Trainees

Laura Schummers, ScM, ScD, Postdoctoral Fellow (Department of Family Practice, UBC)

Other Affiliations:

Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Family Practice, UBC
Women’s Health Research Institute (Affiliate Member)
Postdoctoral Trainee, ICES McMaster
CIHR Patient-Oriented Research Leadership Trainee

Research Interests:

Reproductive and perinatal population health
• Reproductive and perinatal health services and policy
• Patient-oriented research
• Population-based administrative health data

Dr. Laura Schummers, ScD, is a reproductive and perinatal epidemiologist. After completing her Doctor of Science in epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health, Dr. Schummers joined the Contraception and Abortion Research Team in the Department of Family Practice at UBC as a postdoctoral fellow. Dr. Schummers’s research uses large population-based administrative health databases to examine health services, policy, and clinical research questions related to women’s reproductive and perinatal health and integrated knowledge translation methods to translate findings to practice and policy. She holds a CIHR Patient-Oriented Research Leadership award and a Research Trainee award from the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research and is a Trainee with ICES McMaster. Her current work focuses on the impact of the Canada’s uniquely deregulated policies for the medical abortion drug mifepristone on abortion access, outcomes, and costs, optimal pregnancy spacing for high-risk obstetric populations, and postpartum opioid prescribing.

Current Research Projects:

The CART Mife-Outcomes study: Using linked health administrative data to define health system outcomes, costs and access to abortion before and after the sea-change shift in 2017 of medical abortion practice. Access and outcomes will be comprehensively measured and related to varied provincial health systems and to the outcomes and systems in other countries.

Interpregnancy Interval and Pregnancy Outcomes: Pregnancies following short interpregnancy intervals (conceived within 12 or 18 months of a prior delivery) are linked with increased risks of adverse pregnancy outcomes, including preterm birth, poor fetal growth leading to small-for-gestational age birth or low birthweight, and infant death. Current North American guidelines recommend that women wait a minimum of 18 months before becoming pregnant again, while the World Health Organization advises waiting at least 24 months. As preventing short interpregnancy intervals may be a strategy to reduce the burden of adverse fetal and infant outcomes, short interpregnancy intervals (<18 months) are monitored as a public health indicator in many countries across the globe, including the US.

In this study, we will identify the optimal interpregnancy interval range for three high-risk obstetric populations that currently lack evidence to inform pregnancy spacing decisions. The findings of this study will inform pregnancy spacing recommendations to optimize healthy pregnancy and fetal and infant outcomes in these high-risk obstetric populations that most need targeted evidence to support pregnancy spacing decision-making. Read more here.

Early pregnancy loss incidence in high income settings: a systematic review: Early pregnancy loss (unintended pregnancy loss before 20 completed weeks of gestation) is a common adverse pregnancy outcome, with previous evidence reporting incidence ranging from 10% to 30% of detected pregnancies. The objective of this systematic review is to determine the incidence and range of early pregnancy loss in contemporary pregnant populations based on studies with good internal and external validity. Findings may be useful for clinical counseling in pre-conception and family planning settings, and for people who experience an early pregnancy loss.

To learn more about Dr. Schummers’s research and projects, please visit here.

Students/Trainee Supervision:

  • Niki Oveisi, Master of Public Health student, School of Population and Public Health, UBC
  • Mika Ohtsuka, Master of Public Health, School of Population and Public Health, UBC
  • Suzie Maginley, PhD candidate, School of Population and Public Health, UBC

View Publications on PubMed

View Publications on Google Scholar

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Madeleine Ennis, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow (Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, UBC)

Dr. Madeleine Ennis, PhD, received her BSc in Health Science from Bishop’s University (Sherbrooke, Quebec) in 2015. She then returned to her home province of British Columbia for her MSc in Reproductive and Developmental Sciences at the University of British Columbia. Under the supervision of Dr Rajavel Elango, Dr. Ennis completed 3 research projects focused on improving our understanding of nutrition during pregnancy. During this time, she transferred to her PhD, and focused her academic career on improving female reproductive health and education. Currently Dr. Ennis is a Postdoctoral Fellow, under the supervision of Dr. Regina Renner, with the Contraceptive and Abortion Research Team. As well, She is a part-time instructor at the British Columbia Institute of Technology.

Current Research Projects:

Dr Ennis' primary research project is the Canadian Abortion Provider Survey (CAPS). Funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, this study aims to better understand the current workforce (including administrators, nurse practitioners and physicians), quality of abortion care and stigma and resilience experienced by Canadian health care professionals providing abortion care in 2019. To learn more about the survey, please click here.

View Dr. Ennis' Publications Here


 

Andrea Carson, PhD (MA, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Nursing, Dalhousie University)

Research Interests:

• Reproductive justice
• Health equity
• Public health
• Biomedicalization
• Family planning (contraception, abortion, fertility treatment)

Dr. Andrea (Andie) Carson, PhD, is a postdoctoral fellow at the School of Nursing, Dalhousie University. She received her PhD in Public Health Science from the University of Toronto in November 2019. Andrea’s research applies sociological theories and qualitative methods to explore and improve individuals' experiences with reproductive health services in Canada. Andrea is a 2020-2021 Transdisciplinary Understanding and Training on Research Primary Health Care (TUTOR-PHC) trainee.

