognitive des adultes sains et ceux aux prises avec des maladies chroniques. Un important volet des travaux du Dr. Mekary concernera l’effet de l’entrainement physique en laboratoire sur la performance cognitive des personnes âgées ainsi que le réinvestissement des résultats de recherche en communauté. Son objectif ultime est de mettre en place un centre d’excellence en recherche sur le vieillissement, l’activité physique et la cognition, contribuant ainsi à la santé et au bien-être de la population vieillissante.
Andréanne Michaud (PhD, RD) is an Assistant Professor at Université Laval School of Nutrition and a researcher at the Quebec Heart and Lung Institute (IUCPQ) and the Centre Nutrition, santé et société (NUTRISS) at the Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods (INAF). Using a combination of brain imaging, neurobehavioral and metabolic methodologies, her current research program focuses on understanding the neurobehavioral and metabolic determinants of appetite regulation and food intake and the impact of weight-loss surgery on brain function and structure, appetite behaviour and cognition in humans.
Dr. Mukerji’s primary appointment is in the Division of Endocrinology at Women’s College Hospital with cross-appointment to Division of Endocrinology at UHN/MSH. She has a Master’s degree in Quality Improvement and Patient Safety from the Institute of Health Policy and Management Evaluation at the University of Toronto and is the Clinician Lead in Quality at the Women’s College Institute of Health systems solutions and Virtual care. Her academic interests include: 1) system improvement efforts for those with complex chronic diseases such as diabetes 2) quality improvement in endocrinology in pregnancy care and transitional care populations, and 3) safety and quality care processes in the ambulatory setting. She is actively involved in the Young Adults Type 1 diabetes Transition Care program at WCH at the Diabetes amd Endocrine in Pregnancy program at Mt Sinai and WCH. She has a special interest in the care of patients with chronic, complex diseases and examining innovative models of care delivery including virtual models. She has co-developed a set of indicators that also encompasses patient-reported indicators to measure quality of diabetes care as part of an ambulatory scorecard.
Michelle is the coordinator for the Training and Mentoring Program at Diabetes Action Canada. Michelle holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration and a Bachelor’s degree in Education from the Université de Moncton. Since her appointment in January 2017, Michelle has contributed to the development of the Training and Mentoring Program Performance Strategy and its Mentorship, Internship and Fellowship Programs. She has also collaborated with partners at Diabetes Canada in the organization of the Diabetes Canada Trainee Days offered in conjunction with the Diabetes Canada Professional Conference in the fall. Michelle also organizes and coordinates Patient-Oriented Research (POR) Training Sessions in both English and French. Michelle looks forward to working more closely with patient partners, trainees and researchers in developing future training sessions that will better address their needs.
Adhiyat was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 2001. She has been a patient partner with Diabetes Action Canada since 2017 and has been involved in several research projects, including as the lead patient partner for the T1ME Trial and a member of the Research Governing Committee. Aside from this, Adhiyat is a volunteer for T1International as her lived experience with type 1 diabetes has pushed her interest in advocating for insulin affordability and access to health care. She is currently a Master’s student studying global health and also serves as a patient research partner with the IMAGINE Network to advocate for patients living with diabetic gastroparesis.
Barb and Clarence are members of Pine Creek First Nation in Treaty 4 Territory are both retired from the public service and continue to be active on various Boards and committees. Barbara is on the National Board for Cultural Human Resources Council from Ottawa, serving on the Standing Indigenous Advisory Council to the Canadian Human Rights museum with Clarence. Both serve on the Peguis National Elders Gathering, DAC Diabetes Action Canada, National Climate Change Committee; both are Cultural/Spiritual Advisors for First Peoples Investment Group as well as APTN – Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. Clarence is also a member of the St. James Historical Museum and the Healthy Aboriginal Network in Vancouver. Clarence and Barbara were recognized as Wisdom Keepers by the Circle of Educators in Manitoba as well as both are recipients of the Golden Jubilee Award.
Dr Jason Noble is an ophthalmologist and medical retina specialist based out of Toronto, Ontario. He completed his undergraduate and medical studies, as well as his residency training in Ophthalmology, at the University of Toronto. He then pursued a fellowship in medical retina and diabetic eye disease at the Joslin Diabetes Center, Harvard Medical School. He is board certified both in Canada and the United States.
Dr Noble works in private practice in Toronto and is a staff ophthalmologist at both Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Markham-Stouffville hospital. He is actively involved in student and resident education and is an assistant professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences at the University of Toronto. He has been actively involved in clinical research, having published in many peer-reviewed journals, and has lectured at major national and international meetings.
