As we welcome one cohort of students to the program, we say goodbye to another. Last week, the University of Toronto had its Fall Convocation, recognizing the accomplishments of its graduates. We had several graduates come together on this overcast November Tuesday, to celebrate and reflect on their time at the Translational Research Program.
Julia Antolovich, Razan Bouzieneddine, Craig Madho and Kathleen Mounce were among the TRP alumni at convocation. They worked on their capstone project entitled ICONS, Improving Cancer Outpatient Nutrition Status. Their research examined why the current tools and resources to improve nutrition in cancer outpatients weren’t working. From this, they identified barriers to be addressed in redesigning current initiatives. You can read more about their project here.
Catherine and Haley were also at the fall convocation. Their capstone project, Fall Risk Assessment at a Geriatric Rehab Hospital, sought to evaluate the current methods of fall risk assessment being used and how they can be improved. You can read more about their project here.
Also at the ceremony was Kate Kazlovich, representing her capstone team: Invasive Placentation. With team members Connor Janeteas, and Dr. Julia Kfouri, they understood invasive placentation as a medically and surgically complex condition, and recognized the opportunity to improve the sharing of knowledge between physicians in the medical community. For their capstone project, the team created a 3D printed simulation of invasive placentation that could be used to facilitate training of physicians on the intricacies of interventions. You can read more about their project here.
Dr. Joana Dos Santos was also there to represent her capstone team: Refractory Incontinence in Children: Is There Hope? With team members Dr. Reza Vali and Edyta Marcon, they sought to understand what treatment options patients and parents were interested in, and to learn what it takes to bring a treatment used in adults to the paediatric setting. Their final milestone was the initiation of a pilot project at SickKids to test the efficacy of an adult treatment in children. You can read more about their project here.
We at the TRP are proud of the hard work that our students put into these projects and all they learned along the way. Over two years, the faculty has seen these students grow, in their thinking, their skillset, and their passion to fostering an innovative healthcare system. We offer our sincere congratulations to all our alumni who’ve graduated this year. We’re excited to see you move forward as Translational Researchers and follow the amazing work you’ll spearhead.
Where our 2018 graduates are now:
|Ahlexxi Jelen: Laboratory Manager, The Hospital for Sick Children; Co-Founder HIIO
|Catherine Rivers: Project Coordinator, Think Research
|Connor Janeteas: Medical Applications Specialist, Cimetrix Solutions Inc.
|Craig Madho: Research Analyst, OpenLabs; Knowledge Broker, NICE
|Edyta Marcon: Senior Research Associate, Donnelly Centre, University of Toronto; Course Instructor, Translational Research Program, University of Toronto
|Hayley Roher: Health Data Analyst, Ontario Internship Program MOHLTC
|Joana Dos Santos: Medical Urologist Urology, The Hospital for Sick Children; Assistant Professor, Department of Paediatrics, University of Toronto
|Julia Antolovich: Project Assistant, Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, Sinai Health System
|Julia Kfouri: Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist, Sinai Health System, Assistant Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto
|Kate Kazlovich: Junior Creative Innovation Associate, INVIVO Communications Inc.
|Kathleen Mounce: Field Case Manager, AmerisourceBergen
|Marcos Silva: Staff Anesthesiologist, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre; Lecturer, Department of Anesthesia, University of Toronto; Medical Director, Pediatric Advance Life Support (PALS), The Michener Institute
|Megan Lofft: pursuing opportunities that will combine her experience in the fitness industry with health research, education and translational research skills.
|Razan Bouzeineddine: pursuing further studies in health services research
|Robby Spring: Laboratory Manager, Baycrest; Co-Founder HIIO
|Vaishnavi Batmanabane: Clinical Research Project Coordinator, The Hospital for Sick Children
Interested in hearing about the TRP from one of our alumni? Craig Madho wrote a blog post on what drew him to the program and what he learned along the way, that you can find here.
Written By: Dr. Gabriella Chan
Is my information safe?
Do you remember every account you’ve ever created or every point of contact you’ve made online that required your personal email address or your mother’s maiden name to receive a “free” product? Probably not. The reality is that we don’t have any idea what kind of personal information about us is floating on the web, who has it, and what they can do with it. We either place our blind trust in these organizations to keep our information secure, or worse yet, we don’t even give it a second thought – until a data breach is publicized through the media.
Perhaps the companies in the health sector might be a slight exception. We tend to be more aware of the implications of having our personal health information fall into the wrong hands, so we have higher expectations that custodians of our health information safeguard it accordingly. Privacy regulation of personal health information is a provincial matter. In Ontario, the Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA) sets the rules around the collection, use and disclosure of individuals’ personal health information.
On a broader scale, to ensure adequate measures are taken to protect Canadians’ personal information, there is legislation in place. The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) provides the privacy legislation framework for Canadian organizations in the private sector. PIPEDA requires organizations to protect the personal information they’ve collected about an identifiable individual. Ontario’s PHIPA has been declared substantially similar to PIPEDA.
On November 1st 2018, an amendment to PIPEDA came into effect that imposes certain obligations on organizations that experience a breach of the security protecting personal information in their custody. This amendment requires three points of action:
- Reporting the breach to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner
- Notifying individuals and other organizations affected by the breach
- Maintaining accurate records of every data breach
These added requirements reflect Canada’s respect for the privacy of personal information. Organizations will have to implement or update their handling practices to ensure compliance with the new legislation.
You can read my full post on what these changes mean for you, here. This is a comprehensive overview explaining what a breach of data is, when to report it, how to follow the notification obligations, and the requirements on record-keeping.
