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Colleen M. Astle, MN, RN, C Neph (C), NP Dialysis Access, Grey Nuns Hospital, Edmonton, AB

 

Colleen Astle is a Nurse Practitioner employed by Alberta Health Services, working out of the GNH. Colleen has been working in dialysis for a number of years in various capacities: as an Education twice, staff nurse, plasmapheresis and as an NP since 2004. Her focus is dialysis access. She prepares the renal patients for access including peritoneal and av accesses. Colleen works with 7 Access Coordinators and 7 Vascular Surgeons.

 

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    Brandon Beaudry, CET, Manager, Clinical Engineering COV/AHS Renal Support, Alberta Health Services

     

    Brandon Beaudry has been the Manager of Clinical Engineering for the Renal dialysis team for 7 years in Edmonton Alberta. He started his career with a private Biomedical company called Innovex where he became the manager of the Northern Alberta region. Brandon moved from Edmonton to the to the Children’s Hospital in Calgary in 1994 working as a Biomedical technologist just as the Regional Hospital associations were being formed in Alberta. He then took a position with the University of Alberta Hospital in 1996 and has worked for Alberta Health Services for the last 23 years. During that time Brandon has supported Alberta Health Care as a Biomedical Technologist, I.T. Lead for Clinical Engineering, and Provincial Project Coordinator with the Centre Of Expertise for Alberta before settling in to his present management role. Brandon now manages a team of 16 staff members supporting 18 Satellite Dialysis units and 85 – 90 home patients for Alberta Kidney Care- North. Brandon also manages an additional 13 staff for the Covenant Health Clinical Engineering Department that supports an additional 7 Covenant Facilities and 6 Capital Care Facilities across the Edmonton Region.

     

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    Eleanor Benterud, RN, MN, Senior Project Coordinator, Division of Nephrology, University of Calgary

     

    Eleanor Benterud, RN, MN is a Senior Project Coordinator in the Division of Nephrology, at the University of Calgary focusing on acute kidney injury research. Eleanor’s’ clinical nursing background includes Critical Care, Perioperative Nursing, and Primary Care. It is her nursing career that has allowed her many opportunities in population health, teaching, management, project management and voluntary pursuits. She has been a contributor for the National RN exam guide, a reviewer for the Canadian NCLEX prep guide as well as a former member of CARNA’s hearing tribunal. Eleanor is married to her best friend Ken and has two fabulous boys. If she is not working or being “Mom” you can find her planning themed parties, kitesurfing, playing the piano, or traveling.

     

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    Lori Berard, RN, CDE, Nurse Consultant, Diabetes Management and Clinical Trial Operations Winnipeg MB

     

    Lori Berard is Diabetes Educator with an expertise in diabetes education, management and clinical research. She has over 30 years’ experience primarily as the Nurse Manager for the Health Sciences Centre Diabetes Research Program ans a Faculty Member at the University of Manitoba Department of Medicine Section of Endocrinology. Currently she is working as a consultant in diabetes management and clinical research operations. Lori has been a professional member and major volunteer of Diabetes Canada for more than 25 years and has extensive experience with the Clinical Practice Guidelines. She has received many honors and awards related to her work in diabetes.

     

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    Paulina Bleah, MN, NP-PHC – Department of Nephrology, University Health Network, Toronto, ON

     

    Paulina Bleah is a nurse practitioner at Toronto General Hospital in the in-patient nephrology unit and out-patient hemodialysis unit. Paulina’s nursing career began as a staff nurse on general internal medicine. A few years into her role at the bedside, she went back to school and completed her master of nursing and nurse practitioner certificate, after which she landed her current role as a nephrology nurse practitioner. Paulina wears different hats in her current role, including a clinician, a leader and an educator. Paulina is passionate about chronic disease management and enjoys the difference that her role makes in the lives of patients living with chronic kidney disease.

     

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    Christopher Brookes, BSc, Hemodynamic Technologist – Department of Dialysis, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, QC

     

    Christopher Brookes has worked as a dialysis technician at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) for 33 years. His responsibilities include; repair and maintenance of all the dialysis equipment both hemodialysis and the Continuous Renal Replacement Therapy (CRRT) equipment used in the ICU setting.

