Celebrating the top ten female visionaries who are harnessing the power of IT to transform health and healthcare in Canada today.

The Women Leaders in Digital Health Award is inclusive of all women of influence in health information technology, no matter what their specialty, and is open to all women in the digital health community in Canada. The winners have made a significant contribution to move the Canadian HI/telehealth agenda forward through their dedication and promotion of activities, involvement with organizational change or transformation through the use of technology; have demonstrated sound operational strength, including the qualities of enterprise confidence and credibility, effective organizational communication, and broad influence. Their leadership and influence is recognized within their jurisdiction or nationally, and they have made a significant contribution to or strongly impacted health outcomes or health system improvements.

2017-18 Women Leaders in Digital Health

University of Toronto
MacKenzie Health
Saint Elizabeth Health Care
Canadian Virtual Hospice
University of Victoria
C-HOBIC and Health Informatics Advisor
Canada Health Infoway

University of Toronto

Dr. Lynn Nagle

 

Assistant Professor, University of Toronto – Dr. Lynn Nagle, PhD, RN, FAAN is recognized internationally for her pioneering work in nursing informatics. She is an Assistant Professor at the Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto. As a coinvestigator, she has contributed to nursing research initiatives on the use of information and communications technologies. Her areas of scholarly interest include the human experience of technology in health care, and the integration of technology innovations in nursing education.

 

Dr. Nagle is the founding President of the Canadian Nursing Informatics Association. She is an Adjunct Professor at Western University and an Adjunct Faculty member at the University of Rochester in New York. She has served as Chair of the Informatics Competency Development Working Group for the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing and led an RNAO expert panel in the development of a Nurse Educator Informatics Resource toolkit. She is also the Editor-in-Chief for the Canadian Journal of Nursing Leadership. Dr. Nagle has a consulting practice in health informatics, in which she works with a variety of clients locally, provincially and nationally.

UBC

Dr. Maureen O’Donnell

 

Dr. Maureen O’Donnell is a developmental pediatrician, an Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and is the Executive Director of Child Health BC, British Columbia’s child health network and part of the senior leadership team of BCCH.

 

She is a Past President of the AACPDM. (American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine). In addition, she was founding Chair of Canada’s Royal College of Physician and Surgeon’s Specialty Committee on Developmental Pediatrics and has served as President, Canadian Pediatric Society’s Developmental Section. Currently, she serves as the current Vice-Chair of the Board of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Health Centres and is a member of the Royal College Exam Board for Developmental Pediatrics.

 

Dr. O’Donnell is a current member of Translating Emergency Knowledge for Kids (TREKK) NationalCentre of Excellence. She has recently completed her term as President for the American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine. She was founding Chair of the Royal College’s Committeeon Developmental Pediatrics and continues to serve on the Royal College’s Examination Board. She has served as President, Canadian Pediatric Society Developmental Section.

MacKenzie Health

Diane Salois-Swallow

 

Chief Information Officer, MacKenzie Health – Diane is a seasoned professional with over 30 years of proven experience in Digital Health, Nursing and Education. She is a respected leader, communicator and team player with strong Health IT skills and a record of achieving goals. Diane effectively fosters strong partnerships/relationships with key stakeholders, peers and professional associations. She delivers results on-time, despite competing demands and operational needs. Diane is committed to transforming care delivery models to better meet patient safety and quality agendas by assisting clinicians and other stakeholders in successfully transitioning to digital health.

 

She is an active leader in a variety of professional associations such as Canada’s Health Informatics Executive Forum (CHIEF), RNAO and has participated in speaking engagements both provincially and nationally. Diane is a strong advocate on providing access to health information to help empower patients to take an active role in their health care. Diane is one of few Chief Information Officers (CIO) who can claim the achievement of reaching Stage 6 EMRAM. A pioneer in her field, Diane shepherded a new model in IT healthcare/hospitals with a vision to create a tri-hospital partnership for increased efficiencies. She successfully executed her vision into reality as the successful, shared CIO.

