The Team

Dr. Holly Mansell an Assistant Professor of Pharmacy at the University of Saskatchewan is the project lead/primary investigator. She maintains a practice site one day a week at the Saskatchewan Transplant Program as a clinical pharmacist. As Chair of the Canadian Society of Transplant (CST) Pharmacist Group, she has had the opportunity to connect with pharmacists involved in other transplanting centers across the country, providing insight on the need for improved pre-transplant education nationwide.
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Ms. Nicola Rosaasen is a Transplant Pharmacist at the Saskatchewan Transplant Program and project co-lead. Since 2002 she has played a pivotal role at the program, educating transplant recipients about their medications and working through the challenges of non-adherence in transplant recipients. Her involvement in the Transplant Patient Family Advisory Council have helped to provide the inspiration for this project.

Dr. Rahul Mainra is a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine in the College of Medicine, at the University of Saskatchewan. He has been working as a staff transplant nephrologist since 2006 and is actively involved within the Saskatchewan Transplant Program, managing patients in the assessment phase and following transplantation.

Mr. Azaad Kukha-Bryson (AKB Productions) is the video producer for this project. Azaad has pursued a passion for photography and videography for over a decade and has developed skills in video production including scriptwriting, video and audio equipment operation, visual effects design, and post-production techniques, through both self-directed research and formal training courses. His experience as a licensed pharmacist is an additional bonus.

Dr. Ahmed Shoker is a Professor of Medicine at the College of Medicine from the University of Saskatchewan. He is also the Medical Director of the Saskatchewan Transplant Program. His many years as a transplant nephrologist have provided him with much insight on the prevalence and impact of non-adherence in this population.

Dr. David Blackburn is a Professor of Pharmacy and research chair in Patient Adherence to Drug Therapy at the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan. He is also the Director of the Saskatchewan Drug Utilization and Outcomes Research Team (SDUORT). He has extensive experience in the use of Saskatchewan’s health-administrative databases for studying the use of prescriptions and their influence on health outcomes.

Dr. Jay Wilson is an Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Curriculum Studies in the College of Education at the University of Saskatchewan. Jay has taught video production and instructional design for the past ten years, and his program of research centers on technology skill development in educators, experiential learning, and design studio learning environments. He has managed his own video production company since 1993 and has produced video content for a broad range of business, industry, and education partners.

Mr. Paraag Trivedi graduated with his Bachelor of Science of Pharmacy from the University of Saskatchewan in 2016. During his third year as a pharmacy student, he joined the project as a summer research student. Receiving a kidney transplant eleven years ago, his perspective as both a patient and student have provided great insight on this project.

Ms. Victoria Nhin is the animator for this project. She received her Bachelor of Science Degrees of Fine Arts in 3D Animation, Multimedia, and Drawing at the University of Colorado at Denver, and has vast experience creating animations and graphics for medical, educational, litigation, marketing, and sports entertainment. Victoria was a medical animator for over ten years and enjoys creating animations to help people understand complex medical procedures.

Ms. Michele Hoffert is a Registered Social Worker with the Saskatchewan Transplant Program in Regina. She also works with the Chronic Kidney Disease and Home Therapies Programs at the Kidney Health Centre. She has a passion for transplant, as a donor family member, and a strong commitment to patient care. Her previous experience in Mental Health and more recent role within the Renal Programs allows for valuable collaboration on this research project. She joins this team to bring a social work perspective to patient education and care.

Ms. Leah Biegler is a Registered Social Worker with the Saskatchewan Transplant Program in Regina.  She also works with the Chronic Kidney Disease and Home Therapies Programs at the Kidney Health Centre.  Leah has been a Social Worker with the Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region since 1992 in both acute and clinical areas.  Leah is a compassionate advocate for patients and strives to ensure that patients are informed and supported through their healthcare journey.

Mr. Patrick Head is a kidney transplant recipient and is from Kinistino. He received his transplant in 2017. He has been instrumental in developing our process for rural participants without internet access, and we have worked with his local nursing station to figure out an alternate process for video and survey dissemination.