    Christopher works as a resource person for all technological questions for the staff nurses. Along with Dr. Paul Barre and Roch Beauchemin, Chris was instrumental in developing the Hemodiafiltration (HDF) program at the Royal Victoria Hospital in the early 1990s which was presented at the CANNT conference in 1993 in Halifax. Chris and Roch, incidentally, won the CANNT award of excellence that year.

    In his spare time Chris enjoys, music, photography and is active in with the community theatre in St, Bruno Quebec.

     

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    Emily A. Christie, Division of Nephrology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB

     

    Emily Christie graduated from the University of Calgary medical school, followed by internal medicine and nephrology residency training at the University of Alberta. Following this, she completed a fellowship in Renal Transplantation through the Alberta Transplant Institute at the University of Alberta. She started as a staff nephrologist at the University of Alberta Hospital in January 2018, and is strongly interested in the assessment of patients with chronic kidney disease for renal transplantation.

     

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    Bonnie Corradetti, BN, MEd, Patient Advisor, Kidney Health SCN

     

    Bonnie Corradetti, BN MEd – has a twenty year history of renal disease and ten years on various modalities of kidney dialysis. In December, 2015 she was fortunate to receive a deceased donor kidney transplant and has been healthy since that time. While on dialysis, especially in-center hemodialysis, she struggled with feeling powerless and disengaged. Her career background is nursing and since retirement has worked as a patient advisor in the Kidney Health SCN and several kidney health committees and research projects to help influence improvements in the lives of patients living with kidney disease.

     

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    Maoliosa (Mo) Donald, PhD Candidate, BScPT, Senior Research Associate, Baay Chair in Kidney Disease, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary

     

    Maoliosa Donald is a Senior Research Associate in the Division of Nephrology, University of Calgary. Her research focuses on using pragmatic research approaches to identify strategies to improve person-centered care for individuals with chronic kidney disease. She is interested in bridging the gap between evidence and practice, focusing on features that lead to successful adoption and sustainability of interventions in order to maximize effective outcomes important to patients.

     

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    Christina Doré, , RN, PhD , University of New Brunswick, Canada; Professor, Faculty of Nursing, University of Quebec in Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Mont-Laurier, QC

     

    Christina Doré has four published articles and one article submitted for publication and plans scientific communications in Canada and internationally during the year in connection with her doctoral project on the assessment of burnout and empowerment of nurses in hemodialysis and the development of a future professional website aimed at promoting their empowerment and well-being at work in order to reduce their risk of burnout. She has nearly 28 years of practice; as a Clinical Nurse in Hemodialysis, Predialysis, Critical Care, Medicine, Surgery, Oncology, Geriatrics and Community Health, as well as a Nursing Practice Consultant to optimize nursing and interdisciplinary practices. She is also a member of professional committees for the development of nursing practice as well as research.

     

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    Sharon Fairclough, Clinical Educator, NxStage Medical Inc.

     

    As a member of the NxStage Clinical Educator (CE) Team and a nephrology nurse for over 30 years, Sharon has worked to increase the awareness of home therapies to both patients and staff, drive clinical practice efficiencies and effectiveness as it relates to the care and management of home therapy patients while increasing the knowledge of others in renal programs across Canada. Sharon’s strong renal clinical knowledge and skills have supported her success in both the public and private healthcare sectors.

     

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    Olusegun (Segun) Famure, MPH, MEd, CHE, Multi-Organ Transplant Program, University Health Network, Toronto, ON

     

    Segun Famure is the manager for new knowledge and innovation in the kidney transplant program, University Health Network, Toronto ON. He is also the co-Director of the Multi-Organ Transplant Student Research Training Program (MOTSRTP) at the same institution. In addition to the advances degrees he has obtained in both the field of public health and education, he holds a Certified Health Executive (CHE) designation from the Canadian College of Health Services Executives. He is also a past recipient of the Health Services and Policy Research Training Award from Ontario Training Centre. His research interests lie in areas of health curriculum development, chronic care delivery modeling, health program evaluations and quality of life assessments.

     

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    Natalie Ferraro, RN, Kidney Care Clinical Manager, SCH Hemodialysis Unit, Niagara Health System, St. Catharines, ON

     

    Natalie Ferraro is the Clinical Manager for the St Catharines Hemodialysis Unit at Niagara Health. Previously, she was the Clinical Leader at McMaster Children’s Hospital for Inpatient and Ambulatory Services. She has a background in Emergency Services and Critical Care. Natalie specializes in Continuous Quality Improvement and Lean Methodology, with a passion for patient safety.