Saint Elizabeth Health Care

Shirlee Sharkey

 

President and CEO, Saint Elizabeth Health Care – Shirlee Sharkey is the president and CEO of Saint Elizabeth Health Care, a not-for-profit social enterprise providing home care, health solutions and education to people where they are and when they need it. As both a pioneer and futurist, Ms. Sharkey has a formidable track record of health innovation and the use of digital technology to enhance care and the human experience. Under her leadership, Saint Elizabeth has been deploying and investing in new tools for virtual care since the late 1990s – broadly ranging from online education and community networks, to mobile technology and telehealth applications.

 

Dedicated to improving access to care for vulnerable groups, Ms. Sharkey has fused innovation and technology to tackle tough societal issues and facilitate transformative solutions in areas such as Indigenous health, end of life care and family caregiver wellness.

 

Ms. Sharkey was the chair of the Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee of Health Quality Ontario from 2014 to 2017. She currently serves on the board of the Canadian Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation, and on the advisory council of EXCITE International, a global collaboration of stakeholders working in the premarket space to change the paradigm of health technology innovation and adoption.

CAMH

Heather Sulkers

 

Director of Clinical Informatics, CAMH – Heather is the Director of Clinical Informatics at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, Ontario. She has extensive experience, leveraging her nursing background, implementing healthcare information technology systems in hospitals, community health service providers and physician practices in Canada, the US and Australia.

 

She has proven stakeholder engagement and communication experience in clinical settings, understanding the transformation of clinical workflows and process optimization enabled by clinical systems, incorporation of privacy and security requirements and development of transition, readiness and change management plans. Heather has a strong understanding of the complexities involved in achieving healthcare transformation via the implementation of new information technology platforms, recently with the Cerner Clinical Information System at an Ontario Academic Health Centre.

 

Heather’s experience and clinical background has enabled her to actively engage with clinicians and stakeholders across all levels of an organization to ensure technology adoption is streamlined and maximized. Through Heather’s work in consulting at many organizations to better leverage health information technologies to enhance care safety and quality, Heather has made a positive impact to the lives of many people in Canada.

Canadian Virtual Hospice

Shelly Cory

 

Executive Director, Canadian Virtual Hospice – Shelly Cory has a unique ability to identify low-tech, high impact solutions to health challenges, and as the Executive Director of Canadian Virtual Hospice; she convenes talented, diverse pan-Canadian virtual teams to produce innovative, award winning online knowledge products.

 

She has led the evolution of Canadian Virtual Hospice for the past 10 years, propelling it into the world’s most comprehensive online knowledge management centre on palliative care (Fassbender, 2015), serving 1.6 million visitors in 2016. Upon her arrival at Canadian Virtual Hospice she spearheaded a complete redevelopment of the website that earned Virtual Hospice a silver award at the international Health and Science Communication Association Media Festival (2010).

 

Between 2014-17, with investment by the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer (CPAC), Shelly convened and led 90 pan-Canadian partners and patient and family advisors, in the development of four large scale national projects, tackling national gaps in online content and support on complex issues including: the intersection of culture, serious illness and end of life for Indigenous people, immigrants and refugees (LivingMyCulture.ca and Indigenous Voices); accredited pain management training on use of Methadone (Methadone4Pain.ca) and; the unmet need for grief support (MyGrief.ca). She is currently overhauling the 15,000 page virtualhospice.ca and seeking investment for new digital innovations for caregivers.

University of Victoria

Dr. Elizabeth Borycki

 

Tenured Professor, University of Victoria – Professor Borycki is a tenured Professor in the School of Health Information Science, and an Adjunct Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of Victoria. Prior to arriving at UVic in 2005, Professor Borycki worked in numerous roles among them an Emergency Program Coordinator, Disease Management Specialist, Clinical Informatics Specialist, Consultant and Researcher.

 

Elizabeth has served as the Vice President of the International Medical Informatics Association, representing COACH and Canada. Elizabeth has authored 170 journal articles and 5 books and has conducted pioneering research in the safety of healthcare IT leading to a number of international awards.  In her work through COACH she has helped establish international connections and collaborations in health informatics. Elizabeth teaches organizational behaviour and change management, systems evaluation, quality improvement and research methods in the undergraduate and graduate programs.

