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Feb 16: Public Scholars Initiative: Health Equity Stream Info Session

Public Scholars Initiative: Health Equity Stream
Info Session

Thursday, February 16, 2023
12:00-1:00 pm



In partnership with UBC Health, the Public Scholars Initiative will be accepting applications in March 2023 for a new health equity stream. The Health Equity Stream is a dedicated funding source to further increase the number of Public Scholars Initiative scholars working to impact health equity within local, national, and global health systems.

In addition to the Public Scholars Initiative program, scholars in the Health Equity Stream will have the opportunity to engage in learning and networking focused on building interdisciplinary connections and a community of doctoral students working to improve health equity.

Health-oriented and equity-focused research exists in surprising and unexpected places across every faculty, school, and department at UBC. Doctoral students from across UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan undertaking innovative health equity-oriented research are invited to apply for the Health Equity Stream of the Public Scholars Initiative when the call opens in March.

Doctoral students and supervisors who are interested in the health equity stream are encouraged to attend this information session to learn more about programming, eligibility criteria, and the application process.  

Additional information, including a recording of the session, will be available on the Public Scholars Initiatives page. 

Feb 17: Branches of the same tree: Using linked administrative health data to reduce illicit drug poisoning and improve the health of people released from incarceration

Health After 2020 dialogue sessions are held as part of the Health After 2020 program at UBC Health, which enables researchers to engage in interdisciplinary, cross-institutional collaborations that aim to create change in health and health producing systems. These collaborations respond to the broad effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and further our understanding of the determinants and experience of health and wellbeing.

Branches of the same tree: Using linked administrative health data to reduce illicit drug poisoning and improve the health of people released from incarceration

Friday, February 17, 2023
12:00-1:00 pm


Incarceration is a major source of social and health inequities in Canada and globally. Persons who interact with the criminal legal system are at exceptionally high-risk of illicit drug poisoning. In response to this major challenge have been efforts to promote evidence-based decision making through use of linked administrative health data in BC and globally. In BC, these efforts have included the establishment of the Peer (Persons with Lived Experience) Advisory Group at the BC Centre for Disease Control that co-leads analyses using the BC Provincial Overdose Cohort.

In this dialogue session, hear from BC and Australia-based researchers and people with lived experience of incarceration who are using administrative health data to understand the impact of incarceration on illicit drug poisoning and other substance use related harms and vice versa. 

Participants will have a facilitated conversation and reflect on:

  • the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on incarcerated populations in BC, Canada, and Australia;
  • how the illicit drug poisoning crisis intersects with the criminal legal system and with other health and welfare systems;
  • the role of peer support and peer-run services in reducing recidivism, improving health, and preventing overdose; and 
  • best practices for engaging people with lived experience in research that uses administrative health data.
Amanda Slaunwhite, Assistant Professor, School of Population and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, UBC; Senior Scientist, BC Centre for Disease Control

Amanda Slaunwhite is Assistant Professor in the School of Population and Public Health in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia and Senior Scientist at the BC Centre for Disease Control. Amanda has expertise in overdose, substance use, addiction, and mental health, with eight years of experience working with administrative health data in BC and the US on topics related to overdose, substance use, and mental health. She leads a program of research that uses administrative health data and community-based participatory methods in the areas of peer support, substance use, and community reintegration after release from provincial and federal correctional institutions. Amanda is the scientific lead of the BC Provincial Overdose Cohort, a collection of linked administrative data, including data from BC Emergency Health Services and BC Coroner's Service, on fatal and non-fatal overdose events in BC since 2015. She is also the co-principal investigator of the UBC Research Excellence Cluster in Transformative Health and Justice.

Stuart Kinner, Professor of Health Equity, Curtin University 

Stuart Kinner is Professor of Health Equity at Curtin University, Head of the Justice Health Unit at University of Melbourne and Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, and Adjunct Professor in the Griffith Criminology Institute. For the past two decades, Stuart’s research has focussed on health services and health outcomes for people who come into contact with the criminal justice system. He is experienced in multi-sectoral data linkage, cohort studies, randomized trials, and other rigorous evaluation methodologies, systematic reviews, and meta-analyses. During his career, Stuart has published more than 300 publications, including 199 peer-reviewed papers, and attracted more than $29 million in research and evaluation funding. He chairs Australia’s National Youth Justice Health Advisory Group and serves on both the WHO Health in Prisons Programme Steering Group and the Worldwide Prison Health Research and Engagement Network Steering Committee.