     

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    Danielle Fox, BN, RN, Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB

     

    Danielle Fox is a Clinical Nurse Educator for the Peritoneal Dialysis and Kidney Care Clinics for Alberta Kidney Care-South. She holds a Bachelor of Nursing Degree from the University of Lethbridge and is currently enrolled in the Master of Nursing Program at the University of Calgary. The research that Danielle is conducting for her master’s thesis pertains directly to the challenges encountered by patients and families who have opted to undertake peritoneal dialysis at home. In particular, she is exploring the reasons why patients transfer out of peritoneal dialysis and how patients and their families can be better supported.

     

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    Iwona Gabrys, BKin, ACSM-CCEP, CSEP-CEP, Clinical Kinesiologist, Alberta Kidney Care North, Alberta Health Services, Edmonton, AB

     

    Iwona is a Clinical Kinesiologist with Alberta Kidney Care-North. She completed her Kinesiology degree at the University of Alberta and holds a specialization with the American College of Sports Medicine as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist. She is an active member of the Western Canadian Renal Kinesiologists group and the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology. She has a passion for exercise prescription and physiology, the role of intradialytic exercise in dialysis symptom management, improvement of mobility and function, and chronic disease management. She is interested in optimizing patients’ quality of life.

     

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    Clay Gillrie, BRN, BScN, MSN – Senior Program Manager – Living Donation and Transplantation, Canadian Blood Services (CBS)

     

    Clay has been a senior program manager at CBS for three and a half years. Initially working in deceased donation for 2 years, during which time he lead several national leading practice initiatives including organ donation in the conscious competent patient, updating the deceased donor management guidelines, and implementation of the pediatric DCD guidelines. In his current role, Clay is working on several national leading practice initiatives focused on increasing living kidney donation. In addition, Clay oversees the operation of the Kidney Paired Donation (KPD) registry and program. Clay has worked in health care for 27 years with a back ground in critical care, education and in management, including managing one of the busiest living donor programs in Canada. Currently his work focuses on innovation and strategic thinking to influence national policy to increase living kidney donation and ultimately improve quality of life for individuals awaiting kidney transplant.

     

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    Andrea GoertzenBN, RN, CNeph(C), MB

     

    In October 2018 a group of Canadian dialysis nurse leaders got together with the help and support of NxStage (a dialysis company that these nurse leaders are using within their respective programs), to discuss ways of improving home dialysis. This group is called SignHD- Special Interest Group of Nurses in Home Dialysis (SIGNhd). This group is made up of the following nurse leaders:

    • Ethel Macatangay – Ontario, Canada
    • Andrea Goertzen-Manitoba, Canada
    • Angela Robinson- British Columbia, Canada
    • Sharon McDonald-Newfoundland, Canada

    As dedicated leaders committed to improving home dialysis care delivery, coming together to share experiences, thoughts, innovative ideas as means of making changes and improvements to their respective programs throughout Canada, and making a difference in the lives of the patients and their families is what motivates this group.

     

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    Tracy Gower, P.Dt, Nova Scotia Authority Renal Program

     

    Tracy Gower has been a Renal Dietitian with the Nova Scotia Health Authority for over eight years. Earlier in her career, she worked in The Gambia, West Africa as a community Health Educator, and spent five years at Southmead Hospital in Bristol, England as an Inpatient Renal Dietitian.

    During her time in the UK, was she published in the Journal of Renal Nutrition and EDTNA/ERCA for her work in Nutrition Screening.

    Currently, Tracy is working with patients receiving Hemodialysis, Peritoneal dialysis and Transplantation.

    She is the Chair of the Bone and Mineral Metabolism committee and has developed a particular interest in this area.

     

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    Danielle House, RN, CNeph(C), Peritoneal Dialysis Unit, Peterborough Regional Health Centre, Peterborough, ON

     

    Danielle House graduated nursing in 2000 from Sir Sandford Fleming College. Danielle has 14 years experience in Nephrology within the Peterborough Regional Renal Unit. She holds an extended Nephrology certification with the Canadian Nurses Association and has extensive knowledge with educating the adult learner. Over the past year the Peterborough Regional Health Centre has implemented a two way, web based remote monitoring system to improve safety and increase compliance in the Peritoneal Dialysis Patient.

