Finding a Cure for Cancer

“Probably the best advice I received was from my PhD advisor. He simply stressed that you should always do quality work and keep in mind that society is what makes it possible for us to have all this fun in the lab. At some point, you need to think about how you can repay that debt.” Dr. Jim Allison

More on Meet the Carousing, Harmonica-Playing Texan Who Won a Nobel for his Cancer Breakthrough via Wired.

#JimAllison #Immunotherapy #Breakthrough

Ten Articles of Interest: Medical Education

CHES recently distributed a collection of medical education article abstracts to members! “We thank Dr. Gisèle Bourgeois-Law who has created these summaries for the education community at the Island Medical Program. While these articles have a medical education focus, we are using this opportunity to explore the value of such an initiative to our larger CHES community. Article themes include topics such as: feedback and mindfulness, those by local/BC educators, those relevant to a distributed medical program, and those with new ideas. Our aim is to include a variety of quantitative and qualitative research articles, review articles, and concept articles, some of which contain an interesting editorial or commentary. This summary is not meant to be comprehensive, nor to include everything of potential interest.”

If you would like to nominate an article for future inclusion or have any questions, please email us at

Drone-Equipped Hospitals

drone-powered-hospital-leo-a-daly_dezeen_2364_col_7-1704x959.jpg“Architecture and engineering firm Leo A Daly has proposed building ‘drone-powered’ hospitals in hurricane-prone areas, which could continue operating even when roads are closed or destroyed.

Egea points out that, with roads made unusable by the hurricane, staff, family members and suppliers couldn’t always reach hospitals, in some cases leaving patients cut off from care, medication, food and air conditioning.

‘When barges finally began entering the port with supplies, there were still cases where they were unable to get those supplies to those who needed it, including the elderly and critical patients who can’t move from those facilities,’ he said.

‘I thought, why couldn’t we bypass all that and have whatever is in the barges taken directly to the hospitals, and directly to patients?'”

More on Drone-equipped hospitals could be resilient to disasters via dezeen.

#Innovation #Drone #Hospitals

The Architecture of Habits

 “All big things come from small beginnings. The seed of every habit is a single, tiny decision. But as that decision is repeated, a habit sprouts and grows stronger. Roots entrench themselves and branches grow. The task of breaking a bad habit is like uprooting a powerful oak within us. And the task of building a good habit is like cultivating a delicate flower one day at a time.” ― James Clear

Women’s Reproductive Health & Justice

infographic-laws-policies.jpg“One of the issues for me around abortion is that no one discusses it. The lack of understanding about the people who do abortions and the patients who get abortions is a problem as well as the lack of understanding about how many women get abortions and how common it is. Anything that can help dispel myths, that can bring abortion to the dinner table conversation, that can bring abortion topics into normal day-to-day life is important.”  Dr. Deborah Oyer, Family Medicine Physician

Additional resources on the topic:
Our Bodies Our Doctors (2019) documentary on the experience of family physicians, OBGYNs, and healthcare professionals who provide safe abortion care.
Where do abortion rights in Canada stand today? via CBC News
Abortion barriers in Canada are back in spotlight following passage of abortion bans in U.S. (2019) via CBC
Healthlink BC: Abortion
Medical Students for Choice
A Broad Vision for Reproductive Justice (2017) via Action Canada for Sexual Health & Rights

Abbotsford-Mission Pediatrics Rotation

Greetings Residents!

Dr. Sinha and I have designed a Pediatrics rotation expectations and skills document to assist you in navigating the learning experience. In addition to the expectations outlined, UBC’s learning objectives are detailed on the back to help guide you in completing your ITAR and field notes. Access the document here.

For the rotation, you’ll also need to complete a short assignment that includes a clinical evidence-based question and summary. Visit our group Pediatrics Rotation PICO Table to summarize your case.

You can find both these documents under the Residents tab. Scroll down to Pediatrics and access from there.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Warm regards,


Internet Platforms & Public Health

“Zeynep Tufekci, the UNC scholar who is one of the world’s foremost experts on the impact of emerging technology in politics, has observed that internet platforms enable the powerful to affect a new kind of censorship. Instead of denying access to communications and information, bad actors can now use internet platforms to confuse a population, drowning them in nonsense. In her book, Twitter and Tear Gas, she asserts that ‘inundating audiences with information, producing distractions to dilute their attention and focus, delegitimizing media that provide accurate information (whether credible mass media or online media), deliberately sowing confusion, fear, and doubt by aggressively questioning credibility (with or without evidence, since what matters is creating doubt, not proving a point), creating or claiming hoaxes, or generating harassment campaigns designed to make it harder for credible conduits of information to operate, especially on social media which tends to be harder for a government to control like mass media.’ Use of internet platforms in this manner undermines democracy in a way that cannot be fixed by moderators searching for fake news or hate speech.”

Roger McNamee, Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe

More on Zucked: Early Facebook Investor Roger McNamee on How the Company Became a Threat to Democracy via podcast.

More on We Need a Digital Infrastructure that Serves Humanity, says techno-sociologist by Dr. Zeynep Tufekci via Berkeley Talks.

AMEE Webinar: The Anatomy of a Wicked Problem

This free webinar forms part of a guest blog by Professor Stewart Mennin on the topic:

The Anatomy of a Wicked Problem
Wednesday 23 October 2019 at 13:00 (1pm) BST/UK.

The AMEE webinars are currently free of charge. You can view the webinar here when the presentation starts.

Wicked Problem is a pattern in any situation that causes difficulties for which there are no obvious, available and known solutions. Any problem that is extreme, intractable, massively entangled, and complex. For example, changing the pattern of the curriculum of a medical school or institution with the goal of improving people’s lives.

The advantage of knowing the anatomy of complex wicked problems is that it is similar in all wicked problems regardless of context.  A distinction is made between a larger system-wide wicked problem and a sticky issue embedded in a wicked problem.

A sticky issue is something upon which we are focused currently and with which we are engaged.  For example, establishing a consistent institution-wide assessment of learning as part of a large curriculum change.  Three illustrations depict the anatomy of a wicked and a sticky issue. This webinar is for all teachers, students, administrators and communities of health professionals who deal with wicked problems and sticky issues in their day-to-day work lives.

Places are limited, so please connect early to avoid disappointment.

Unmet Health & Social Care Needs of Older Caregivers

“There has been rapid growth in older caregivers (OCs) age 65+ in the UK. Playing a fundamental role in the life of their care-recipient, helping to sustain preferred place of care, with many delivering over 50 hours of weekly care. OCs may themselves have age and caring role associated health issues. Spending cuts mean fewer now qualify for support. Understanding the breadth and extent of OCs unmet needs can inform support to help OCs maintain their wellbeing and caring role. In total 10 of 4407 identified records satisfied the inclusion criteria. Eight unmet need domains were identified, many were interrelated and displayed interplay: psychosocial, service, informational, constancy of care, future care planning, physical health issues, reluctance to utilise services, and financial needs.”

The Unmet Health and Social Care Needs of Older Caregivers: A Systematic Review (2019) by Khan et al. via BMJ Supportive & Palliative.