Dr. Paul Oh is Medical Director, GoodLife Fitness Chair and Senior Scientist in the Cardiovascular Disease Prevention and Rehabilitation Program at the KITE Research Institute at University Health Network and Peter Munk Cardiac Centre of the University Health Network, and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto. His academic focus is on the design, delivery and evaluation of exercise, lifestyle and educational interventions for the prevention and management of diabetes, heart disease and other chronic conditions.
Dr. Monica Parry is a Nurse Practitioner (Adult) with over 35 years of cardiovascular (CV) clinical experience. Her clinical expertise has laid the foundation for a program of research to reduce the burden of CV disease and its complications. Dr. Parry is a member of the Banting & Best Diabetes Centre and is Core Faculty and a Collaborating Investigator with the Collaborative Program in Resuscitation Science, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. She is interested in sex and gender issues and is currently leading a research team to develop and test at heart: A WebApp for Women with Heart Disease. Dr. Parry has received advanced training from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) to engage patients as partners in health research and is currently funded (CIHR) with Clinical Trials Ontario (CTO) to develop a toolkit/decision resource for patients and investigators wishing to engage in Patient-Oriented Research (POR). She is a co-investigator in GOING-FWD (https://www.mcgill.ca/going-fwd4gender/), an international consortium aimed to integrate and evaluate sex and gender dimensions in applied health research in noncommunicable diseases (e.g., diabetes, CVD) and a member of the Knowledge Translation and Mobilization Working Group of the Canadian Women’s Heart Health Alliance.
Long-term complications of diabetes, including eye and kidney disease cluster in families suggesting that genetic factors may be involved. Using DNA from large numbers of people with diabetes who have their complications measured, we are using high throughput methods to measure all of the common genetic variation in the human genome to identify which ones are associated with specific complications. In addition, we are identifying genetic loci that are associated with the major risk factors for diabetes complications – glycemia, blood pressure, body composition and lipids.
Kylie Peacock has lived with T1D for more than 20 years and has been an advocate and a supportive voice in the community, in particular in the area of diabetes and mental health. She has joined the Research Governance Committee and will be a patient representative for the National Diabetes Repository. Kylie hopes more people living with diabetes will consider becoming a patient partner in order to ensure diverse voices and experiences are represented in diabetes research. “Being a patient partner is extremely rewarding. Not only do I have the opportunity to contribute to meaningful and impactful research, but I have the opportunity to build important relationships with other patient partners, staff, and researchers,” she says.
Centered on type 1 diabetes and using longitudinal cohort methods as well as clinical trials, his research work has focused on 1) Early biomarkers of diabetes complications and biomarkers of progression to advanced disease, and 2) Interventions for prevention of complications, including artificial pancreas technologies and disease-modifying adjunctive-to-insulin pharmacotherapies. Principal findings include “early progressive renal decline” which permitted identification of novel factors now subject to a large-scale nephropathy clinical trial, and the development of In-vivo Corneal Confocal Microscopy as an early small fibre biomarker for neuropathy for which he leads an NIH-funded international consortium. He leads a phase 3 trial of Sodium Glucose-Linked Transporter-2 inhibition in type 1 diabetes, and his first project in the Diabetes Action Canada portfolio combines such adjunctive therapy with artificial pancreas technology as a strategy to maximally impact glycemic control in type 1 diabetes.
Dr. Ploeg co-leads the Community Partnership Program (CPP) for Diabetes Self-Management for Older Adults – Canada with Drs. Maureen Markle-Reid and Ruta Valaitis. Their goal is to address gaps in the delivery of diabetes-related health services for adults 65 and older with multiple chronic conditions (MCC). Their innovative community-based model for diabetes care aims to improve diabetes self-management and the quality of care for older adults with diabetes and MCC. Using a multi-site randomized controlled trial in Ontario, Prince Edward Island and Quebec, they are further evaluating this 6-month intervention in three provinces over four years with funding from Canadian Institutes of Health Research Pan-Canadian SPOR Network in Primary and Integrated Health Care Innovations (PIHCI), Diabetes Action Canada, McMaster Institute for Research on Aging (MIRA) and Scarborough Health Network.
Marie-Ève is an Assistant Professor at Université de Sherbrooke (Saguenay campu). She graduated in Nursing in 2005, completed a PhD in Nursing Sciences at Université de Sherbrooke in 2016 and a PDF at U Laval with France Légaré in 2017. She is an expert in knowledge mobilization and patient engagement in the context of primary care of chronic diseases. She is a PI of the CIHR National Training Entity (INSPIRE) and is funded by several other sources. She already trained over 25 graduate students and HQP and published more than 42 peer-reviewed manuscript since 2016.