     

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    Natalie D. Ilkiw, MBA, BScKin, Kidney Health Strategic Clinical Network, Alberta Health Services, Calgary AB

     

    Natalie Ilkiw is a Program Manager for Change Management at WestJet. Prior to this role, she was the Quality Improvement Consultant for the Kidney Health Strategic Clinical Network where she applied her background in clinical experience, research, and program development to contribute to quality improvement initiatives throughout Alberta Kidney Care South (AKCS). Natalie has worked as a kinesiologist with the Primary Care Network, Alberta Healthy Living Program, and AKCS to improve patient quality of life through activity. Natalie obtained her undergraduate degree in Kinesiology at the University of Alberta and MBA from Queen’s University.

     

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    Rita Iradukunda, BScN, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB

     

    My name is Rita Iradukunda, and I am a 4th year Nursing student at the University of Alberta. In 2016, I started volunteering for Dr. Kara Schick Makaroff’s research in the faculty of nursing. As part of my undergraduate honors requirement, I had to complete a research project. Thus, in 2017 I began my honors research project where my objective was to explore and understand how home dialysis patients would like their patient-reported outcome (PRO) data to be used after being collected in clinics.

    In addition to my honors project, I also work as a research assistant for Dr. Makaroff’s research team. This experience continues to add significant experience to research experiences. On the side, I am part of our Nursing Undergraduate Association (NUA). On this group, I am the Canadian Nursing Student Association (CNSA) official delegate, where I act as a representative of all the undergraduate nursing students of our local chapter at the CNSA level.

     

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    Margie Kensah, RN, CNeph(C), PD Clinical Consultant, Baxter Healthcare Canada

     

    • Graduated from Royal Alexandra Hospital School of Nursing 1991
    • CNeph(C) since 2014
    • BCIT – NSNN 7420 – PD Self Care Management
    • Worked as a staff nurse in Gerontology, Oncology and Nephrology
    • PCC in Community HD Unit
    • Project lead in Providing PD Education for staff
    • Employed with Baxter Corporation since 2017 as a PD Clinical Consultant for BC

     

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    Rebecca Law, BScN, RN, CNeph(C) – Clinical Practice Leader, Scarborough Health Network, Scarborough, ON

     

    Rebecca Law is a registered nurse with a certification in Nephrology Nursing from the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA). She graduated from Ryerson University in 2010 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing and is currently pursuing a combined Master’s in Nursing and Nurse Practitioner certificate.

    Rebecca served as the Home Dialysis Coordinator at Humber River Hospital, between 2017-2019, where her clinical expertise in peritoneal dialysis, quality improvement and data analytics have resulted in a number of quality improvement initiative throughout the home dialysis program.

    In pursuit of her passion for nursing education, she recently accepted a position with Scarborough Health Network (SHN) as the Clinical Practice Leader for in-centre Hemodialyisis; providing Nephrology education and support to staff at 5 different sites and continuing her work with quality improvement in Renal Care.

     

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    Julie Ann Lawrence,MScN, RN(EC), CNeph(C), Nurse Practitioner, Renal Program, Kidney Care Centre, London Health Sciences Centre, London, ON

     

    Julie Ann Lawrence is a Nurse Practitioner at London Health Sciences, London, Ontario since 1997. While being in this role over two decades, the landscape of the health care environment has changed greatly, while many patient/family needs have not changed. That is, there is value in seeing each person as an individual who has rights, values, and choices. Julie Ann prides herself in being authentically present with patients and at times, this requires a deep dive into skills of emotional intelligence. Authentically showing up to give service to her clients and engage in collaborative relationships with her colleagues in order to improve patient outcomes, requires not only intellectual horse power and clinical acumen, but a skill in balancing the uniqueness of our intimate interplay with people’s lives. As such, her greatest skill was learned by being the mother of 4 boys. This life experience has provided her with the tools of resilience, humour and curiosity that translates into patience and contentment while attempting to be her best in the everyday.

     

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    Stephanie Lord, Alberta Kidney Care – North, University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, AB.

