Quality Academy


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We have an excellent group of dedicated experts who are both passionate and knowledgeable about their areas of expertise related to improving the quality of care. These faculty members will provide direct teaching and be available for advice to program participants. As well, several faculty will also serve as mentors who will be paired with a group of participants to provide ongoing one-to-one support.

Executive Director, Quality & Patient Safety and Infection Prevention and Control
Vancouver Coastal Health

Allison is a Human Factors Specialist with strong experience in applying engineering and psychology principles on a variety of large and small projects relating to health care. She currently works part-time at Vancouver Coastal Health as a Human Factors Specialist in Quality and Patient Safety, and independently consults on Human Factors principles to a variety of industries in Vancouver, British Columbia, and across Canada. Committed to safety and quality of care, Allison’s goal and motivation is to introduce and incorporate human factors engineering principles into health care in British Columbia.

Executive Director, Learning, Analytics & Strategic Initiatives
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Andrew joined the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council in July 2009. Prior to joining the Council, he spent several years working in the biotechnology industry, with the BC Cancer Research Centre and the BC Ministry of Health Services.

Andrew’s passion for patient safety and quality improvement, accompanied by his proven project management abilities, assists the Council in achieving its mandate of fostering quality improvement across the continuum of care. He successfully leads complex initiatives and works to develop collaborative partnerships with health system stakeholders in order to equip people at all levels of the system with the knowledge and skills needed for sustained change. He is particularly interested in the ongoing development of learning opportunities for quality improvement, mechanisms of innovation, the use of data for improvement and public accountability of the health care system. Andrew leads the Council’s measurement activities, strategic initiatives and learning programs such as the Quality Academy, the Quality Forum and Quality Café.

Andrew holds a Master’s in Health Administration from the University of British Columbia and a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology from the University of Victoria.

Leader, Health System Improvement
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

April joined the Council in April 2019. Prior to joining the Council, she worked at Northern Health in a variety of roles that included quality process improvement, facilitation, mentorship, coaching and most recently executive leadership. She is also a part-time instructor at the College of New Caledonia in Prince George. Her background is in business and prior to joining health care she managed the Northern Undergraduate Student Society at the University of Northern BC (UNBC) for more than 16 years. During that time, she oversaw all aspects of the organization including the development, implementation and operations of the Student Centre. April’s passions include data-informed quality improvement, facilitation, and fostering change in our health care system by empowering people to challenge the norm. She brings professionalism, humour and strong communication to all aspects of her work.

April holds a Master of Arts in Leadership with a Health Specialization from Royal Roads University and a Bachelor of Commerce from UNBC. She is a graduate of BCPSQC’s Quality Academy and has her Lean Green Belt.

Director, Analytics & Strategic Initiatives
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Ben joined the Council in 2014, starting as a Quality Leader supporting clinical improvement initiatives before becoming Director of the Council’s Patient & Public Engagement team, which supports the Patient Voices Network. In 2018 he moved to a new role leading the Analytics & Strategic Initiatives team.

Ben has always been passionate about numbers, starting at an early age devouring box scores in the newspaper. He has a specific interest in helping turn data into knowledge to support quality improvement in BC’s health system. Through his experiences Ben has seen the value of combining numbers with contextual information to be able to tell a story that inspires action. Ben holds a Master of Health Administration from
Dalhousie University and a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a joint major in Business and Geography, from Simon Fraser University.

Improvement Associates Ltd.

Bruce co-founded Improvement Associates in 2000 and has worked primarily on the improvement of healthcare. He is Collaborative Director for the Canadian Collaborative to Improve Patient Care and Safety in the ICU, and advises on a number of healthcare improvement initiatives. He is a graduate of Trent University, the Banff School of Advanced Management and holds an MBA from IMD in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Chief Executive Officer
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Christina has a strong background in improvement work leading collaboratives on topics such as medication reconciliation, prevention of surgical site infection and MRSA, and improved care for acute myocardial infarction. A certified Faculty member with the Institute for Healthcare Communication, she also served as a key member of the National Working Group, which developed Pan-Canadian Disclosure Guidelines. In her current role, Christina has a particular interest in social movement theory and the mobilization of energy to facilitate large-scale change. Christina is currently an EXTRA Fellow with the Canadian Health Services Research Foundation.

