Winter 2023 | {View as Webpage}

Welcome to the Winter 2023 Edition of the NRC News. This e-newsletter will bring you news and events related to the Niagara Regional Campus. If you have any suggestions or would like to submit an article or event, please contact [email protected].

Changes to library off-campus authentication - McMaster University Libraries

McMaster students, faculty, and staff, when prompted right before accessing a library e-resource, will use their Office 365 login credentials to authenticate and gain access from off-campus. The upgrade will enable single sign-on (SSO) for a seamless experience and multi-factor authentication (MFA) for an added level of security.

Meanwhile, individuals who have been granted access to e-resources as an Alumni, Courtesy, or Retired Faculty patron will access available e-resources using their My Library Account email and password.

There will be minimal change to how library patrons access e-resources. However, in some cases, saved bookmarks will be affected, such as bookmarks pointing to alumni resources or bookmarks pointing to the library's soon-to-be-decommissioned login page (

For More Information
Contact FHS Faculty Relations

Dr. Rhonda Collins appointed Care of the Elderly, Family Medicine PG Development Leader at Niagara Regional Campus

We are excited to announce that Dr. Rhonda Collins has accepted the role of Care of the Elderly, Family Medicine, Postgraduate Development Leader, at the Niagara Regional Campus.

The Care of the Elderly lead is responsible for assessing the feasibility of and creating a plan for the delivery of Family Medicine PGY-3 Enhanced Skills Program in Care of the Elderly to be delivered within the Niagara Region.

NRC is so excited for Dr. Rhonda Collins to join us in this role beginning January 9, 2023. Congratulations Dr. Collins!

Pringle Family Health Research Award

Congratulations Dr. Pam Kapend for receiving the Pringle Family Health Research Award for her project titled "Rare Disease Patient Insights for Emergency Medicine".

The Pringle Family Research Award as established in 2021 by Dr. Shira Brown, an NRC faculty member, and Niagara Health Emergency Physician, along with her brother Wes Pringle, in recognition of their parents, Alistaire and Beryl Pringle, residents of the Niagara Region and whose family appreciates the healthcare they have received in Niagara. This award exemplifies the significant impact of philanthropy on the wellness of the Niagara community and through it the NRC seeks to inspire others to consider how they can positively impact those who need care the most through individual and collective action. 

Dr. George Bibawi Award for Excellence in Teaching

The Dr. George Bibawi Award for Excellence in Teaching was created to honour the tremendous contribution to anesthesia teaching provided by Dr. Bibawi and it is awarded annually to a clinical anesthesia teacher at the Niagara Regional Campus who best exemplifies excellence in teaching in anesthesia.


This year, we are pleased to present the award to Dr. Anil Pandey. Over his career at Niagara Health, Dr. Pandey has been consistent and a valuable contributor to the advancement of medical education. His colleagues appreciate the work he does to support the department and has happily taught countless medical students and residents.


Congratulations Dr. Pandey, and thank you for your outstanding learning and clinical environment.  

Niagara Regional Campus "Founders Award"

We are pleased to announce Sajine Sathiasalen C2023 as the recipient of the Founders Award.


This award was created by three of NRC’s founding faculty, Drs. Robert Josefchak, Maynard Luterman and Bruce Rosenberg, to honour a member of the graduating class who best exemplifies the Founders’ ideals of community, scholarship, innovation, and collegiality.


Sajine was nominated by multiple members of her class for this award, to which they noted the many leadership roles she has taken. Thank you for your outstanding contributions to the Niagara Regional Campus. You enrich the Campus and MD program with your hard work and dedication to excellence. 

Resident Appreciation Week - February 6 - 10, 2023

Resident Doctors of Canada (RDoC) hosts a weeklong campaign to celebrate the vital work undertaken by residents for patients and healthcare in Canada. The 2023 campaign will be the fourth year that McMaster PGME has run a coinciding event. Resident Physician Appreciation Week is February 6 - 1, 2023.