Marie-Pascale Pomey MD-PhD is a renowned senior investigator in public health specialized in patient engagement in the healthcare system, with over 50 publications in that field. She is Professor in the Department of Management, Evaluation and Health Policy at UdeM. She is co-director of the Center of Excellence on Partnership with Patients and the Public that develops new practices that focus on dialogue and sharing knowledge to improve the patient experience and effectiveness of healthcare. She holds a Chair in Advanced Technology Assessment and Modalities focusing on engaging citizens and patients in the transformation of organizations and the healthcare system.
Conrad is a Senior Project Manager at Diabetes Action Canada, managing the National Diabetes Repository, a virtual platform that enables secure analytics of primary care data. His focus is on data governance and acquisition, privacy-preserving record linkage and fostering relationships with data partners, stakeholders and industry leaders. Conrad studied Business Management at Sheridan College with a focus on Human Resources Management. He also served as the College’s Senator for Community and Liberal Studies. In 2014 he went on to receive a certificate in Project Management from the Schulich School of Business at York University.
Specialties: Project Management, Data Governance, Relationship Management, Government Liaison, Process Management
Dr. Presseau is a Scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute and Associate Professor in the School of Epidemiology & Public Health and School of Psychology at the University of Ottawa. He leads the Psychology and Health Research Group (PaHRG) and is a core faculty member of the Centre for Implementation Research at the Ottawa Hospital. He holds a Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Aberdeen (UK). His research program operates at the intersection between health psychology and implementation science, focusing on developing and evaluate interventions to support changing healthcare professional behaviours and health behaviours of patients and the public.
Roberta is Coast Salish from the Snuneymuxw/Cowichan Tribes, a mother and grandmother. Elder Roberta has committed to professional and volunteer work in the Health, Social Services, and Education fields for most of her career. She is dedicated to building a strong base of knowledge to make improvements to the health care system, specifically for Indigenous people. Elder Roberta has worked in partnership with researchers at the UBC School of Nursing on a number of studies. In that role, she has guided study activities around Indigenous approaches to health. Her role has been to ensure that the research is relevant and responsive to Indigenous contexts and to assist in implementation of interventions within clinical settings. She oversees ceremonial and traditional aspects of research projects, including integration of traditional healing approaches with ‘Western’ approaches. The studies she has been involved with relating to structural and interpersonal violence and trauma – including colonialism, racism, and poverty – and their effects on health care access and quality for Indigenous people.
Rémi Rabasa-Lhoret is an endocrinologist at the Montreal Clinical Research Institute (IRCM) and at Université de Montréal university hospital (CHUM), director of the diabetes clinic, the metabolic diseases research unit and Vice president (clinic & clinical research) at the IRCM as well as full professor at Nutrition Department of Université de Montréal. He holds two research chaisr. He has published over 330 manuscripts and book chapters (H-index 66) and received multiple awards. He holds funding from multiple agencies including NIH, CIHR-foundation grant, Diabetes Canada & CIHR-JDRF-SPOR. The main research areas of the group are: Reduce the frequency and consequences of hypoglycemia for patients with type 1 diabetes (T1D) and Cystic fibrosis related diabetes.
Dr. Rac is a Lead of the Research Program in Health Technology Assessment (HTA) and Network Analytics for the Diabetes Action Canada working closely with other programs, in particular, Diabetic Retinopathy Program on the evaluation of the Pilot Tele-ophthalmology Screening Program for Diabetic Retinopathy. Dr Rac and her team lead the evaluation of the Diabetes Action Canada, collaborating with Drs Mathieu Ouimet and Maman Joyce Dogba and their teams from the Université Laval.
Dr Rac`s research interests and expertise are in the area of health services research and the HTA focused on the design, implementation and evaluation of the complex interventions in the HTA research (technologies and services) and chronic disease management in the community (diabetes, heart failure, COPD, chronic kidney disease, chronic wounds). More recently her research is also focused on the system level effects of health technologies and how they impact healthcare delivery
Danièle, born in Belgium, arrived in Quebec at the age of 14. She retired from the University of Quebec in Montreal, after 23 years as an administrative executive and lecturer at the School of Management Sciences. She holds a social service diploma and a master’s degree in public administration from ENAP. Since her retirement, she has volunteered for various organizations with diverse missions: mental health, sick children, children’s home, health promotion group, collective kitchen for seniors, etc. Her involvement with Diabetes Action Canada allows her to continue to be involved in the life of society. Sharing, teaching, listening are the values that have always been at the heart of its interests and actions. A mother of two, she was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes a long time ago (around age 35). For a long time she faced this situation alone and it was with great pleasure that she learned about Diabetes Action Canada and the possibility of joining this group and participating in the search for solutions and support.