Executive Director, Health System Improvement & Engagement
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Colleen joined the Council in 2014 as a Quality Leader supporting clinical improvement initiatives. Prior to this, she led improvement efforts across the continuum of care through her role as the Manager of Quality and Patient Safety for Interior Health West and Patient Experience for Interior Health (IH).

Colleen’s passion is to work with health care professionals at the point of care to facilitate system-level improvements. As part of this, she led the IH Diabetes Collaborative. Along with her team, Colleen also designed the quality improvement and patient safety (QIPS) unit leader program, which focused on building quality improvement capacity at the point of care. In addition, she engaged with partners to develop the structure for IH Local Quality Committees and the framework for quality reviews. Previously she also served as IH’s Leader, Physician Engagement, where she collaborated with physicians on quality improvement initiatives in the lab, operating room, medical device reprocessing, obstetrics and critical care.

Colleen holds a Master of Information Studies and a Master of Health Administration from the University of British Columbia. She has completed training in quality improvement and the collaborative breakthrough series through the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. Colleen also has her Green and Black Belt in Lean Health Care from the Canadian Logistics Institute.

Communications Specialist
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Courtney joined the Council in January 2018 as a Communications Specialist. Her professional background includes marketing, content strategy and corporate communications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Simon Fraser University and a Master of Arts in Communication with a focus on children’s health and gamification.

Leader, Learning & Capability Development
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Denise joined the Council as a Leader on the Learning & Capability Development team in August 2019. Prior to this, Denise spent 13 years at Interior Health, most recently as a change management specialist, organizational development consultant, and leadership development facilitator and coach.

Denise is focused on making a difference to help others succeed in their ability to manage change more effectively. As a lifelong learner, Denise is passionate about creating an environment that honours experience, while supporting learning that happens in a meaningful and practical way. Denise believes action and learning are closely connected and infuses a powerful sense of purpose and meaning into the learning process: a key component to embracing and adopting change.

Denise’s extensive experience includes program development, training and coaching employees, and facilitating organization-wide change. Denise holds a Master of Education, specialized in Work and Learning, a BA in sociology, and certifications in change management and leadership development. Denise is also a Chartered Professional of Human Resources (CPHR).

Data Analyst, Analytics & Strategic Initiatives
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Eric joined the Council in February 2014 as a Health Data Analyst. Eric has a strong interest in healthcare transformation and quality improvement. He is keen on using health information to story-tell and drive improvement work. He supports a variety of the organization’s initiatives including Clinical Care Management, Learning & Strategic Initiatives, and the Clear project. Eric graduated with a BSc in Health Information Science from the University of Victoria. Prior to working with the Council, he did similar improvement work as a Metrics Analyst at Island Health.

Centre for Clinical Epidemiology and Evaluation

Francois Dionne is based at the Centre for Clinical Epidemiology and Evaluation in the Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Dr. Dionne completed his doctoral training in the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia, and also holds a Master’s degree in Business from UBC. The focus of his work is on the application of methods to support priority setting and resource allocation decision-making in health care. He has consulted widely with health care and government organizations across Canada over the last six years and is one of Canada’s leading experts in the application of multi-criteria decision analysis in health care.

SSC Liason, Specialist Services Committee
Doctors of BC

Geoff works with the SSC to support the delivery of specialist services through facility-based physician engagement, enhancing specialist services, and advancing quality improvement. Geoff has an extensive amount of improvement knowledge, having previously worked as a quality leader with the Health System Improvement team at the Council and a quality improvement consultant in surgery for Interior Health where he led the implementation of the surgical checklist for the region.