The following are the plans that are in place for the event:

  • Focus: This year our focus is on STRENGTH. The definition of strength in a person includes positive traits and skills, such as knowledge, abilities, and talents. Our residents and fellows have shown strength over the last year in multiple ways, including their focused training and patient care, their advocacy for wellness, displays of leadership, and the support offered to each other during difficult times.

  • Swag - PGME will circulate buttons for all residents, fellows, faculty, and PAs with #ResidentStrong and Mac Loves Our Fellows. Programs will each receive a package of stress balls in the shape of a barbell (representing strength), and we hope the trainees and programs will use these to spark some Instagram fun with @mcmasterpgme

  • Social Media - Last year’s Instagram video was a huge hit thanks to all the program directors and administrators who submitted short video clips. Programs are encouraged to submit videos (recommend max 10 seconds long), talking about the strength your trainees have displayed, and PGME will create a reel for Instagram again. NEW THIS YEAR, PGME has prizes to raffle off to trainee’s during the campaign who submit/share/participate in the Instagram buzz.

  • Gift card - A $7 Everything e-gift card will be emailed to all trainees as a thank you for their hard work. The Everything card offers 100’s of options to choose from.

  • MessagingTrainees will receive messages through MedSIS from leadership and PARO representatives throughout the week, acknowledging and thanking them for their strength, hard work and dedication to medicine.

  • Hospital Lobby Banners - Once again, the roll-up banners provided by PGME will be displayed in various HHS and SJHH lobbies during the week of the campaign, highlighting what it means to be a resident.

Alumni Updates

Congratulation to Dr. Julian Daza-Vargas, Class of 2018 for receiving the 2022 Vanier Scholarship for his research in Geriatrics. Dr. Daza-Vargas went on to complete his General Surgery residency at the University of Toronto.

The Government of Canada launched the Vanier Canada Scholarship program in 2008 to strengthen Canada's ability to attract and retain world-class doctoral students and establish Canada as a global centre of excellence in research and higher learning. Vanier scholars demonstrate leadership skills and a high standard of scholar achievement in graduate studies in the social sciences and humanities, natural sciences and/or engineering in health.

Congratulations Dr. Daza-Vargas, this is a high achievement and NRC is very proud of this accomplishment!

Call for Preceptors


We are looking for NRC preceptors to supervise PreClerkship/Clerkship electives to cover a shortfall for the following 2-week blocks:


  • July 3 – July 16
  • July 17 – July 30
  • July 31 – August 13
  • August 14 – August 20 (1-week)


NRC preceptors to supervise Clerkship electives for the following 2-week blocks:


  • August 28 – September 10
  • September 11 – September 24
  • September 25 – October 08
  • October 09 – October 22
  • October 23 – November 05
  • November 06 – November 19
  • November 20 – December 03
  • December 04 – December 17


If you/your group has capacity to supervise elective students during any of the above time periods, please add to the form


Please contact Lori Gualtieri if you have any questions about supervising electives.


On behalf of our NRC learners and staff, we thank you for your hard work and dedication to medical education. We appreciate your ongoing support of our NRC learners!


The department is currently seeking preceptors for undergraduate medical students taking part in the Longitudinal Family Medicine Experience (LFME).

  • This rotation will require 16 hours of in-person clinical time (e.g., 4 half days @ 4 hours each)
  • The 16 hours are to take place between October 6th – March 20th 2023
  • Students and preceptors will complete the LFME at mutually agreeable times according to availability

Upon completing the mandatory portion of LFME, very motivated learners are encouraged to pursue more clinical experiences with the same preceptor or a different preceptor with a focused practice in any one of the many areas that family physicians have their scope of practice. Faculty members will receive academic contributions for each supervision placement.

Please consider sharing your experiences and expertise with our learners! If you are interested in being an FME preceptor, please respond by filling out this short survey or contact Connie Shen

NRC Leadership Opportunities


The Niagara Regional Campus is seek to fill the position of Clinician Scientist with a family physician who has a Niagara-based practice, and who has, is developing or has interest in developing a program of research within equity-deserving and underserved populations that will provide benefits to care in the Niagara region.

