Methods Clusters Leads

Erin Michalak

Erin Michalak

Patient Engagement, Lead

Dr. Michalak’s background is in psychology, with a PhD awarded from the University of Wales College of Medicine in the UK. Her research expertise lies in patient-engagement in research, Community-Based Participatory Research, knowledge translation, bipolar disorder, quality of life, eHealth/mHealth and implementation science.

More information about Erin is available at the UBC Department of Psychiatry website.

Dr. Li is Professor, Harold Robinson/Arthritis Society Chair in Arthritic Diseases, and Canada Research Chair in Patient-Oriented Knowledge Translation at the Department of Physical Therapy, University of British Columbia. She is also a Senior Scientist at the Arthritis Research Canada. Linda earned a BSc in Physiotherapy at McGill University, a MSc at University of Western Ontario, and a PhD in Clinical Epidemiology at University of Toronto.

More information about Linda is available at the CHÉOS website.

Dr. Holmes’ bio is available at the Michael Smith Foundation website.

Dr. Wong is seconded to the Unit from the University of British Columbia (UBC), where he is an Associate Professor at the School of Population and Public Health, Program Head of Biostatistics at the Centre for Health Evaluation and Outcome Sciences (CHÉOS), and Associate Head of Methodology and Statistics at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Canadian HIV Trials Network (CTN).

More information about Hubert is available at the UBC School of Population and Public Health website.

Dr. Bansback is seconded to the Unit from the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia (UBC), where he is an Associate Professor. Among many affiliations, he is the Program Head of Decision Sciences at the Centre for Health Evaluation & Outcomes Sciences (CHÉOS), one of the core partner organizations of the BC SUPPORT Unit. Dr. Bansback holds a PhD in health economics from the University of Sheffield (UK), and completed his postdoctoral training at UBC. Currently a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) New Investigator, Dr. Bansback’s research is focused on using decision science to maximize the value patients and the public gain from health care.

More information about Nick is available at the UBC School of Population and Public Health website.

Dr. Whitehurst is seconded to the Unit from the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University (SFU). He is an economist who has specialized in the areas of health and health care throughout his career. Prior to his appointment at SFU in 2012, he held research positions at UBC, and at the Universities of Birmingham and Keele in the UK. His primary research interests focus on the measurement and valuation of quality of life and well-being outcome suitable for use in economic evaluation.

More information about David is available at the SFU Faculty of Health Sciences website.

Dr. Sawatzky holds a Canada Research Chair in Person-Centred Outcomes at Trinity Western University (TWU) and is a professor in TWU’s School of Nursing. He is also Patient-Reported Outcomes (PRO) Lead at the UBC Centre for Health Evaluation and Outcome Sciences (CHEOS). His extensive research program focuses on the validation and use of person-centred health outcomes measures and quality of life assessment instruments. Dr. Sawatzky’s work has a strong emphasis on integrating a palliative approach to care for people who have chronic life-limiting illnesses, and he is currently developing and evaluating statistical methods for patient-reported outcomes measurement in diverse populations.

More information about Rick is available at the CHEOS website.

Lena Cuthbertson

Lena Cuthbertson

Patient-Centred Measurement, Advisor

Dr. Cuthbertson oversees the British Columbia (BC) Canada Office of Patient-Centred Measurement and leads the BC Ministry of Health’s strategy for measurement and reporting of patient-centred care. Since 1998 Lena has been a surveyor with Accreditation Canada. Lena held a Picker Institute USA Fellowship between 2004 and 2006, exploring experiences of loneliness, helplessness and boredom in residential care for frail seniors. Lena has supported patient-centred measurement initiatives of many organizations, including the BC Office of the Seniors Advocate, Canadian Partnership Against Cancer, Canadian Foundation for Health Improvement, Health Quality Ontario, Ontario Hospital Association, Canadian Institute for Health Information, Nuffield Trust, King’s Fund, National Voices UK, Picker Institute Europe, International Foundation for Integrated Care, and Bureau of Health Information, Australia.

Lena is passionate about translating data, especially patient self-reported data, into information; and information into action to improve the satisfaction, experiences and clinical outcomes for patients and their families.

Dr. McGrail is Data Director for the BC Academic Health Sciences Network. She is also a Professor at UBC in the School of Population and Public Health and the Centre for Health Services and Policy Research, Scientific Director of Population Data BC, and the PI for the SPOR Canadian Data Platform. Her research interests are quantitative policy evaluation, aging and the use and cost of health care services, learning health systems and all aspects of population data science. She conducts research in partnership with clinicians, policy-makers and the public. Kim is a founding member of the International Population Data Linkage Network and founding Deputy Editor of the International Journal of Population Data Science.