Dr. Paula Rochon leads the Women’s Xchange, a women’s health research knowledge translation and exchange centre, based at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto. Her team has worked with Diabetes Action Canada since its earliest inception, providing insights on the integration of sex and gender in the different research studies of the network, reviewing proposal materials and editing application documents to incorporate a sex and gender lens. Dr. Rochon and her expert sex and gender researchers at Women’s Xchange will continue to support Diabetes Action Canada to ensure that sex and gender are considered at all stages of the research.
Dr. Ronksley’s research focuses on patients with multiple chronic conditions (multi-morbidity). Specifically, his program of research aims to improve our understanding of the subset of chronic disease patients that drive health care utilization and spending. Using novel data-linkage methodologies, his work explores the clinical (co-morbid) profiles of patients with multi-morbidity, how they engage with the health care system, and whether care pathways can be modified to improve health outcomes for patients.
Dr Rosolowsky is a pediatric endocrinologist with a major interest in type 1 diabetes and education at the University of Alberta. During her training she completed a research fellowship at the Joslin Diabetes Centre. She is an active participant in the Canadian Pediatric Endocrine Group and has been a chapter author for the Diabetes Canada Clinical Practice Guideline chapter for management of type 1 diabetes in children. She is interested to assess and bridge the gap between how and why families choose glucose monitoring technologies and their goals and the goals of providers – with the objective of helping develop tools to help providers support families to gain most value from new and emerging technologies
Our research focuses on finding cures for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. From a biological perspective, we are interested in understanding how human cells respond to extracellular cues to maintain and ensure their function and survival. A central focus is to better understand how the pancreatic beta cell converts feeding cues into signals leading to insulin synthesis and secretion. We use high-throughput functional genomic imaging screens to identify novel players involved in cell signaling pathways that control human pancreatic beta cell proliferation. In addition, we are interested in the function and quality control of mitochondria, critical subcellular organelles essential for cell function and survival. In addition to Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, our work impacts upon cancer and neurodegeneration.
Current work in the lab is directed towards understanding how insulin-producing β cells respond to glucose and cAMP signals and to understand the signaling machinery that regulates β cell proliferation and regeneration. In this regard, we focus on the role of LKB1-AMPK signaling pathway and the CREB coactivator CRTC2. To identify novel gene products and signal transduction mechanisms that are involved in β cell biology, we employ biochemical, cell biological, proteomic and functional genomic approaches, and generate animal models to test the role of these genes in islet function and glucose metabolism in vivo.
Current activities include developing, implementing and evaluating of innovative models of multidisciplinary diabetes care.
Professor Ervin Sejdić, Research Chair in Artificial Intelligence for Health Outcomes at Research & Innovation, North York General Hospital, is an Associate Professor in the Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto. He received B.E.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Western Ontario in 2002 and 2008, respectively. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto with a cross-appointment at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation teaching hospital. From 2010 until 2011, he was a research fellow at Harvard Medical School with a cross-appointment at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. In 2011, Professor Sejdić joined the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh as a tenure-track Assistant Professor, subsequently promoted to a tenured Associate Professor. He also held secondary appointments in the Department of Bioengineering (Swanson School of Engineering), the Department of Biomedical Informatics (School of Medicine), and the Intelligent Systems Program (School of Computing and Information) at the University of Pittsburgh.
From his earliest research, he has been eager to contribute to the advancement of scientific knowledge through carefully executed experiments and ground-breaking published work. For his strong contributions, Sejdić was named the editor-in-chief of Biomedical Engineering Online; an area editor of the IEEE Signal Processing Magazine, the highest rated journal in the field of signal processing; and an associate editor of Digital Signal Processing and IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering. Sejdić’s research interests include biomedical signal processing, gait analysis, swallowing difficulties, advanced information systems in medicine, rehabilitation engineering, assistive technologies and anticipatory medical devices.
Sejdić is committed to excellence in education and strives to guide and motivate students to fully understand the fundamental principles of applied sciences, and pays considerable attention to providing students with a learning environment that stimulates collaborative discussions.
Dr. Selby’s research focus is on innovative methods to understand and treat addictive behaviours and their comorbidities. He also uses technology to combine clinical medicine and public health methods to scale up and test health interventions. His cohort of 240,000 treated smokers in Ontario is an example.