To view the terms of reference, click here

Interested application for this position should submit a cover letter and CV to Melanie Pulling. The position will remain open until a suitable candidate is found.

UGME Leadership Opportunities


The MD program is seeking a faculty educator to serve as Chair of Diversity and Inclusion. The Chair's role is to facilitate the program's work in: (1) Recruiting students, faculty, and staff that reflect the diversity of our society,(2) Encouraging diversity throughout the admissions process aligned with the MD program's social accountability mission, (3) Maintaining an environment of equity and respect where everyone can work and learn free of discrimination, (4) Assure that our curriculum prepares our graduates to meet the needs of the diverse communities they serve in their careers.

To view the job description, click here

Interested applicants for this position should contact Ms. Jen Lourenco to obtain a complete TOR, and apply by Wednesday, March 1, 2023. Interviews for the position will be held at the end of day on April 19th with an anticipated start date in June 2023.


The MD program is seeking a clinician, who is a health professional other than a physician, to serve as Co-Chair of Professional Competencies. The Competencies Co-Chair are responsible for overseeing the planning and delivery of the Professional Competencies Curriculum within the distributed medical education network of McMaster's MD Program.

To view the job description, click here.

Interested applicants for this position should contact Ms. Jen Lourenco to obtain a complete TOR, and apply by Wednesday, March 1, 2023. Interviews for the position will be held at the end of day on April 26th with an anticipated start date in July 2023. 

PGME Leadership Opportunities


The Niagara Site Director is responsible for overall administration and direction of the Family Medicine Residency Program at the site. The Site Director works closely with the Program Director, other Site Directors, Education Associates and site faculty members in the delivery of the Family Medicine program at the site.

To view the full role descriptions, click here

Interested application for this position should submit a cover letter and CV to Nancy Devlin and apply no later than February 27, 2023.

The Niagara Regional Campus is committed to the principles of equity, diversity, inclusion, Indigenous reconciliation and social justice in all that we do. 

To this end, we will be posting a leadership position in equity, diversity, inclusion and Indigenous reconciliation later this spring who will be responsible for enhancing policies, programs and practices within the Regional Campus to advance these principles and work with colleagues in EDI and IR across McMaster, Niagara Health and community partners. Stay tuned for more information about this important new leadership position and please consider if you or one of your colleagues would be well suited for this role.

To further deepen our understanding of these topics we also have purchased some focused reading in these areas that will be available for borrow from the NRC library and will focus on one of these books each month. This month the focus is on “Indigenous Relations; Insights, Tips & Suggestions To Make Reconciliation a Reality” by Bob Joseph with Cynthia F. Joseph. This practical and focused read offers sound advice on how individuals and organizations can understand and work within cultural differences, this impact of treaties, Indigenous leadership to break down barriers that Indigenous communities face and shine truth on the common myths and stereotypes about Indigenous people. This book offers concrete examples of how to work respectfully and effectively with Indigenous people. This book is “an invaluable tool for anyone who wants to improve their cultural competency and undo the legacy of the Indian Act.”

Dr. Jeremy Bannon

Family Medicine

Dr. Nisha Goel

Family Medicine - Hospitalist

Dr. Cara Groves

Family Medicine

Dr. Aryo Rohani

Family Medicine - Hospitalist

Dr. Katy Li

Family Medicine

Dr. Mashur Rahman

Internal Medicine

Dr. Sarah Chaudhry

Family Medicine

Dr. Alexandra Bojcevski

Internal Medicine - Cardiology

Dr. Lydia Farnell

Family Medicine - Emergency Medicine

Dr. DNatasha Ovtcharenko

Internal Medicine - Critical Care

Dr. Oliver Shaw

Family Medicine - Emergency Medicine

Research Stories

My name is Cezara Ene and I am a second-year medical student at the Niagara Regional Campus following a Bachelors of Health Sciences. My research interest centers on qualitative research in medical education and physician-patient interactions.