More information about Kim is available at the UBC Centre for Health Services and Policy Research website.

Supporting Staff

Stirling Bryan

Stirling Bryan

BC Academic Health Sciences Network, President

Dr. Bryan is a health economist who has had extensive engagement with the policy and decision-making world.

His research track record reveals a long-standing goal of informing policy and practice, demonstrated, in part, through an extensive involvement with the UK National Institute for Health & Care Excellence (NICE). In 2005 he was awarded a Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellowship and spent one year at Stanford University, researching technology coverage decision making in US health care.

He emigrated to Canada in 2008 and continues a focus on policy-relevant research. He served for 6 years as chair for CADTH’s Health Technology Expert Review Panel, and his ongoing UBC faculty position, sponsored by Vancouver Coastal Health, sees him working alongside policy colleagues in one of BC’s largest regional health authorities.

Danielle Lavallee

Danielle Lavallee

BC Academic Health Sciences Network, Scientific Director

Dr. Lavallee is the Scientific Director for the British Columbia Academic Health Science Network and Affiliate Associate Professor in the Departments Health Services at the University of Washington. In her role she works across the organization to foster a patient-oriented approach to research and learning health systems. Her research focuses on advancing methods to incorporate patient and stakeholder perspectives into both clinical care and research. Over the past 10 years, her work has focused on assessing diverse stakeholder experiences with technology-enabled approaches to supporting care. Danielle holds a Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Kansas and a PhD in Pharmaceutical Health Services Research from the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

Amber Hui

Amber Hui

Knowledge Translation Specialist

Amber is a Knowledge Translation Specialist for the Methods Clusters. Her graduate work centered on critical social psychology, participatory action research methods, and narrative and arts-based approaches to social issues. Amber has been found in Vancouver, New York, and the Gulf Islands providing direct support to children and families with disabilities, engaging previously incarcerated women in counter-storying their narratives, collaborating on feminist activism aimed at de-medicalizing sex, building a prenatal text-messaging program for BC families, and developing research ideas into funded grants at the BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute & Women’s Health Research Institute.

Linnea Ritland

Linnea Ritland

Digital Communications Associate

Linnea holds a BFA in film production from the University of British Columbia and brings to the BC SUPPORT Unit years of experience in educational animation. She has also written, produced and directed several short films, including the award-winning Violet and June.

More information about Linnea is available at her website, linnearitland.com

Sara Lima Branco

Sara Lima Branco

Executive Assistant

Sara holds an Associate of Arts from Capilano University and a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology from Simon Fraser University.

Prior to joining the BC AHSN, Sara worked extensively in the hospitality and sales industries, providing administrative support to nationwide teams as well as coordinating a small catering department. As Executive Assistant to the Executive Director at the BC SUPPORT Unit, Sara has had the privilege to immerse herself in a wide portfolio of work, including supporting local and national initiatives, leading IT and renovation projects for the Hub, event planning and more.

Staff Alumni

Katie Verigin

Katie Verigin

Digital Communications Associate

Katie is a graduate of Quest University Canada in Squamish, BC where she focused on payday lending with feminist political economy lens. In the past, Katie has worked at entrepreneurship@UBC as the marketing manager, Awake Labs running a crowdfunding campaign, and Genomics Entrepreneurship as a scientific storyteller. In her downtime, you can find her petting dogs and roller skating.

Belinda Jampoh

Belinda Jampoh

Project Coordinator

Belinda comes to us from private industry, most recently as a logistics manager, and has skills in corporate event coordination, operations, and project coordination. She is a UVic grad with a Bachelor of Arts, Political Science and Minor in Public Administration.

Justin Otteson

Justin Otteson

Communications Lead

Justin is a communications specialist and instructional designer currently living on the unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations (Vancouver, BC). Justin serves as a Senior Communications Coordinator with the BC SUPPORT Unit, overseeing communications for all of the Unit’s areas, including the Methods Clusters. Justin is passionate about creating engaging communications and learning solutions that are impactful, inclusive, and accessible to all.

Michelle Weidema

Michelle Weidema

Administrative Assistant

Michelle has several years of administration experience in various sectors including government and healthcare. She was more recently an assistant at the BC Crown Corporation, ICBC, in the high-risk department supporting cases that included catastrophic motor vehicle accidents. Most notably, she was the Administration Manager working on the Southeast False Creek & Olympic Village Project at the City of Vancouver which was a very challenging, time-line driven yet rewarding large-scale project. During the 2016 Olympic Games, Michelle was an Administrative Lead who worked in the Protocol Centre which was a Partner with many tiers of all Canadian governments and neighbouring municipalities.