Health Policy Council

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The Health Policy Council is a collaborative group of health policy experts whose mandate is to advance knowledge, develop and disseminate policy and enhance learning.

The purpose of the HPC is to:

  • Form a collaborative group of health policy experts in order to advance knowledge, develop and disseminate policy and enhance learning
  • Provide and enable accessible policy advice to the public and private sector
  • Communicate policy proposals to a wide audience
  • Engage with health system stakeholders in advancing health system reform
  • Become a visible and respected forum for health policy discussion
  • Participate, as appropriate, in academic teaching programs at Queen’s

Member Biographies:

Jeffrey B. Ames, MBBS, FRCPC is in his final year of a General Internal Medicine Fellowship. His research interests are in the area of Health Economics focused on the chronic disease population. His goal is the further development of Chronic Disease Prevention and Management Programs across a variety of conditions by looking at patterns of healthcare resource use in these populations.

Kasia Bruski recently moved back to Canada from England where she was Head of Contracting and Policy for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) at NHS England.  Prior to this, Kasia was Deputy Director for Accountable Care Development for 5 Clinical Commissioning Groups in NW London - population of 2 million people and a health budget of £1.8 billion. Before moving to the UK, Kasia worked in British Columbia as a public-sector management consultant specializing in public sector system design.  

Brian Devlin was appointed Providence Care’s Board Chair in 2017.  Prior to joining Providence Care’s Board in 2014, Brian served as a member and then President of the Frontenac Children’s Aid Society Board of Directors for 7 years.  Brian’s professional career spanned 27-years with the Limestone District School Board.  

Don Drummond has been Associate Deputy Minister, Finance Canada, Chief Economist and SVP TD Bank and Chair, Commission on the Reform of Ontario's Public Services.  He currently is Stauffer-Dunning Fellow, School of Policy Studies, Queen's University.

Marcia Finlayson is an occupational therapist and rehabilitation researcher who examines patterns and predictors of health service use, and the effectiveness of this utilization, primarily among people with multiple sclerosis.  Her areas of particular interest include access to rehabilitation and long-term care services (home care, nursing homes), and programs and services that support symptom self-management.

Ian Gilron, MD, MSc, FRCPC, is the Director of Clinical Pain Research, Professor of Anesthesiology, and Biomedical Sciences, and Faculty in the Centre for Neuroscience Studies at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Dr. Gilron is a Councillor of the International Association for the Study of Pain (; serves on the Executive Committee of the Analgesic “ACTTION” partnership (; and is one of the Principal Investigators of the CIHR Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research Chronic Pain Network (

Dr. Michael Green was appointed as the Brian Hennen Chair and Head of the Department of Family Medicine on July 1, 2017. He is Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences at Queen’s University, was the inaugural Clinical Teachers Association of Queen’s University Chair in Applied Health Economics/Health Policy from 2014-2017 and formerly served as Director of the Centre for Health Services and Policy Research.  He is a Senior Adjunct Scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES).

Bishal GyawaliMD, PhD is a medical oncologist with work experience in both high and low-middle income countries, and research focus on cancer policy, financial toxicity and global oncology. He is an advocate of "cancer groundshot"(Lancet Oncology, March 2018), a term he coined to imply that cost-effective, locally affordable and implementable interventions can prevent more cancer deaths globally at a fraction of the cost of the cancer moonshot-like projects. 

Erik S. Knutsen is a Professor and Associate Dean (Academic) of the Faculty of Law at Queen’s University. His areas of academic interest include medical malpractice, insurance, accident law, torts, and the civil justice system.

Dr. Kieran Moore is a Professor of Emergency and Family Medicine, Director of the Public Health and Preventive Medicine residency program and CEO/ Medical Officer of Health for KFL&A Public Health.  He has a strong interest in public health policy issues and the determinants of health.

John Muscedere MD, FRCPC is a Professor of Medicine at Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario Canada. He is the Research Director for the Department of Critical Care Medicine and is the Scientific Director for the Networks of Centers of Excellence (NCE) funded Canadian Frailty Network (

David O’Toole is President and CEO of the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI), and the chair of the board of directors of the Kingston Health Sciences Centre. Prior to joining CIHI in 2014, Mr. O’Toole spent more than 20 years in the Ontario public sector, including as deputy minister of Natural Resources, deputy minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry, and assistant deputy minister in the Cabinet Office.

Natasha Ovtcharenko, MD is an Internal Medicine resident at Queen's University with a background in pharmaceutical policy and access to essential medicines research. Her research and policy interests are in health systems design and interventions to improve access to  care.

David Pedlar is Scientific Director of the Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research (CIMVHR) in the  Faculty of Health Sciences at Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario.

Jane Philpott is the Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences and the CEO of SEAMO. She is a medical doctor and former Member of Parliament. Prior to politics, Dr. Philpott was a family doctor for 30 years and spent the first decade of her career in Niger, West Africa. She was Chief of Family Medicine at Markham Stouffville Hospital and an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. From 2015 to 2019, she served as federal Minister of Health, Minister of Indigenous Services, President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government. She has recently been appointed as the Ministers' Special Advisor for the Ontario Health Data Platform. 

David Pichora is a clinician-scientist, KGHRI; Professor of Surgery and Mechanical Engineering, Queen’s University; Paul B. Helliwell Chair in Orthopaedic Research and President & CEO, Kingston Health Sciences Centre.

Eve Purdy is an emergency medicine resident and is simultaneously pursuing her master's in applied anthropology. She is interested in understanding how organizational culture affects healthcare systems, and teams and thrilled to be contributing to and learning from the Health Policy Council. 

Akshay Rajaram, MMI, MD is a second year Queen’s University family medicine resident beginning additional training in emergency medicine at the University of Ottawa in July 2021. Prior to his medical training, he worked for a children’s mental health agency overseeing client information and performance measurement systems. He has keen interests in informatics, Big Data, and advanced analytics and the intersection between these areas, public policy, and the social determinants of health.

Richard Reznick is a former Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at Queen's University and a professor in the Department of Surgery.

Donna Segal is former chair of the South East Local Health Integration Network. Previously, she worked with the Ministry of Health in the areas of health policy and planning.

Dr. Chris Simpson is a Professor in the Department of Medicine (Cardiology) and a Past-President of the Canadian Medical Association. He has been appointed Ontario Health's Executive Vice-President, Medical, effective February 1, 2021.

Duncan Sinclair, emeritus Professor of Physiology, teaches in a course on Canadian Health Policy. He is a one-time Dean of both the Faculties of Arts and Science and Medicine and Chair of Ontario’s Health Services Restructuring Commission.

Cathy Szabo is the President & CEO of Providence Care, the leading provider of Aging, Mental Health & Rehabilitative Care in southeastern Ontario.  Cathy’s experience focuses on health system improvement for accountable care delivery.  Cathy holds a Master of Public Health, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree, and is a member of ISQua (International Society for Quality in Health Care).

Dr. David Walker is Executive Director of QSPS, former dean of the FHS at Queen’s. He chaired the Ontario Expert Panel post SARS, was inaugural Board chair of the new crown agency Public Health Ontario, has been provincial lead on Alternate Level of Care and Aging Strategy for the Minister of Health, advises the SE-LHIN on various matters, has served on many hospital boards and is a Professor of Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine and Policy Studies at Queen’s.

Dr. Ruth Wilson is a family physician, Professor of Family Medicine, and president for North America of the global family doctor organization, WONCA. A member of the Order of Canada, she led the implementation of primary care reform models in Ontario.