Current Research Projects:

The Canadian NP Mifepristone Implementation Study: Medication abortion via the drug mifepristone is a safe, effective practice available in over 60 countries. In 2017 Canadian nursing regulators and Health Canada implemented changes that would allow nurse practitioners (NPs) to provide mifepristone. This study seeks to understand the experiences of NPs with medication abortion in order to improve the implementation of this practice amongst NPs, with the potential to improve access for marginalized, rural and remote communities in Canada. Read more here.

View Dr. Carson's Publications Here

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Martha Paynter, RN, PhDc (Dalhousie University)

Other Affiliations:

Research Scholar, Health Law Institute, Schulich School of Law

Research Interests:

• Reproductive health, criminalization and prison abolition
• Access to abortion and reproductive health services
• Human milk donation and sharing

Martha Paynter, RN, is a registered nurse practicing in abortion and postpartum care in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She is a PhD Candidate in Nursing at Dalhousie University where her research is situated at the intersection of criminalization and reproductive health. Martha’s doctoral research is supported by the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation, CIHR Banting-Best Canadian Doctoral Scholarship, the Killam Predoctoral Scholarship, the Canadian Nurses Foundation, Dalhousie University and the IWK Health Centre

In 2012, she founded Wellness Within, a non-profit organization for health and justice for people experiencing criminalization. WW provides doula support to people experiencing incarceration and education to health professionals and the public about criminalization as a structural determinant of health. WW is a national leader in advocacy for prison abolition, reproductive justice and health equity.

Current Research Projects:

The Canadian NP Mifepristone Implementation Study: Medication abortion via the drug mifepristone is a safe, effective practice available in over 60 countries. In 2017 Canadian nursing regulators and Health Canada implemented changes that would allow nurse practitioners (NPs) to provide mifepristone. This study seeks to understand the experiences of NPs with medication abortion in order to improve the implementation of this practice amongst NPs, with the potential to improve access for marginalized, rural and remote communities in Canada. Read more here.

To learn more about Martha’s research and projects, please visit: https://marthapaynter.ca/

View Martha's Publications here

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Dahn Jeong, MSc, PhD Student (School of Population and Public Health, UBC)

Dahn Jeong, MSc, is a doctoral student at the school of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia. Dahn has a BSc in biomedical science and health science with honours, and a MSc in Epidemiology from the University of Ottawa. As a graduate research assistant at CART, Dahn is working on the quantitative analysis of Mifepristone Implementation surveys that explored constructs related to diffusion of innovation and behaviour change frameworks that examined the barriers and facilitators to implementing mifepristone in Canada. Dahn also supports the CAPS-CPCA, Canada’s online community of practice for health professionals interested to provide mifepristone hosted by CART-GRAC.

View Dahn’s Publications Here

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Kate Wahl, MSc, PhD Student (Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, UBC) 

Research Interests:

• Knowledge translation in health policy settings
• Access to abortion and reproductive health services
• Health equity for people with endometriosis

Kate Wahl, MSc, is a researcher interested in new strategies for moving evidence into health policy and practice. As a PhD student in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the University of British Columbia, she uses qualitative methods to develop and evaluate approaches for sharing research evidence with stakeholders including the public, healthcare providers, and policy makers. Her current focus is on advancing the health of women and gender diverse people, and she is investigating patient decision aids, education programs, and storytelling in this context. Her doctoral research is supported by a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship and the Women’s Health Research Institute.

To learn more about her research and projects, please visit: www.katewahl.com

Current Research Projects:

Exploration of stories as a tool for knowledge translation with decision makers: It is vital for the well-being of Canadians that the healthcare system operates using the most up-to-date information. However, it can take years for governments to integrate new discoveries into health policy. One way to solve this problem may be to share research evidence about the healthcare system using real-life stories of Canadians accessing the system. We will interview a group of provincial and federal policy makers about how stories affect their decision-making on reproductive and sexual health. Next, we will use what we learn to help ask Canadians about their experiences accessing reproductive and sexual healthcare, and turn these experiences into stories for policy makers. The last step will be to test the preliminary effect of stories on policy makers’ knowledge, attitudes, and intentions.

View Kate’s publications here

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Abdulai Abdul-Fatawu, RN, MSc, Ph.D (c) (School of Nursing, UBC) 

Abdul-Fatawu Abdulai, BScN, MSc, is a doctoral candidate at the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia. Abdulai has a BScN and an MSc in Telemedicine & eHealth from the Univerity of Ghana and the University of Tromso in Norway, respectively. As a Graduate Research Assistant at CART, Abdulai is working on the quantitative analysis of the Mifepristone Implementation Survey and the Nursing Practitioner Mife Survey. Abdulai also supports the CAPS-CPCA, Canada’s online community of practice for health professionals interested to provide mifepristone hosted by CART-GRAC. He is also working on updating the federal and provincial guidelines for Mifegymiso on the CAPS-CPCA platform


 

Suzie Maginley, MSc, PhD Student (School of Population and Public Health & Department of Family Practice, UBC)


Emma Cameron, B.Sc (Hons), MA Health Promotion Candidate (Dalhousie University)

Emma Cameron, B.Sc (Hons), is a Master’s student at the School of Health and Human Performance at Dalhousie University and holds a BSc (honours) in Psychology. Emma’s research focuses on access to sexual and reproductive healthcare for refugee and asylum-seeking women in Canada and Europe. As a graduate research assistant at CART, Emma is helping to collect and analyze qualitative data on the Canadian Nurse Practitioner Mifepristone Implementation Study, which seeks to understand the experiences of nurse practitioners who do and do not provide medical abortion.