He has received grant funding totaling over 85 million dollars from CIHR, NIH, and Ministry of Health and has published 38 research reports prepared for the government.
He is the Chair of the Medical Education Council for the American Society of Addiction Medicine. Dr. Selby mentors Fellows in Addiction Medicine and Addiction Psychiatry, junior investigators and medical students. The use of innovative methods to communicate messages makes Dr. Selby a sought after speaker for various topics including addictive disorders, motivational interviewing, and health behavior change at individual and system levels.
Dr. Sénéchal’s research interests focus on the impact of physical activity and exercise training on cardiometabolic health in individuals living with obesity. More specifically, his research program encompasses three pillars. The first pillar aims to understand why some people living with obesity experience benefits from exercise while other do not display these benefits from the same exercise intervention. A better understanding of these predictors as well as the mechanism of such an exercise response will help designing appropriates intervention for people living with obesity. The second pillar aims to identify predictors and understand why some people living with obesity remain healthy despite high adiposity levels. Therefore, understanding different obesity phenotype might offer a more comprehensive way to manage cardiometabolic health. The third pillar aims to develop community programs to increase physical activity among individuals, especially obese youth.
Dr. Peter Senior is a Professor of Medicine and Director of the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the University of Alberta. He is the Medical Director of the Clinical Islet Transplant Program and co-director of the Northern Alberta Diabetic Nephropathy Prevention Program. He is originally from the UK where he completed his specialist training in Diabetes and Endocrinology and received his Ph.D. in 2002. His clinical and research interests focus on type 1 diabetes, islet transplantation, hypoglycemia and diabetic nephropathy.He has been an investigator in a number of clinical trials in both diabetes and islet transplantation ranging from large multicentre studies (eg ACCORD) to smaller investigator-initiated trials. Dr. Senior is a popular speaker who has lectured in North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. He has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed publications. He has served as an associate editor for the journals Diabetic Medicine, Cell Transplantation and the Canadian Journal of Diabetes. He is Chair-elect of the Professional Section of the Canadian Diabetes Association
Dr. Baiju Shah is a health services researcher and clinician-scientist in endocrinology. He is a staff physician, Divisions of Endocrinology and Obstetric Medicine, Department of Medicine, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Head of the Division of Endocrinology. He is an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto and IHPME, a Scientist at Sunnybrook Research Institute and a Senior Core Scientist at ICES. His research seeks to understand and improve the quality of care and long-term outcomes of people with diabetes. He has national and international leadership in several areas of research, including diabetes care in ethnic, immigrant and indigenous populations; long-term cardiometabolic consequences for women following gestational diabetes; and novel models of healthcare delivery to improve outcomes.
Tom Sheidow is Associate Professor of the Department of Ophthalmology at Western University, London, Canada. Dr Sheidow’s major clinical and research interests are in AMD and macular diseases; he has been a participant in several of the major AMD and diabetes clinical trials over recent years. He was the co-chair for the current Canadian trials evaluating Lucentis vs Laser for diabetic macular edema (RESPOND) and the use of the Treat-and-Extend Regimen for Lucentis in AMD (CanTREAT). An active member of the Canadian Retinal Trials Group, Dr Sheidow’s current areas of interest are AMD and teleophthalmology and its application to patient screening and referral. Dr Sheidow is a Fellow of the RCPSC and a member of the Canadian Ophthalmology Society and is the current retina section editor for the Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology.
Diana Sherifali is an Associate Professor in the School of Nursing at McMaster, and a registered nurse. She is a clinical nurse specialist in the Diabetes Care and Research Program at Hamilton Health Sciences. She is also director of the McMaster Evidence Review and Synthesis Team, based in the School of Nursing at McMaster. Effective July 1, 2019, Diana was appointed the inaugural Heather M. Arthur Population Health Research Institute.
A McMaster alumna, Diana earned both her BScN (1999) and PhD (2006) from the university. She joined the School of Nursing in 2009.
Diana’s research focuses on optimizing the management of diabetes and quality of life of people with diabetes across the lifespan. The broad goal of her research program is to engage individuals to effectively self-manage and mitigate the impact of diabetes on their life. Her research will examine health coaching and digital solutions to improve health-related outcomes and extend diabetes self-management.
Dr. Shulman’s research program is focused on developing and evaluating health services interventions to improve the health and quality of care for youth living with diabetes. Areas of focus include transition to adult care and reducing socioeconomic disparities in care and outcomes. She is particularly interested in developing and evaluating interventions that leverage existing population-level administrative datasets to inform health system change. Currently, an ongoing multi-site study, Bridging the Gap, is testing an audit and feedback-based intervention to improve glycemic control after transfer to adult diabetes care. Another study, KiT (Keeping in Touch), in collaboration with patients and providers, is developing and testing a text message-based algorithm to deliver just-in-time personalized transition education that will help young adults transition to adult care.