‘Knowledge Translation’ can take many forms, and local Ottawa documentary film makers Ed Kucerak and Dr. Danielle Rolfe have taken their craft to the next level with the recent world premiere of Blue Roses – an often difficult but endearing look at end-of-life care in the shadows of ‘traditional’ society.
Blue Roses headlined the Saturday program of the 29th edition of the One World Film Festival, the National Capital Region’s longest-running documentary film festival raising awareness on social justice, human rights and environmental issues. The film makers accompanied the hospice palliative care outreach team of Mission Hospice in Ottawa, with their unobtrusive camera documenting acts of resilience and a community finding strength in its members to bring care to those often suffering in silence.
Getting health and social care is a challenge for people living in rooming houses, who often face poverty, mental illness and addictions at the best of times – but these individuals are often completely invisible to the people who typically provide palliative and end-of-life care. As part of outreach activities, the Ottawa Mission, a champion of care for the homeless and marginally housed since 2001, provides all aspects of health and spiritual care, and works with several partner agencies in the National Capital Region to meet the needs of all patients. Their presence strengthens the community and brings meaning and dignity to people who may otherwise be forgotten.
Utilizing the power of the medium of film, the documentary provides a voice to patients and community members, highlighting the need to include lived experience into evidence-based decision-making/patient-centred care. The powerful shots showcase the size and depth of the issue – but also paint a hopeful and inspiring picture of the power of human contact and interaction in the face of obstacles (such as access to pain medication).
Received with a standing ovation at its premiere, the documentary deserves a broad audience – and will hopefully be picked up by mainstream distributors for TV and program cinema. In the words of an audience member: “Everyone deserves dignity – and society will continue to be judged by how it treats its poor and homeless.”
An abbreviated version of the documentary will be shown as part of the National Initiative for the Care of the Elderly’s (NICE) Reel Aging series in collaboration with the University of Toronto’s Institute for Life Course and Aging at the Bahen Auditorium (40 St. George Street, Room 1170) on Wednesday, November 21, 2018 from 6:30 PM.
World Hospice and Palliative Care Day was on October 13th. This year’s theme was Palliative Care – Because I Matter!, providing the perfect opportunity to reflect and start thinking about your own values and (care) needs. You can find further information on advance care planning here.
Disclaimer: The author is a member of One World Arts, Box Office Co-lead for the One World Film Festival and chairs the End-of-Life Issues Theme Team for the NICE, a knowledge translation network dedicated to enhancing the care of older adults in Canada and abroad.
Written by: Christopher A. Klinger, PhD
Credit: Feature image was edited from a photo by Alexandru Acea on Unsplash.
“One year of TRP done! It’s been busy and eye-opening.”
Meet Kathleen Camaya, a registered nurse (RN) in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at the Hospital for Sick Children. She’s been working at SickKids for 9 years and is entering her second year in the Translational Research Program (TRP) at the University of Toronto.
Now that you’ve completed your first year, what are your thoughts?
“From day one, Rich (TRP Instructor) and Joseph (TRP Director and Instructor) encouraged us to network and get out of our comfort zone. I feel like I finally got what they were talking about at the end of the year.”
Change doesn’t happen in isolation, and the TRP encourages students to cross between the silos of healthcare to form meaningful connections that can lead to interdisciplinary collaborations. The program aims to not only instruct, but inspire students to drive change in their communities.
What drew you to this program?
“I didn’t want a theory-based program. I wanted something hands on and TRP sounded like a program that was unique and forward thinking. I liked that it was open to various fields in health care with a focus on the patient or end user.”
The TRP is more than just courses or projects, it will change the way you think about health-related problems and gaps. This two-year, course-based professional degree is designed for highly motivated students of diverse professional and academic backgrounds to advance problem-solving designs in medical and health science contexts. Through flexible coursework and hands-on leadership experience, students are provided with analytical tools and frameworks to help build professional translational researcher skills.
What was a memorable experience from your first year?
“Throughout the year, we had many discussants speak in the Foundations in Translational Research course about a variety of topics spanning the pathway from bench to bedside and influences on the stages of research.”
Among the first year courses, the MSC1000: Foundations in Translational Research course aims to provide students with a high-level perspective of the research, discover, translation and commercialization landscape by fostering discussions with guest speakers who have real-world experience in these areas.
“One of the guest speakers that inspired me was UHN’s OpenLabs, a design and innovation shop dedicated to finding creative solutions to problems in health care. I was very interested in their approach to health care barriers and the public rounds they held every Tuesday. Following that class, I attended an OpenLabs rounds and met Adeline Cohen, who was working on the Toronto Rehab Urban Farm project. I connected with her after rounds and through our conversation, I discovered our shared interests in nutrition and the need to improve nutritional education within health care.”
Kathleen, who had extensive experience at the bedside, was able to make a connection that fostered the opportunity to collaborate on a research project in an intersection of their passions.
“…we both share an interest in expanding green space in healthcare facilities. I expressed my interest in her Urban Farm project and she asked me if I’d like to help her out. I volunteered my time to help out with an extensive literature review for her paper. In acknowledgment of our collaboration, Adeline will put my name as one of the authors in her paper. This is the first paper that will have my name on it! Adeline has been awesome to collaborate with and I am happy to help her out with her project.”
Any final reflections on your first year?
“I wanted to thank both Rich and Joseph, for opening up great opportunities for TRP students. It is exciting for me to be able to network and meet people with similar interests and to work on a project together. Following their advice to network and collaborate has really paid off! At first, I was a little unsure of how to go about networking but attending sessions, such as Open Rounds, has helped me to gain confidence in collaborating with others.”
Kathleen’s experience is one of the many stories of TRP students embedding themselves in their community or reaching out beyond their niche to drive change. As Kathleen enters her second year, she’ll be able to draw on these lessons learned and apply her skills to her Capstone project and future directions.