     

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    Jason Maahs, Water Operations Manager, Baxter, Mississauga, ON

     

    Jason Maahs is a Water Operation Manger for Baxter, where Jason is responsible for the sales and designs for central water purification system for kidney dialysis. Jason has been working in the renal dialysis field and has been responsible for the installation of over 200 water systems in Canada.

    Since 2005 Jason has been a volunteered with CSA committee Z259 Kidney Dialysis and a member of the CSA Health Care Strategic Steering Committee. He has been involved with the creation of ‘Z364.6 Quality management for kidney dialysis providers’, ‘Z364.5 Safe installation and operation of hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis in a home setting’, ‘Z364.2.1 Monitoring systems for hemodialysis equipment’ and the adoption of the series of 5 standard ‘Z23500 Guidance for the preparation and quality management of fluids for hemodialysis and related therapies’.

     

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    Susan L. Martin,RD, B.H.Ecol(Hons), University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, AB

     

    Susan Martin is Registered Dietitian with the Renal Transplant Program at the University of Alberta Hospital. After graduating with honours from the University of Manitoba in 2002, Susan completed her post-grad internship with Capital Health in Edmonton, followed by a renal dietetic residency program. Susan has worked as a renal dietitian for the past sixteen years, in various locations including the Red Deer Regional Hospital, Orillia Soldier’s Memorial Hospital, The Barrie Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre and currently continues to work in the Renal Transplant Program in Edmonton. In the Renal Transplant Program, Susan has developed a Vitamin D protocol as well as belonging to various working groups developing provincial nutrition practice guidelines for renal transplant patients as well as standardized provincial education resources. In addition, Susan has worked with the Canadian Diabetes Association in developing resources for patients with chronic kidney disease and diabetes, including co-authoring a chapter in Beyond the Basics. Susan is also an author for the PEN (Practice-based Evidence in Nutrition) knowledge pathway for Nephrology and Renal Transplant. The PEN service is governed by a collaborative partnership comprised of the British Dietetic Association, the Dietitians Association of Australia and Dietitians of Canada (DC).

     

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    Sharon McDonald, BN, RN, CMSN(C), CNeph(C), NL

     

    In October 2018 a group of Canadian dialysis nurse leaders got together with the help and support of NxStage (a dialysis company that these nurse leaders are using within their respective programs), to discuss ways of improving home dialysis. This group is called SignHD- Special Interest Group of Nurses in Home Dialysis (SIGNhd). This group is made up of the following nurse leaders:

    • Ethel Macatangay – Ontario, Canada
    • Andrea Goertzen-Manitoba, Canada
    • Angela Robinson- British Columbia, Canada
    • Sharon McDonald-Newfoundland, Canada

    As dedicated leaders committed to improving home dialysis care delivery, coming together to share experiences, thoughts, innovative ideas as means of making changes and improvements to their respective programs throughout Canada, and making a difference in the lives of the patients and their families is what motivates this group.

     

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    Primrose Mharapara, MScN, NP-PHC, CNeph(C) – Department of Nephrology, University Health Network

     

    Primrose Mharapara is a nurse practitioner, in incentre hemodialysis at UHN at the Toronto general hospital site. She is a graduate of York University in the MScN-PHCNP, as well as, a graduate of the Michener Institute in the diabetes educator certificate program and recently attained the University of Toronto collaborative change leadership certificate. After graduating with a BScN from York University she began her nursing career at North York General in ICU/CCU as a staff nurse were she trained to be a SLED (Sustained Low Efficiency Dialysis) nurse. On her nursing career path, she has assumed numerous educational and leadership roles which include co-founder of the ICU/CCU education on the fly; a peer to peer teaching model at the bedside, and nephrology interprofessional education rounds at UHN. She also served as a Membership Liaison for the Canadian Association of Critical Care Nurses (CACCN) during her time at North York general. Occasionally, she evaluates internationally educated nurses as an OSCE examiner and writes entry to profession examinations for RN’s and a clinical course director with York University in the nursing program.