Debbie is the Patient Partner co-lead for the Diabetic Retinopathy Screening Program and serves on the Diabetes Action Canada Steering Council. She has been living with type 1 diabetes (T1D) for 53 years. Due to diabetic retinopathy, she completely lost her eyesight 27 years ago. In 2003, she was part of a Clinical Islet Cell Transplant Trial (aka Edmonton Protocol) and was fortunate to receive two islet cell transplants, which she is certain saved her life from diabetes complications. Research has played a major role in her health and wellbeing. Throughout the years Debbie has had many opportunities to speak to community groups on behalf of Diabetes Canada and JDRF about how research has had such a positive effect on the lives of so many.
Aleksandra is a Scientific Associate within the Program for Health System and Technology Evaluation at the Toronto General Hospital Research Institute and Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto (IHPME). She is well trained in mixed methods and led the economic evaluation of the tele-retinopathy program. Aleksandra has developed a profound interest in the interplay of social theories and economics using the intersectionality framework guided by a health equity lens. Her goal is to mainstream how we conceptualize the impact of programs/interventions with respect to (in)equity and access to care on women, people from lower socioeconomic groups or people from certain cultures or racial backgrounds while remaining focused on economic analysis.
I have been living with Type 2 Diabetes for that past 40 years and take insulin therapy to manage it. I originate from India and have lived in Canada since 1976. I studied at McGill University in Montreal and until recently had my own business with 15 employees. I am actively engaged in volunteer work at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) in Montreal. I am Treasurer of the MUHC Patients Committee and an elected member of the Medical Mission Committee. I am also a member of Montreal General Hospital Patients Committee and participate in research group discussions.
Olivera joined the Diabetes Action Canada Diabetic Retinopathy Screening (DRS) program as a manager in 2017. The nation-wide DRS network focuses on establishing a teleophthalmology screening program across Canada as a more efficient and cost-effective way for diagnosis and prevention of diabetes-related eyesight complications. Olivera is responsible for daily operational activities and the coordination of all DRS projects, related to building and improving access to eye examination using teleophthalmology.
Over the past 7.5 years, she has been a research coordinator/manager of the Department of Ophthalmology Clinical Trials program at Toronto Western Hospital – UHN. She has also trained as a medical doctor in Serbia.
Nadia is a policy analyst who has been living with diabetes type 2 for 11 years. She holds graduate degrees in Law, Management and Project Management. She is passionate about research and is interested in cultural aspects, wellbeing, nutrition and support given to immigrants dealing with diabetes. She advocates for raising awareness and the empowerment of patient partners to make a difference. She believes in knowledge transfer, empowerment, peer support, mentoring and loves teaching. She became a patient partner with Diabetes Action Canada in February 2017 and serves as a member of Diabetes Action Canada’s Francophone and Immigrants Patient Circle and Steering Council. Nadia lives in Gatineau, Quebec.
Frank Tang, a Patient Partner at Diabetes Action Canada, is engaged in active diabetes research. His mother had Diabetes in the last ten years of her life and he witnessed first-hand as she struggled with glaucoma, loss of a toe and congestive heart failure. Frank is interested in identifying the challenges individuals face in the health care system and factors that contribute to use of health care services by individuals with diabetes and other chronic health conditions. Frank is a Professional Engineer in Nuclear Engineering with Ontario Power Generation for almost three decades and an adjunct Professor at Ryerson University teaching Information Technology Systems Management and Supply Chain Management courses.
Marie-Claude Tremblay is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Emergency Medicine at the Faculty of Medicine at Université Laval (Québec, Canada). Her research expertises include qualitative methods, patient engagement and participatory research approaches. Her current research uses participatory approaches to make the health system more equitable and accessible to vulnerable populations such as Indigenous communities. She leads various projects that address cultural safety in healthcare, issues of stigma and colonialism in the health system, patient participation in research and training, and reflexivity as a means of transforming healthcare practices.
Health Informatics, Health Service Delivery, Electronic Medical Records, Administrative Databases, Quantitative Data Analysis, Chronic Diseases, Observational Studies
Brigitte Vachon’s work focuses on the development and evaluation of interventions aimed at promoting patient participation in improving the quality of health services, as well as fostering interprofessional collaboration. She is also interested in the analysis of factors and the evaluation of strategies promoting change in professional practices in primary care and rehabilitation. She is a member of the Ordre des ergothérapeutes du Québec.
