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Engaging patients and community members in social interventions research

Day 1 (2/4) 4:15 - 5:30pm

Session Description

Lack of patient and community perspectives in the design and implementation of health care research has the potential to perpetuate inequities. Two pairs of academic researchers and experts with lived experience will share and reflect on their experiences working together on research projects.


Damon Francis, MD

Damon Francis, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Health Leads

Dr. Francis joined Health Leads after five years in the Alameda County Health Care Services Agency in the East San Francisco Bay Area, where he worked on all aspects of the Agency’s vision for “healthy people, places, policies and systems.” Dr. Francis is an assistant clinical professor at the University of California, San Francisco, where he completed medical school and residency in primary care internal medicine and served as chief resident for the internal medicine service at San Francisco General Hospital. His clinical experience since residency includes inpatient and outpatient practice in public, private, and academic settings, and he continues to provide urgent care at a community clinic in Oakland.

Framework slide: SIREN19_Francis.pdf

Handout: EngagingPatients_Handout.pdf


Rachel Smith, Patient Investigator, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center; Block Leader, Healthy Homes Block by Block

Andy F. Beck, MD

Andy F. Beck, MD, Associate Professor, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine; Divisions of General and Community Pediatrics and Hospital Medicine, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Dr. Beck strives to improve population health outcomes by identifying and responding to key social, economic, and environmental determinants of health. He is particularly interested in the intersection between neighborhood and health. He sees patients as a primary care and hospitalist pediatrician. For his efforts, he has been recognized with the Cincinnati Children's Junior Faculty Award for Service and Advocacy and has been recognized by the Cincinnati Business Courier as a member of the region's 40 under 40.

Alexander Zsager

Alexander Zsager, Patient Investigator, University of Toronto

Alex is a strong advocate for the homeless, with his own personal journey that took him from success to homelessness and back. He was a research team member with the MHCC at Home/Chez Soi project and is currently working as a researcher with Dixon Halls Out of the Cold project and St. Mikes Sparks project. Alex draws on his own lived experience in his role as an advisor / consultant, board member to several committees and organizations including the TC-LHIN, RNAO, Inner-City Family Health Team, Homeless Connect Toronto and the Toronto Alliance to End Homelessness just to name a few.

 Andrew Pinto, MD, CCFP, FRCPC, MSc

Andrew Pinto, MD, CCFP, FRCPC, MSc, Assistant Professor, Department of Family & Community Medicine and Faculty Medicine, University of Toronto

Dr. Pinto is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family & Community Medicine and Faculty Medicine and Adjunct Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. He is a Public Health and Preventive Medicine specialist and family physician at St. Michael’s Hospital, as well as a Scientist at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute. Dr. Pinto’s research is focused on evaluating costs and effectiveness of different models of primary health care and evaluating interventions on social determinants of health that occur at the overlap between primary care and public health.

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