     

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    Dr. Nicholas Mitchell, Assistant Professor, the Department of Psychiatry, University of Alberta, Senior Medical Director of the Addiction and Mental Health Strategic Clinical Network, Provincial Medical Director, Addiction and Mental Health Provincial Team, Alberta Health Services, Edmonton, AB

     

    Nicholas Mitchell, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Alberta, and the Senior Medical Director of the Addiction and Mental Health Strategic Clinical Network and Provincial Medical Director for the Addiction and Mental Health Provincial Team within Alberta Health Services. In his roles with AHS he is involved in government and community stakeholder relations, policy, strategy, and research and innovation with a goal of improving the quality of healthcare for Albertans.

    His residency in psychiatry was completed at the University of Alberta in 2010, and he also obtained a Master of Science in Psychiatry with research focusing on the neurobiology of depression in the postpartum during his training.

    Dr. Mitchell is involved in the teaching and supervision of medical students, residents, and graduate students at the University of Alberta. He was previously the director of Continuing Professional Development in the Department of Psychiatry and coordinator for Adult Psychiatry Grand Rounds. He has served on a number of national committees including the Council of Psychiatric Continuing Education at the Canadian Psychiatric Association.

    Currently, Dr. Mitchell maintains an active clinical practice with the Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry service at the University of Alberta Hospital, focusing on the treatment of psychiatric disorders in the medically ill. Particular clinical interests include mental health issues in individuals undergoing solid organ transplantation.

     

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    Gina Ongjoco, BScN, RN,CNeph(C) – Baxter Healthcare

     

    Gina Ongjoco is a PD Clinical Consultant for Baxter. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree in the Philippines and nursing refresher course through Grant MacEwan University. She also has her certification in Nephrology.

    Gina has worked as a renal nurse since 2004. Now as a Peritoneal Dialysis Clinical Consultant she provides subject matter expertise to PD programs in Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. In 2018 she received the Baxter Clinical Excellence award.

    Gina volunteers at the Renal Community Kitchen in Calgary with her daughters Anika and Asia. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, being in nature, reading, learning and teaching.

     

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    Vlad Padure, MScN, NP-PHC – Clinical Manager, Humber River Hospital, Toronto, ON

     

    Vlad Padure is the manager of the Home Dialysis Program, Nephrology Clinics, Transitional Care and Satellite Dialysis Units at Humber River Hospital (HRH). With over a decade of clinical, leadership, and research experience, he is leading the quality improvement and service transformation initiatives in the nephrology program at HRH. Vlad completed his combined Master of Science in Nursing and Nurse Practitioner Certificate at Ryerson University in 2014, and is completing his Master of Business Administration at the University of Fredericton.

     

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    Archna Parikh, RN, SCH Hemodialysis Unit, Niagara Health System, St. Catharines, ON

     

    Archna Parikh is a Registered Nurse currently working in the Hemodialysis Unit at Niagara Health. Archna graduated from George Brown College and completed the Nephrology Nursing program from Humber College in 2003. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Ryerson University in 2016. Archna’s passion is providing compassionate care.

     

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    Shripal Parikh, AScT, cdt – Clinical Engineering, Alberta Health Services, Calgary, AB

     

    Shripal has been working as Dialysis Technologist for past 22 years, currently working at Alberta Health Services in Calgary serving home patient in southern Alberta. Shripal has been involved in past as VP-Technologist. He was actively involved in developing CANNT Technical Standards for the guidance of practicing dialysis techs. He is also currently sitting on the Canadian Board of Examiners for certification for biomedical and dialysis technologists. Shripal himself is a certified dialysis technologists and works continuously to promote and maintain high standards in the profession of dialysis technicians and technologists.

     

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    John Phaneuf,RD, B.H.Ecol(Hons), Regional Sales Manager, Charles River

     

    John Phaneuf graduated from Villanova University in Philadelphia, PA with a Bachelor degree in Arts & Sciences. He additionally studied Physics and Organic Chemistry at Tufts University and Bridgewater State University and began working in the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industry in 2000 with focus on allergy & immunology; cardiovascular disease; and later pain management. John started with Accugenix, Inc. in 2008 as a Product Specialist in microbial identifications and later joined Charles River Laboratories with their acquisition of Accugenix. He has 11 years of experience working with Researchers and Quality Control professionals to establish and support QC microbiology programs including bacterial endotoxin testing, sterility & bioburden, and environmental monitoring and microbial identification.