Bruce’s research, funded by CIHR, JDRF, and the Stem Cell Network, aims to understand how pancreatic islet beta cells function and why they are lost or are dysfunctional in both type 1 and type 2 diabetes and following transplantation. He has made contributions to our understanding of islet inflammation the biosynthesis of beta cell hormones, and the pathophysiology of the beta cell peptide islet amyloid polypeptide. He has chaired and served on review panels for CIHR, JDRF, and NIH, and currently sits on advisory board of the journal Endocrinology and as an associate editor of Islets and Diabetologia. His contributions to diabetes research and service have been recognized by the Diabetes Canada Young Scientist award (2006), a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal (2013), and the Geoffrey L Hammond Lectureship (2016).
Xiaolin is a physician, a public health specialist, and a public health researcher. He received his training in China and Canada, and has been a faculty in the UK, Hong Kong, China and Canada. Xiaolin has conducted research using implementation science frameworks to change clinical practice and make impacts at the policy level in areas of antimicrobial resistance, tuberculosis control and diabetes/ hypertension care. He has led a multidisciplinary team to successfully design, implementation and evaluated evidence-based interventions in China, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Uganda, Ghana, and Swaziland. He is a member of the Board of Directors and served as immediate Vice-President of the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease.
Dr. Alanna Weisman is a Clinician Scientist and Endocrinologist at Mount Sinai Hospital and University Health Network. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto, a Clinician Scientist at the Lunenfeld Tanenbaum Research Institute, and an adjunct Scientist at ICES. Her research program is focused on investigating and understanding determinants of outcomes in type 1 diabetes, to ultimately inform novel management strategies. She is the recipient of the Banting & Best Diabetes Centre New Investigator Award for 2020-2022.
David (Dave) lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick. He is a Patient Partner with Diabetes Action Canada (DAC; joined in 2018), the Maritime SPOR Support Unit (MSSU; joined in 2013), and Patients for Patient Safety Canada (PFPSC, associated with Healthcare Excellence Canada; joined in 2012). From 2005-2011 he chaired the New Brunswick Surgical Care Network Advisory Committee, which designed and implemented new procedures that reduced surgical wait times in New Brunswick by 50-70%. During 2012-2015 he was the patient representative on the New Brunswick Primary Health Care Steering Committee, which changed the delivery of primary health care in New Brunswick by producing an extensive Guidelines document adopted for Family Medicine New Brunswick (2017). Dave currently serves on five DAC committees, and is a patient partner on four CIHR grants. Since March 2019 he has co-facilitated twelve courses on Patient Oriented Research.
From 2003-2013, Dave was a caregiver for Solveig, his wife of 50 years, as she dealt with five cancer diagnoses, three surgeries, two radiation therapy sessions, and three chemotherapy sessions. Solveig passed away in March 2013 and Dave misses her every day.
Don’s academic work has focused on three areas: governance over the use of personal information and biological samples for health research; boundaries between research and practice in public health, focusing on the ethical conduct of public health evaluative activities, regardless of whether they be labeled research, surveillance, quality improvement, etc.; and systems to support public/patient participation and involvement in the learning healthcare system. His work has informed much of the CIHR’s policy around privacy and access to data for research purposes – most notably through the document “CIHR Best Practices for Protecting Privacy in Health Research” , much of which has been incorporated into guidance the second edition of the Tri-Council Policy Statement on Ethical Conduct of Research Involving Humans. His work with Public Health Ontario resulted in the development of an innovative harmonized approach to the ethical conduct of public health evaluative activities.
With an interdisciplinary background in human factors engineering and social sciences, Dr. Witteman’s research is about person-centred digital health, including a focus on how best to adapt technology to people rather than expecting people to adapt to technology. She specializes in human-computer interaction in health education, risk communication and decision making, including design methods to support inclusive user- and patient-centeredness. Dr. Witteman has lived with type 1 diabetes since being diagnosed as a young child in 1983. Her role in Diabetes Action Canada is to serve as a bridge between people whose lives involve managing diabetes 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and scientists who study diabetes but don’t live with it.
David Wong, is an Honours graduate from the University of Toronto’s Medical Doctorate program who specializes in Vitreous and Retina surgery after completing a residency in ophthalmology at U of T and a fellowship with Dr. Michael Shea in Toronto followed by a second fellowship with Dr. Stanley Chang in Columbia, New York. Dr. Wong is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology. He is also a member of the Canadian Ophthalmology Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Society of Retina Specialists and the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology. Numerous awards have been given to him locally and internationally including the American Society of Vitreoretinal Surgeons (ASRS) Senior Award. He is the past director of the fellowship programs in the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences at the University of Toronto and has founded the national fellowship committee in the Canadian Ophthalmology Society. Locally he started the GTA Retina subspecialty group rounds in 1998 which has been running ever since. His recent interests include better diabetic retinopathy surveillance that may catch the disease in the earlier stages and developing new ophthalmic biomaterials.