Mo Korchinski, Executive Director, Unlocking the Gates Non-Profit Society

Mo Korchinski is the Executive Director of Unlocking the Gates Services Society and has a long history of involvement with community-based participatory research. She is an advocate for people involved in the criminal justice system and continues to push for change at a policy-level and increased supports for her community.

Heather Palis, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, UBC

Heather Palis holds a PhD in Population and Public Health (Epidemiology and Biostatistics) and is a postdoctoral fellow at UBC in the Department of Psychiatry in the Faculty of Medicine and at the BC Centre for Disease Control. Heather’s research interests include polysubstance use and pharmacological treatments for opioid and stimulant use disorder. Her postdoctoral research examines the impact of recent interventions introduced in response to the illicit drug toxicity crisis in British Columbia (e.g. expanded opioid agonist treatment, prescribed safer supply) on overdose risk among people with histories of incarceration.

Sofia Bartlett, Adjunct Professor, School of Population and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, UBC; Senior Scientist, BC Centre for Disease Control

Sofia Bartlett is Adjunct Professor in the School of Population and Public Health in the Faculty of Medicine at UBC, Senior Scientist for Sexually Transmitted and Blood-Borne Infections (STIBBIs) at the BC Centre for Disease Control, and Co-Director of the Canadian Collaboration for Prison Health and Education. Sofia’s research interests are related to the overlap and co-occurrence of infectious diseases (including STIBBIs, SARS-CoV-2, and tuberculosis) with substance use and incarceration. She is interested in ways that community-based and participatory methods can be applied to research utilising integrated administrative data to inform public health policy and programming, while also advancing the rights and the health of marginalized people.

Sara Cadeau, Knowledge Keeper

Sara Cadeau (she/her/they/them) is a student of the energetic arts, with a focus on the reclamation of women’s medicine and leadership bundles. Sara’s ancestors include both Anishnaabe and Ashkenazi (from Russia and Poland). Being able to reconnect with family on her mother's side has helped her learn that they are registered to Garden River Ojibway First Nation in Ontario. 
For nearly 20 years, Sara has been sober and abstinent and on the red road ceremonial path. She is a transformational space holder, specializing in finding balance between counterpoints, utilizing softness and strength when needed while working through sometimes uncomfortable places and topics. Sara’s energy has been described as that of a uniterand weaver, a soothing balm on wounds visceral and situational as well as intergenerational, systemic and deeply personal. 
A busy decade and a half in her one-on-one healing practice, working predominantly with Indigenous nations, informs her current work. This includes extensive leadership work in fundraising and mobilization of community, organizing and hosting grassroots rallies (including with Idle No More), hosting femme and them’s moon circle gatherings, and becoming a cherished auntie to many. Her soft spot is walking with youth in leadership as well as women and queer folks who are finding their voices and power. 
Sara was honoured to be hand chosen by Elaine Alec (Syilx and Secwepemc Nations) to be in the first cohort of Elaine’s Cultivating Safe Spaces course to become a certified trainer. She is currently enrolled in SFU’s Community Capacity Building program and has been busy developing her emotional regulation and resiliency workshop series. Sara's healing course The Reclamation of Women Bundles will be launching soon.

Marnie Scow, Graduate Student, School of Population and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, UBC

Marnie Scow is from the traditional territories of the Kwakiutl and Namgis First Nations, which are part of the Kwakwaka’wakw Peoples on Vancouver Island. Marnie identifies as a person with lived experience with substance use and the criminal justice system. She has worked in public and Indigenous health in a variety of capacities, including being the first peer hire with the Indigenous Wellness Team at First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) and the first Indigenous woman to work with the grassroots organization Culture Saves Lives, bringing personal connections, stories, with low barrier access to culture for both residents of Vancouver’s downtown east side and BC First Nations communities. While working with FNHA’s Indigenous Wellness Team, Marnie facilitated many dialogues about Indigenous harm reduction and decolonizing addiction throughout First Nations communities in British Columbia. Marnie has a passion for and often specializes in Indigenizing harm reduction, housing first, alcohol harm reduction, advocacy for changes in the healthcare system for Indigenous people, and low barrier access to safe supply. 