Geoff is an RN with an emergency nursing certification and worked throughout Western Canada and Western United States in emergency and intensive care units. He is a graduate from the BCPSQC Quality Academy, completed the collaborative breakthrough series through the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and holds a Fellowship from the International Society for Quality in Health Care. Geoff has also been a certified private pilot for over 20 years.

Executive Coach, Trainer and HR Consultant
Helen Wale Coaching and Human Resources

Helen is a Human Resources professional and Executive Coach with over 23 years of experience in a variety of professional and leadership positions within the public healthcare systems in both Canada and the UK. She is also a licensed trainer for Coaching Out of the Box®. As an executive coach, Helen has supported individuals progressing through the BC Health Authorities Experience Linx program as well as coaching individuals from a wide range of industries and sectors.

Helen holds a Master’s degree in Human Resource Management from De Montfort University (Leicester, UK) and a Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching from Royal Roads University. Specializing in leadership, business coaching and career transition, Helen has a particular interest in developing individuals, and working with them to help achieve their goals and aspirations.

Engagement Leader, Patient & Public Engagement
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Jami joined the Council in February 2016, where she brings her passion for engaging people to her role as an Engagement Leader for the Fraser Valley Region. Prior to joining the Council, she led the communications and engagement strategy for the largest provider of seniors housing in British Columbia, Retirement Concepts. Before RC, she spent 10 years at Fraser Health leading a multidisciplinary team focused on creating healthier communities.

Throughout her career, Jami has used her enthusiasm and experience to create cutting-edge partnerships alongside health care providers, the public, government leaders and community stakeholders. These partnerships increased collaboration and a shared responsibility for better health across British Columbia.

Jami holds a Master’s in Professional Communication from Royal Roads University, a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Western Washington University, and is a certified trainer in Public Participation and LEAN Healthcare.

Improvement Associates Ltd.

Leanne Couves co-founded Improvement Associates in 2000, fueled by a desire to improve how we experience healthcare. She brings 20 years of experience of leading and supporting improvement initiatives in the healthcare system.

Leanne has designed and supported national and provincial Collaboratives and Action Series, taught at over 100 face-to-face and virtual Learning Sessions and has led the writing of several improvement guides. Leanne is a Faculty member with the Canadian ICU Collaborative and the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council’s (BCPSQC) Quality Academy professional development programs, where she coaches healthcare professionals and teams in applying the art and science of improvement science to their local initiatives. She is also certified in delivering the Strength Deployment Inventory (SDI) assessment tool to help build better teams and manage conflict.

Leanne’s education includes a Bachelor of Commerce degree and a Certificate in Adult and Continuing Education, both from the University of Alberta. In her spare time, she volunteers on community Boards, coaches youth sport and spends time with her active family.
She loves bringing people together, working towards a shared purpose and exploring new ideas, theories and possibilities.

Martin Wale Consulting

Adjunct Professor
University of British Columbia

Adjunct Professor
University of Victoria

Dr. Martin Wale is a UK-trained microbiologist and public health doctor, and was an inaugural Fellow of the NHS Institute for Innovation & Improvement. He was recruited to Canada in 2009 to lead the infection control System Wide Initiative in Island Health (then VIHA), subsequently moving through other medical leadership roles in Island Health, including Deputy CMO, and Interim VP Med and CMO. In 2015, he started the BC Medical Quality Initiative for the BC Ministry of Health, and in 2017 was seconded to the Ministry to conduct a review of radiology in BC, and advise on implementation of the recommendations.

Since leaving in June 2018, Martin has become freelance, starting his own consulting business and working with UBC, UVic, and Doctors of BC. He has been Faculty for BCPSQC’s Quality Academy and Clinician Quality Academy since their inception, and Faculty for the Canadian Patient Safety Officers’ Course since 2012.