David is a retired dentist from Parry Sound in Northern Ontario and has lived complication-free with type 1 diabetes for 70 years. He was one year old at the time of diagnosis when treatment and management were still very primitive. He has been connected to diabetes support throughout his life. In the 1980’s he co-organized a diabetes self-care group at the local hospital that included patients, nurses, doctors & family supporters. He also participated in numerous insulin antibody studies in Toronto. In 1980, he became Ontario’s first insulin pumper, with a very large and now archaic one-program insulin pump. In the 1990s he was appointed to serve on the Board of the newly formed provincial Northern Diabetes Health Network. NDHN proved to be highly successful, efficient and effective in improving lives & greatly reducing the debilitating diabetic complications over 20 years. He served every position on the executive, including President and Chair for several terms. He was inducted into the renowned 50 Year Club of the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, U.S.A. in 1997 as a survivor, and still complication free after many years of very intensive management. He finds it hopeful that what started as a very small group of members has now become a very large one that continues to grow! He was an early participant in Dr. George King’s ongoing Longevity Study at Joslin, and continues to be involved in the Canadian arm of the study.
Jane completed her postdoc training in the McGavock Laboratory at U Manitoba. Her research focus is exercise and dysglycemia with a particular interest in women’s health relative to the menstrual cycle and menopause. She has been engaged in patient partner driven work on the co-design of trials for physical activity for young people living with T1 diabetes. She is an expert in sex and gender relative to exercise and T1 diabetes and has received grants from the Heart and Stroke Foundation in Alberta and the Women’s and Children’s Health Research Institute. Jane is a co-PI on the JDRF application and will be a key investigator for the next wave of clinical trials focused on physical activity and health outcomes for persons living with T1 diabetes.
Rose Yeung is a clinical endocrinologist with special interests in improving diabetes care delivery with peer support, community health workers and improved educational resources. She received the following awards; Outstanding Health Care Professional, Diabetes Canada, 2017, Diabetes Junior Investigator Gold, AstraZeneca Canada, 2016, and Vivian Fonseca Scholar, American Diabetes Association, 2015. Her aim is to develop interventions for preventing and reducing the burden of gestational diabetes, improving outcomes for those with type 1 diabetes and assessing the impacts and treatments of young-onset type 2 diabetes.
Nancy Young is a full Professor at Laurentian University and holds a Research Chair in Rural and Northern Children’s Health. She began her career as a Scientist at the Hospital for Sick Children, where she remains an Adjunct Scientist. Her 25-year research career has been devoted to health measurement for and with school-aged children. She held a Canada Research Chair (Tier II) from 2005 to 2015. The assessment of Indigenous children’s health has been Dr Young’s primary focus for the last decade, in collaboration with Mrs Mary Jo Wabano, who have co-created the Aboriginal Children’s Health and Well-being Measure (www.ACHWM.ca). The ACHWM is an important holistic outcome measure that is supporting the evaluation of diabetes prevention programs for youth across Canada.
Dr. Yu is an associate professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto, and an associate scientist at Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital. Dr. Yu’s research interests focuses on the role of patient and clinician behaviour change within knowledge translation for chronic disease management. She is particularly interested in the development of innovative strategies for continuing professional development and patient education in diabetes care. Dr. Yu has led projects that explore these strategies through the curation of online, interactive self- management tools, empathy-based educational comics, insulin order sets, computer-based simulators and interprofessional workshops on knowledge, behavior change, clinical and psychological outcomes. She has received several awards in innovation and interprofessional education.
Abdelrahman is a biostatistician by training, holding a master’s degree in epidemiology and biostatistics from the University of Leeds, UK. Abdelrahman has experience as a biostatistics lecturer and clinical research assistant at several locations in England. He has provided epidemiological and bio-statistical expertise in research methodology and design, study protocol development, database structure, and analysis plan for diagnostic trials. His interests are in designing clinical trial protocols, observation data analysis, interpreting trends in complex data sets, monitoring performance and predictive modelling using different statistical software. Currently, Abdelrahman is a research assistant at St. Michael’s hospital cardiology research and a project coordinator for the Foot Care to Prevent Amputations research program.