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Ziwa Yu, MScN (Dalhousie University)

Ziwa Yu, MScN, is a Registered Nurse from China and completed her Master’s degree at the School of Nursing, Dalhousie University. Ziwa is a Research Assistant at the CART Canadian Nurse Practitioner Mifepristone Implementation Study, working on the survey tracking and quantitative data management to measure NP demographics including practice characteristics, NP adoption of mifepristone, and more.


Claire Styffe, BA &Sc., MPH student (School of Population and Public Health, UBC) 

Claire Styffe, BA &Sc., is a Master of Public Health student at the University of British Columbia, and is completing a practicum with CART. She is working on the quantitative analysis of The Canadian Abortion Provider Survey with a particular focus on workforce demographics.


Kira Knight, BSc. (Global Resource Systems, UBC) 

Kira Knight (she/her/hers),BSc., is a Work Learn Research Assistant who recently graduated from the University of British Columbia focusing on Sexual Health. Her current roles at CART include helping analyze qualitative data on the Canadian Abortion Provider Survey. As well as assisting Dr. Wendy Norman in conducting a systematic review looking to identify the antecedent factors that are associated with unintended pregnancies in high income countries.


Michaela Shulman, Medical student (University of Montreal) 

Michaela Shulman, Medical student, is a third-year medical student at the University of Montreal with a strong interest in Women’s Health & Obstetrics. Her current role at CART includes working on a systematic review which aims to identify the antecedent factors associated with unintended pregnancy in high income countries. A clear understanding of these potentially addressable risk factors will help modify health policies to aid in the prevention of unintended pregnancy.


Mahan Maazi, BSc student, (IntSci, Faculty of Science, UBC) 

Mahan Maazi, BSc student, is currently working on the 2019 Canadian Abortion Provider Survey (CAPS) as a Work Learn student. Since May, he has helped develop the survey by testing and piloting on REDCap, assisting with survey recruitment. He is currently working on data collection, input, analysis and monitoring. Mahan's work will support the CAPS survey objectives to improve abortion care quality and provide valuable insight to advocate for abortion services.


 

Current Student:

 

Past Students:

Natalia Malagon (BCCHR Institue, Mini Med Summer Student //  SFU Faculty of Science)

Eric Blachut (McGill University Faculty of Arts, Summer Student)

Suhani Thakore (UBC Faculty of Medicine, Summer Student)

Carmen Wong (UBC Faculty of Science, Summer Student)

Angie Xiong (UBC Faculty of Medicine, Summer Student)

Adriana Mejia-French (UBC Faculty of Medicine, Summer Student)

Sandeep Chatha (UBC Faculty of Medicine, Summer Student)

Emily Teng (University of California, Los Angeles Faculty of Economics, Summer Student)

Marek Blachut (University College London Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Summer Student)

Hannah Rahim (University of Calgary Faculty of Health Sciences, Summer Student)

Marabeth Kramer (UBC Faculty of Medicine, Summer Student)

Current Volunteers:

 

Past Volunteers:

Brian William Vickers 

Mani Asgharpour

Sofia Villarreal

Tina Gao (UBC Faculty of Science)

Winnie Lee (UBC Faculty of Medicine)

The Contraception Access Research Student Initiative (CARSI) is a medical student collaboration within CART-GRAC. This group was founded by UBC medical students interested in reproductive health and family planning. Sharing the same goals developed by CART-GRAC, CARSI hopes to support women’s equitable access to high-quality family planning knowledge, methods, and services.

Students involved in CARSI have the opportunity to develop and execute their own research questions under the guidance of expert scholars within CART-GRAC. This experience encourages medical students to develop both clinician and scientist skills through managing independent projects, and collaborating with community, academic and healthcare experts. In addition, involvement with CARSI promotes the CanMED competencies of Medical Expert, Communicator, Collaborator, Health Advocate, Scholar, and Professional.

Lingsa Jia (CARSI Team Co-Lead, UBC Faculty of Medicine)

Ann Hsu-Lin (CARSI Team Co-Lead, UBC Faculty of Medicine)

April Lu (CARSI Team Co-Lead, UBC Faculty of Medicine)

Elisabeth De Marchi (UBC Faculty of Medicine)

Jennifer Clune (UBC Faculty of Medicine)

Sara Lynskey (UBC Faculty of Medicine)

Ruphen Shaw (UBC Faculty of Medicine)