Lead Consultant
Merge Consulting

Melanie has a breadth of experience facilitating innovative and system-wide collaborations to improve quality. Specializing in measurement, Melanie has worked with national, provincial and local initiatives to define indicators and measurement systems. Melanie’s main focus is appropriate data display and ensuring indicator results are meaningful to all levels of staff and leadership. In previous roles with Saskatchewan’s Health Quality Council and the the BC Patient Safety and Quality Council, Melanie led projects in a variety of care areas including surgery, ICU, wait times for cancer care, and chronic disease care in the community. She has also been instrumental in designing education programs for staff and physicians. Melanie now divides her time between consulting in the health care and social services sectors and works as Quality Leader for BC Mental Health and Addictions Services.

Geriatrician/Chief of Staff
West Coast General Hospital

Dr. Dorothy ‘Sam’ Williams is a Geriatrician /Chief of Staff at West Coast General Hospital in Port Alberni and Chair of the Health Authority Medical Advisory Committee for Island Health. She has been working as a Geriatrician for Island Health since 2000. She is a clinical instructor with the Department of Medicine UBC and the Island Medical Program.

Dr. Williams has a particular interest in Physician Health Issues; and is a member of the Physician Health Program ‘Physician Advocating Wellness’ groups in BC. She also chairs the Physician Health Program Steering Committee of Doctors of BC. In addition, how we communicate with each other and teams with a focus on building a culture of safety is of particular interest.

Leader, Health System Improvement
BC Patient Safety & Quality Council

Sarah joined the Council in April 2019. Prior to joining the Council, she worked at Providence Health Care in positions ranging from clinical nursing and clinical research to her most recent role in the last few years as Leader for Patient Safety. Originally from Wellington, New Zealand, she moved to Vancouver in 2007 to “see the other side of the world” and quickly fell in love with the West Coast. As a registered nurse, Sarah has worked in surgical and critical care environments, which then morphed into a passion for clinical research, quality improvement, high reliability systems and complexity science.

Sarah’s passion lies in supporting people to see and do things differently, to challenge the status quo, and rather than only looking for where things go wrong, to learn from what makes things go right and how many times this can be replicated. She’s specifically interested in how we hold ourselves accountable for ensuring we support teams to practice in a psychologically safe environment that leads to safer and patient-partnered care. She has also supported and led numerous safety-focused quality improvement initiatives and research studies.

Sarah holds a Master of Nursing Science from the University of Saskatchewan and completed the Patient Safety Officer Course through the Canadian Patient Safety Institute. She is a graduate of BCPSQC’s Quality Academy and has completed training in critical incident analysis.

Director, Patient Safety
Interior Health Authority

Shari joined Interior Health in March 2019 as Director, Patient Safety. Her portfolio includes patient safety investigations, Patient Care Quality Office and support for Adult Guardianship within the region. Prior to this, she worked at the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council in various roles most recently as Director, Learning & Capability Development. She is a Registered Respiratory Therapist by professional background with over 15 years of clinical experience, and received an MA in Learning & Technology from Royal Roads University in 2011.

She is a BCPSQC Quality Academy graduate, completed a program for Large Scale Change with the UK’s National Health Service in 2012, and has received fellowships from the Canadian Society of Respiratory Therapists (2010) and the International Society for Quality in Healthcare (2017). She holds an adjunct faculty appointment within the Department of Allied Health, Faculty of Science at Thompson Rivers University.

Shari has a wide range of interests related to learning, safety and health improvement including behavioural insights, gamification, research, mobile technology, disclosure, simulation, social movement theory, large scale change, and systems thinking.

Physician Quality Improvement (PQI) Consultant
Interior Health

Wrae has a breadth of clinical and QI Knowledge and skill, and has a particular interest in the area of; communication, resilience and high reliability in health care. Wrae is a fellow of the Canadian Society of Respiratory Therapy with a MSc in Human Factors and Systems Safety from Lund University in Sweden. Wrae’s current role within Interior Health (Quality) is part of the Provincial PQI Initiative, (funded by the Specialist Services Committee-SSC), to support Physicians to lead Quality Initiatives within their workplaces.