Ms. Errin Willenborg received a kidney transplant recipient in February of 2016. She currently manages a research program funded by canola producers in the province of Saskatchewan. Errin is actively involved with the Saskatchewan branch of the Kidney Foundation of Canada as a peer-support volunteer. She was also featured as a key note speaker at the annual Fright Night fundraiser and was awarded highest fundraiser for the 2017 Saskatoon Kidney Walk.

Mr. Gerald Chartier is from Buffalo Narrows. He received a kidney transplant in 2017. Prior to this he was on dialysis, and had to make more than 500 trips to and from North Battleford while waiting for transplant – a 4-hour drive from Buffalo Narrows. Gerald’s insight has been particularly valuable for developing a plan to reach our patients in rural and Northern Saskatchewan, and for those who are not regular users of the internet.

Ms. Jenny Wichart is a Pharmacy Clinical Practice Leader for Solid Organ Transplant and Nephrology in Calgary, Alberta. She maintains a clinical practice in the Paediatric Nephrology and Transplant Clinics at Alberta Children’s Hospital. Jenny has been actively involved in various roles within the Canadian Society of Transplantation and is also the current Chair of the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists Transplant Pharmacy Specialty Network.

Dr. Patricia West-Thielke is the Director of Clinical Transplant Research and Research Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System. She has been the principal investigator for over 30 kidney transplant clinical trials and manages a clinical trials unit. She is actively involved with the transplant program educating patients in both the pre- and post-transplant phases. Her areas of research include adherence, pharmacokinetics, and sensitization.

Dr. Christopher Daley is the Director of Clinical Research at the Multi-Organ Transplant Program, in Halifax Nova Scotia. He is also the Clinical Pharmacy Coordinator, providing support and direction for the clinical pharmacy related efforts of the program, and maintaining a clinical practice with direct patient care. Chris has been actively involved in the Canadian Society of Transplant for several years and currently is the Past-Chair of the Pharmacist’s Group.

Dr. Juxin Liu is a Professor of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics in the College of Arts and Science at the University of Saskatchewan. In general, the nature of her research is to develop statistical methods to solve real world problems. In particular, her recent research work mainly focuses on latent variable modelling schemes for imperfect data (such as measurement error, misclassification, and missing data).

Dr. Maya Obadia is a MINT certified Motivational Interviewing trainer and facilitator. Her background is in training practitioners to adopt motivational interviewing to facilitate the behaviour change process for their patients. Her research areas include adherence to self management strategies from health behaviour change and medication adherence. Her PhD training was completed at the University of Toronto, Institute of Medical Science at the Hospital for Sick Children. She is currently working within the Department of Supportive Care at Princess Margaret UHN in Toronto.

Other Contributers: 

  • Dr. Jeff Taylor (survey design)
  • Dr. Gail Mackay (Indigenous perspective)
  • Raj Padmanabh (video editor)
  • Landon Doucette (sound technician)
  • Roger Trottier (illustration concept)
  • Jacey Jones (literature search)
  • Carrie Larson, Shirin Aladwan, Carrie Nagel (research assistants)

Sponsors:

  • Astellas Pharma Canada, Inc.
  • College of Pharmacy & Nutrition Summer Student Research Award
  • Summer Student Works, Government of Saskatchewan
  • Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF)
  • Saskatchewan Centre for Patient-Oriented Research (SCPOR)
  • American Society of Transplantation, Transplantation and Immunology Research Network (TIRN)

Thank you:

  • Sanjay Bakshi (U of S alumni BSc’92, MSc’94) for the excellent advice and direction you provided to the creative team.
  • To all of the patients and staff that have shared their time and their personal stories. You are the inspiration for this project!
  • To Dr. Kerry Alcorn & ninth grade students at Aden Bowman, health care providers, and patients Thank you for providing thoughtful and constructive reviews of the videos!