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Patient Partners

Patient Partners

Roberta Price

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.

Danièle Remy

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.

Debbie Sissmore

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.

Hafeez Subhan

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.

Nadia Tabiou

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.

David Wells

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.

David Wright

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.

Become a Patient Partner

You will participate in discussions approximately once a month pertaining to research projects and strategic goals of the Network. You can also get involved in a research team! Researchers need your feedback to make sure research projects are relevant for people living with diabetes.

Diabetes Action Canada | SPOR Network
200 Elizabeth Street
Eaton Building, Room 12E242
Toronto, Ontario M5G 2C4 Canada

416-340-4800 ex. 2522
info@diabetesaction.ca