 

Her research interests include clinical informatics, organizational change management, health information system implementations, technology safety, project management and information seeking involving health information systems. In 2008 she spearheaded and co-designed the first (and only) nursing–informatics Masters degree program in Canada. Not only has this degree program lead the way nationally but it is now serving as a model for graduate programs internationally. She works tirelessly on the effect of technology on healthcare professionals work in evaluating and optimizing the positive impact of informatics in health care.

C-HOBIC and Health Informatics Advisor

Dr. Kathryn Hannah

 

National Executive Lead, C-HOBIC and Health Informatics Advisor – Dr. Kathryn J. Hannah is a nurse and a senior health informatics consultant specializing in information management in health environments. With over 40 years of experience in academia, health care delivery, government and the private sector, Dr. Hannah has a rich depth of knowledge and experience in health care delivery organizations, the health system and in nursing. She also has extensive experience in knowledge transfer and change management as a consultant, workshop leader and an educator. Her skills and experience as a facilitator are respected internationally. Currently, Dr. Hannah is Health Informatics Advisor to the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) and Executive Project Leader of the Canadian Health Outcomes for Better Information and Care project.

OntarioMD

Elizabeth Keller

 

Vice President, Product Strategy & Delivery, OntarioMD – Elizabeth Keller has been working in the digital health field for over 20 years. She is a respected senior executive leader who engages clients and stakeholders, leads teams, and initiates change. Elizabeth has successfully delivered programs and projects for national and provincial governments and health care organizations.

 

Elizabeth Keller is currently the Vice-President Product Strategy & Delivery for OntarioMD (OMD). In her role as VP, she is responsible for the Ontario provincial roll-out of a comprehensive suite of digital health services to improve the physician and patient experience, functionality and usage of digital health tools. Elizabeth’s work has been recognized at the national level as OntarioMD was recently awarded 3 national Canadian Health Informatics Awards for products and services within her portfolio. Before moving to OntarioMD, Elizabeth was a Senior Consultant with both IBM & PwC.

 

Elizabeth Keller’s volunteer activities are as impressive as her employment portfolio. Elizabeth volunteers her expertise and leadership in the healthcare community in Canada and internationally, gladly giving of her time to move the digital health agenda forward. Elizabeth is an elected COACH Board Director and Executive Member (Treasurer), Chair of COACH’s National eSafety Committee, and contributes as a writer and a speaker at all the major eHealth conferences in North America. Elizabeth has led the COACH eSafety initiative in Canada for over five years. At the international level, Elizabeth is Vice-Head for the Canadian Delegation to ISO TC 215 (Health Informatics) for the Standards Council of Canada. She has also worked with the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva and with top global standards experts to develop an action plan for improving standards awareness and adoption in emerging and developing countries.

 

Elizabeth is a big proponent of women in the digital workforce and has taken active steps to engage women leaders and to mentor and support women to become leaders. She has led the launch of COACH’s Women Leaders in Health Informatics; and organized events across Canada in Vancouver, Calgary, and Toronto for women to connect and learn together. Elizabeth supports emerging leaders in Canada through direct mentoring and engagements, networking events, and presentations.

Canada Health Infoway

Shelagh Maloney

 

Vice President, Consumer Health, Communications and Evaluation Services, Canada Health Infoway – Shelagh Maloney is responsible for driving the implementation and adoption of patient-centred digital health solutions and patient engagement activities. She oversees evaluation efforts that measure the benefits of digital health investments in Canada and leads the development and execution of all of Infoway’s communications and marketing efforts.

 

Prior to assuming her current role, she held a number of executive positions in the public and private sectors where she honed her relationship management and business development skills. Shelagh holds a B.Sc. in Applied Health Sciences from the University of Waterloo and is a Certified Professional in Health Information & Management Systems (CPHIMS-CA). She has held a number of Board positions at the local, national and international levels including: Director, Mississauga-Halton Local Health Integration Network; Vice Chair, SNOMED International (formerly IHTSDO); and President, COACH: Canada’s Health Informatics Association.