Meet our Collaborative

Researchers, healthcare providers, administrators, and patient/family advisors, representing palliative care, oncology, and family medicine 

PaCES Executive

Ayn Sinnarajah photo

Aynharan Sinnarajah

Dr. Aynharan Sinnarajah is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Palliative Medicine, Department of Oncology at the University of Calgary. He works as a physician consultant in Palliative Medicine, and also as a physician consultant in Clinical Informatics, Alberta Health Services. His research interests focus on health services research within palliative care.   

Jessica Simon photo

Jessica Simon

Dr. Jessica Simon is an Associate Professor and Head of the Division of Palliative Medicine at the University of Calgary. She is the Physician Consultant for Advance Care Planning and Goals of Care in the Calgary Zone of Alberta Health Services. Clinically, she works as a palliative care physician in Calgary's hospitals. Her research focuses on advance care planning and early palliative care.

Marc Kerba photo

Marc Kerba

Dr. Marc Kerba is a gastrointestinal, lung and palliative radiation oncologist at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre and a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Oncology at the University of Calgary. Dr. Kerba's research interests include health services research in the provision of cancer services, clinical trials both at the local and national level, and initiatives aimed at improving care for patients with advanced cancer.  

Patricia Tang photo

Patricia Tang

Dr. Patricia Tang is a medical oncologist at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre and a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Oncology at the University of Calgary. Dr. Tang’s research interests are clinical trials, investigational new drugs, and health services. 

Amy Tan photo

Amy Tan

Dr. Amy Tan is an Associate Professor and academic family physician and hospice physician in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Calgary. Dr. Tan's research interests focus on empowering quality advance care planning in family medicine and other disciplines, supporting community-based primary palliative care, and effective teaching of shared decision-making with patients and families for medical learners at all stages of training. 

Sharon Watanabe photo

Sharon Watanabe

Dr. Sharon Watanabe is Director of the Department of Symptom Control and Palliative Care at the Cross Cancer Institute, Professor in the Department of Oncology, and Director of the Division of Palliative Care Medicine at the University of Alberta. Dr. Watanabe also co-leads the CancerControl Alberta Palliative and Supportive Care Tumour Team. Her research interests include early integration of palliative care into cancer care, symptom assessment, opioid administration, and palliative care consultation by telehealth.

Research Staff

Patricia Biondo headshot

Patricia Biondo

Patricia Biondo, PhD, is the Research Manager for the Division of Palliative Medicine, University of Calgary, and provides research management support for the PaCES project.

Madalene Earp headshot

Madalene Earp

Madalene Earp, PhD, is a Senior Research Associate with the Division of Palliative Medicine, University of Calgary, and provides methodological, analytics, statistical, grant and manuscript support for the PaCES project.

Shireen Kassam headshot

Shireen Kassam

Shireen Kassam is a Research Assistant with the Division of Palliative Medicine, University of Calgary, and leads data collection in Calgary for the PaCES evaluation study "Living With Colorectal Cancer: Patient and Caregiver Experience".

Crystal Beaumont headshot

Crystal Beaumont

Crystal Beaumont is a Research Assistant with the Division of Palliative Care Medicine, University of Alberta, and leads data collection in Edmonton for the PaCES evaluation study "Living With Colorectal Cancer: Patient and Caregiver Experience".

Jan Vandale photo

Janet Vandale

Janet Vandale is a Clinical Nurse Specialist with the Palliative Home Care program, Calgary Zone, Alberta Health Services, and provides early palliative care consultations for people living with advanced colorectal cancer as part of the PaCES program.

Our stakeholders

team photo

If PaCES was an animal, what animal would that be?

At a recent Collaborative meeting, we got people talking about what animal best represents PaCES. Here is what we heard...

"adaptable, smart, focused"

"makes people feel comfortable"

"peaceful, gently improves quality of life"

"slow and steady development but once fully developed, takes off quickly as a butterfly"

"many people each working on one small piece of a large project"

"sharp, loyal and compassionate"
"trying to get into the hen house"

"supportive, pouch"

"fuzzy, soft, moves slowly"

"has a presence, makes you feel like everything will be okay"

"many arms"
"reaches into many areas"

"wise, watching, silent, powerful, nocturnal"

"friendly, provides comfortable feeling, cross-cultural"

"is of service, nurturing"

"fascinating, difficult to see in the wild, little research on it because it is elusive, lives in difficult terrain, interested to learn about it"

"focused, calm and ready to act"

"early palliative care needs to come out of its shell"

"comes from a place of aspirations and hope for ‘magical’/good things"