Mar 1: What can team-based care look like in BC when providing behavioural and mental health care within primary care?

The TBC @ UBC Network, supported by UBC Health, convenes health professionals and leaders, community members, academics, and policymakers to bring forward questions and ideas important for team-based care in BC. The network supports province-wide efforts to enhance team-based care in BC. Together, UBC Health, Doctors of BC, BC Patient Safety & Quality Council, and UBC’s Innovation Support Unit aim to offer a responsive and integrated approach to learning on team-based care. This includes showcasing team-based care resources, tools, models, and experiences through Team Up! webinars and podcasts, alongside opportunity for dialogue and exchange of ideas on those topic areas during TBC @ UBC Network events.

What can team-based care look like in BC when providing behavioural and mental health care within primary care?

Wednesday, March 1, 2023
12:00-1:30 pm


Mental health concerns have escalated in recent years and added to pressure to meet community health needs in BC. Family doctors have increasingly had to respond as mental health care providers. How can counselling professions (psychologists, counsellors, social workers, and other care providers) play a role in team-based primary care to help respond to patients’ behavioural and mental health concerns sustainably? What developments are happening in BC now in this area?

The formal presentation and question period (60 minutes) will be followed by an opportunity for informal discussion and networking (30 minutes):

  • 12:00-1:00 pm: Panel Presentation and Dialogue
  • 1:00-1:30 pm: Informal Discussion and Networking (optional)
Erika Penner, Director of Advocacy, BC Psychological Association; Psychology Lead, Vancouver Coastal Health

Erika Penner, PhD, RPsych is Director of Advocacy for the BC Psychological Association and the Psychology Lead for Vancouver Coastal Health. In her consulting roles, she works with provincial and community organizations to develop and implement mental and behavioural health programs that are evidence-based and cost-effective and improve patient and provider outcomes.

Zach Finley, Practice Lead, Clinical Counselling, Vancouver Coastal Health

Zach Finley, MA, RCC, has worked for Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) since 2009. Zach has provided counselling services across the continuum of mental health and substance use care in VCH, including group and individual dialectical behaviour therapy and psychodynamic psychotherapy, project leadership in person- and family-centred care, and frontline supervision of a community substance use team. He is currently Practice Lead for Clinical Counselling and supports 200 clinical counsellors in the Vancouver Community portfolio, including the Vancouver Primary Care Network.

Bridget Beachy, Director of Behavioral Health, Community Health of Central Washington

Bridget Beachy, PsyD, is dedicated to the integration of behavioural health services into medical settings. She is Director of Behavioral Health at Community Health of Central Washington in Washington State, where she practices as a behavioral health consultant, delivering clinical services to patients of all ages. Bridget has experience training interdisciplinary professionals (e.g., behavioral health consultants, medical providers, nurses, senior leadership, directors, support staff) and students in integrated care.

David Bauman, Behavioral Health Education Director, Community Health of Central Washington

David Bauman, PsyD is a licensed psychologist and principal member of Beachy Bauman Consulting. He also is the Behavioral Health Education Director at Community Health of Central Washington. David enjoys speaking, presenting, and writing on topics related to primary care, contextualism and compassionate healthcare, and the integration of behavioral health into medical settings.

Simon Elterman , Registered Psychologist, Elterman Psychology

Simon Elterman, PsyD, is an expert in integrated primary care. As a behavioural health consultant for the Hope to Health Clinic in the Vancouver downtown eastside, he provided mental and behavioural health services for patients of all ages and with all presentations, including substance use and suicidality. He has international experience in the application of brief, targeted interventions and has first-hand experience in the success of this model of care in BC.