I’m happy to be involved with several projects while at NRC. With the support of Dr. Anita Acai, an assistant professor and education scientist in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, we explore physicians’ incorporation of their experiences as patients in teaching, from both physician and trainee perspectives. The second arm of the project investigating students’ experiences is supported by a Partnered in Teaching and Learning Seed Grant. I’m grateful for the opportunity afforded by the McMaster MD Enrichment Year Program to lead a personally-important, qualitative, interview-based research project from start to finish.


I’m also working on a project led by Shira Gertsman (C2023), Dr. Connie Williams, Dr. Johanna Shapiro, and a team of C2023 and C2024 students from the Hamilton campus to investigate chronically ill patients’ perspectives and experiences of clinical empathy, with the aim of characterizing targets for promotion and intervention in medical education to better support patients with chronic illness. This three-part project is supported by the McMaster Medical Student Research Excellence Scholarship (MAC RES).


The past two years have also given me the chance to continue work with Noah Yang (C2024) and Dr. Larkin Lamarche on patient perspectives of body image conversations in primary care; we’re excited to have had our findings recently published in the Journal of Patient Experiences. Noah and my co-led scoping review with Dr. Lina Santaguida exploring stakeholders’ perspectives on artificial intelligence in radiology was published in the European Journal of Radiology and recently featured on the European Society of Radiology’s research highlight blog.


Through these projects and research methods courses in Health Professions Education and Systematic Reviews offered by the MD program, I’ve learned about project design and implementation, navigating the challenges and best practices of qualitative research, and collaborating toward common goals. I’m grateful for the Niagara Regional Campus environment which provides strong support for scholarship and community engagement!

ICAM Registration Now Open!

International Congress on Academic Medicine sponsored by the Associate of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (April 13- 18, 2023, Quebec City) 

ICAM will be a congress that is unparalleled in scope and reputation in Canada, providing unique opportunities for networking and sharing of scholarly work in medical education along the continuum and across academic medicine.

At ICAM, you will find: 

  • World-renowned international speakers
  • Cutting edge plenaries and accredited courses tackling global themes in academic medicine
  • Presentations by Gairdner Laureates
  • Poster and oral presentations, workshops and plenary sessions
  • Networking opportunities (in-person and online)
  • A five-day career fair and exhibit hall welcoming the top-talent in Canadian and International medicine
  • The AFMC Awards and AFMC's 80th anniversary celebration
Register Now

Ischemic Stroke and Periprocedural Discontinuation of Antithrombotic Agents: A Single Center Retrospective Chart Review

Ruqqiyah Rana (C2023), Leon Li (C2023), Andrew Cao, Hannah Elaine Snyder, Dr. Faraz Masood (Medicine)


This article investigates the relationship between periprocedural discontinuation of antithrombotics and the occurrence of ischemic stroke in a regional stroke center. To continue reading the article, click here.

Thinking Positively Reduces Impacts of Aging

Dr. Larry Chambers (Health Research Methods, Evidence and Impact) and Rebekah Sibbald (C2025)

Lisa LaFlamme's recent dismissal as the CTV news anchor made international headlines. This controversy also shed light on the disproportionate effect age stereotypes have on women, especially in the media and in the industry. To continue reading this article, click here.

The Case for Mature Medical Students

Rod Parsa (C2025) and Rebekah Sibbald (C2025)

Starting medical school as a mature student, Rod and Rebekah were anticipating some feeling of alienation. Pushing 30 years old and having switched into medicine from an unrelated field, they didn't quite fit the traditional mould. To continue reading this article, click here.

The Key to Living Longer and Better? Dying at Home

Rebekah Sibbald (C2025) and Dr. Larry Chambers (Health Research Methods, Evidence and Impact)

Although it is not possible to guarantee a good death, we can reduce the risk of a bad deth by thinking and talking about end-of-life. To learn more about the key to living longer and better, click here.