     

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    Lilla Ploszaj, BScN, RN, CNeph(C) – Clinical Resource Leader – Vascular Access, Scarborough Health Network, Toronto, ON

     

    I have been employed in the Scarborough Health Network for over 20 years and my work experience includes: Hemodialysis, Home Dialysis (including teaching patients and families Peritoneal Dialysis and Home Hemodialysis) and Clinical Resource Leader for Vascular Access for the past 11 years.

    My current responsibilities are related to staff development, patients and families education/engagement about hemodialysis accesses and development and implementation of practice protocols and policies and procedures related to the nephrology vascular access. Furthermore, I am involved with the implementation of the Best Practices for vascular access and Quality Improvement Provincial Projects related to catheter related bacteremia in hemodialysis.

     

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    Patricia A. Quinan, MN, RN, CNeph(C), Clinical Nurse Specialist/Vascular Access Coordinator, umber River Hospital, Toronto, ON

     

    I graduated in 1981 from Humber College nursing diploma program in Toronto and in 1983, I started working as a staff nurse in the hemodialysis unit at a large downtown teaching hospital. In 1998, after 15 years of nephrology experience, I wrote the Canadian Nursing Association (CNA) exam in Nephrology and became a CANNT member, which I have continued to maintain. Being a member of professional organizations provides me with an opportunity to network with other experts in the field, expand my knowledge and confidence to pursue further educational opportunities and leadership roles.

    Obtaining professional certification prompted me to return to university where I obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) in 2002 and I completed a Masters in Nursing (MN) with a focus on chronic illness in 2006. Over my 35-year nephrology career, I have been very fortunate to meet and work with many experts in the field and provide care to patients living with kidney disease. Returning to university helped me to achieve both professional and personal growth. I find that I am able to incorporate theoretical knowledge into my clinical practice and believe that I am a better nurse and clinician as a result. I am currently working as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in a large nephrology program at in Toronto, where I provide comprehensive vascular access care in collaboration with a multidisciplinary team.

     

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    Frances Reintjes, Alberta Kidney Care – North, University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, AB

     

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    Angela Robinson, RN, (CNeph(C), BC

     

    In October 2018 a group of Canadian dialysis nurse leaders got together with the help and support of NxStage (a dialysis company that these nurse leaders are using within their respective programs), to discuss ways of improving home dialysis. This group is called SignHD- Special Interest Group of Nurses in Home Dialysis (SIGNhd). This group is made up of the following nurse leaders:

    • Ethel Macatangay – Ontario, Canada
    • Andrea Goertzen-Manitoba, Canada
    • Angela Robinson- British Columbia, Canada
    • Sharon McDonald-Newfoundland, Canada

    As dedicated leaders committed to improving home dialysis care delivery, coming together to share experiences, thoughts, innovative ideas as means of making changes and improvements to their respective programs throughout Canada, and making a difference in the lives of the patients and their families is what motivates this group.

     

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    Simone Smeets, Vascular Access Clerk, Scarborough Health Network, Toronto, ON

     

    Simone Smeets has been working in Nephrology Program at the Scarborough Health Network in Toronto, Ontario for the past 23 years providing clerical support to dialysis and the vascular access team. She enjoys working closely with patients, their families and the team to help ensure their medical journey is as smooth as possible. She books and coordinates clinic appointments, radiology interventions and surgical procedures. She is also responsible for the department statistics.

     

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    Jennifer Tanasichuk , Clinical Applications Specialist, Chief Medical Supplies

     

    Jennifer Tanasichuk graduated from the Practical Nursing program with honors from Southeast Regional College in May 2010. After obtaining her dialysis training at the Regina General Hospital (April 2011), she then worked in hemodialysis at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Estevan, SK until December 2015. From there she worked in Yorkton Hemodialysis and remains a casual employee. She was recommended for the position of Clinical Applications Specialist by her predecessor in the position, Sascha Zieger, and was hired by Chief Medical Supplies in October of 2018. Since then she has focussed her time on getting to know the industry in more depth and attending many conferences and training programs to expand her knowledge of products and best practices. Currently she is taking classes towards her BScN through the University of Athabasca and hoping to continue with on focussing on nephrology and hemodialysis.

    Aside from work, Jennifer enjoys her duty as a mom and enjoys the simple things such as cooking, sewing and crafting. Her four kids ensure she is busy as she volunteers with the majority of their activities from soccer coach to hockey team manager to having a seat on the daycare board. When she does get a spare moment of adult time you can find her front row of any live music event.