A Step-by-Step Process for Assessing the Economic Impact of Regional Medical Campuses in Canada

Genevieve Maltais Lapointe MA, Kim Lemky PhD, Pierre Gagne MD, Jill Konkin MD, Karl Stobbe (Family Medicine), Gervan Fearon PhD

Regional medical campuses create positive economic impacts in rural communities and small cities. They increase educational capacity, medical services, and address the shortage or maldistribution of physicians in these areas. This paper answers the question: How do you assess the economic impact of a regional medical campus? To learn more about this article, click here.

Niagara Health Helping to Train the Next Generation of Healthcare Workers

Dr. Liam Beedling (Surgery) is a shining example of the positive outcomes of the partnerships of Niagara Regional Campus (NRC) and Niagara Health (NH).

Dr. Beedling completed his undergraduate medical education at the Niagara Regional Campus in 2016 and began his surgical residency with NRC and NH from 2016 to 2021 and is now working at NH as a general surgeon.

"Its a great place for learners and great to continue to have the support of those who taught me," he says. To learn more, click here

Professor Helps Combat Niagara Opioid Crisis

Dr. Karl Stobbe (Clinical Professor, DFM) is teaming up with Niagara-area welfare agencies, to ensure a supply of safer drugs for people at risk of overdosing on opioids.

The program offers help including primary health care, street outreach, addictions and mental health services, housing supports and peer counselling to ensure that lived experience is at the forefront of care.

"Safer supply is a harm reduction approach that involves providing a pharmaceutical drug supply of known quantity and quality to people who use illegal drugs and are at high risk of overdose and other harms," said Stobbe.

To read more about Dr. Stobbe's work, click here

Niagara Public Health

"Promoting Early Relational Health and Child Development" Education Event

On February 9 there will be an in-person lunch followed by viewing of the Canadian Pediatric Society’s National Grand Rounds featuring Dr. Blair S. Hammond and a chance to network in-person and learn more about Public Health’s resources and services in early childhood development. Dr. Hammond is a passionate, practical and high-calibre speaker about early emotional health and neuroscience. 

We hope this will further our conversation about early childhood development and the partnerships between community physicians and Public Health’s family health program. I will be there as will Dr. Robin Williams, former Niagara Medical Officer of Health and strong advocate for the importance of the Early Years. I would look forward to seeing you there as well. If you are unable to attend in person, the CPS Rounds portion of the event can be joined virtually and family physicians as well as pediatricians are welcome to attend. 

Please feel free to share this information with your colleagues and any clinical staff who work with children and families in your clinics.

Event Flyer

Hospice Niagara

Primary Care Survey: A Palliative Approach to Care

Background: This survey is being conducted by the Palliative Care Data and Quality Collaborative working group of the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant (HNHB) geography.

Purpose: The purpose of this survey is to assist and inform the Regional Palliative Care Network’s education and capacity planning that will seek to develop resources that support Primary Care Practitioners in the provision of a Palliative approach to care for their patients within the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant (HNHB) geography.

The survey will take approximately 10 minutes or less to complete. All responses will be treated confidential.

Complete the Survey

Niagara Ontario Health Team

OHT-ESON Strategic Plan

Over the next few months, as OHT-ESON develops their strategic plan, they are seeking community engagement from patients/clients and families/caregivers. They want to hear from the community about what matters most to them in health care, which will help shape and guide their future work. For this project, interested participants will be asked to participate in surveys, focus groups, interviews, and/or planning sessions.

Strategic Plan Priority Survey - All Niagara Residents

24/7 Navigation Project

It can be difficult for providers and clients to know all of the health and social services that are available in the community. This project will assist in designing a 24/7 system navigation solution. For this project, interested participants may be asked to sit on a project team and attend bi-weekly meetings, take part in a focus group, or share their journey navigating the health system.

Clinician Survey - NOHT Strategic Plan and 24/7 Navigation Project

UGME COVID Communication:

Health and Safety:



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