     

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    Audrey Tassillo, RN, Regional Vascular Access Nurse, Kidney Care Program, Niagara Health System, St. Catharines, ON

     

    Audrey Tassillo is a Registered Nurse currently practicing as a Regional Vascular Access Nurse for the Kidney Care Program at Niagara Health. Audrey graduated from Niagara College in 1990. She has had clinical experience in Surgery, Allergy and Immunology, and clinical trials prior to commencing her 21-year career in the Hemodialysis program. Audrey’s goal is to ensure each patient has the optimal vascular access to ensure the best possible patient outcomes.

     

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    Tyler G. Tulloch , PhD, Kidney Urinary Program, Mental Health & Addictions Program, St. Joseph’s Healthcare, Hamilton, ON

     

    Tyler Tulloch received his Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from Ryerson University, where he will also receive his PhD in clinical psychology in the summer of 2019. After training at various sites including St. Michael’s Hospital and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto, he completed his predoctoral clinical psychology residency at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton. Here, he specialized in clinical health psychology, working with patients living with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic pain, and end-stage renal disease. He stayed on at St. Joseph’s to join the Kidney Urinary program, working with home dialysis patients in a novel pilot project incorporating psychology into their multidisciplinary care team. He is excited to be a part of this new initiative, which is the first of its kind in Ontario, and perhaps Canada.

     

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    Judy Ukrainetz, BN, RN, CNeph(C), Northern Alberta Renal Program, Edmonton, AB

     

    Judy Ukrainetz is a registered nurse with over 20 years of nursing experience at the University of Alberta Hospital working in various medicine units and most recently in hemodialysis for the past 12 years, with some of that time being at the home dialysis unit. Judy also works casual as a modality teaching nurse for the Northern Alberta Renal Program educating patients on the various types of dialysis. For the past year and a half Judy has been working closely with Dr. Braam in researching fluid control in hemodialysis patients. Judy has played a role in educating staff and patients in the role of using the technology “bio impedance” with the use of BCM (body composition monitor) technology to help measure patient’s fluid status and has created an electronic educational tool to educate patients about the effect of salt and fluid gains.

     

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    Katie-Lyn E Watson, RN – London Health Science Centre, London, ON

    My name is Katie Watson and I graduated from the Lambton/Windsor BScN program in 2016. I started working at LHSC in November on inpatient nephrology, respirology and short stay units. In July 2018 I started working in the peritoneal dialysis unit.

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    Suzanne E Webster, HBScHK, dip SIM, R. Kin – London Health Sciences Centre, London, ON

    Suzanne Webster is the Coordinator for Home Hemodialysis, Peritoneal Dialysis, Multi Care Kidney Clinic, General Nephrology and Vascular Access at London Health Sciences Centre. She has experience in Chronic Disease Management, including Cardiac Rehabilitation, Diabetes Management, Pulmonary Rehabilitation and End Stage Renal Disease.

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    Tracy Zeiler, Alberta Kidney Care – South, Sheldon Chumir Health Center, Calgary, AB

     

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    Wei Zeng, RN – Vascular Access Resource Nurse, Scarborough Health Network, Toronto, ON

     

    Wei Zeng, RN has been working in the Nephrology Program at the Scarborough Health Network in Toronto, Ontario over 12 years. She has experience in peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis.

    As a vascular access resource nurse she provides nursing care for hemodialysis patients and works with the dialysis nurses to troubleshoot hemodialysis access issues (A-V Fistula, A-V Graft or Central Venous Catheter).

    She also provides support for nurses related to vascular access assessment and cannulation and works closely with patients and their families to educate them about their dialysis access.

    She collaborates with the nephrologists and other team members and also consults with interventional radiologists and vascular surgeons regarding procedures and treatment plans.

     

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    Sylvia D. Zuidema, MSc, NP – Alberta Kidney Care North, University of Alberta Hospital, Edmonton, AB

     

    Sylvia Zuidema is a Nurse Practitioner who works at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta. She has worked for 15 years with Nephrology inpatients, Incentre hemodialysis and the nephrology consult service. Recently she has perfected the art of the axe throw and in a Zombie apocalypse she will be ready.

     

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