Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration - Canada Team

Leading medical experts and volunteers

Dr. Simon Sutcliffe
President of Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration and a renowned cancer specialist.

Dr. Sutcliffe is the former President of the BC Cancer Agency and past Chair of the Canadian Partnership against Cancer. Dr. Sutcliffe established Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration – the Canadian branch of the International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research (INCTR) – in 2010. 

It’s Canadians working with health professionals in India and other countries to create a self-sufficient, sustainable system of care for those in need.  ~ Dr. Simon Sutcliffe


Dr. Stuart Brown
Medical Director of the Tertiary Palliative Care Unit at Abbotsford Regional Hospital and Cancer Centre. Dr. Brown has worked in Saudi Arabia in palliative medicine and since 2008 has volunteered in Brazil, India, Nepal and Tanzania with the Palliative Access (PAX) Program of INCTR and Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration.

“The work of Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration is of great importance in that it gives us an opportunity to help make a difference in the lives of many people most of whom we will never meet.” ~ Dr. Stuart Brown


Dr. Gillian Fyles 
Palliative Access (PAX) Director Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration. Dr. Fyles is the Medical Leader of the Pain and Symptom Management/Palliative Care Program at the Sindi Ahluwalia Hawkins Centre for the Southern Interior, BC Cancer Agency. 

“I see each time I return to Hyderabad. Dr. Palat and her Team are making extraordinary strides in improving the care for adults and children with advanced illnesses and it is a privilege to be part of this.” ~ Dr. Gillian Fyles


 

 

 

Dr. Robin Love
Palliative Care Consultant

Dr. Love volunteers as a consultant with Two Worlds Canada Collaboration and INCTR-PAX, and has assisted in teaching palliative care in Brazil, Egypt, India, Nepal and Saudi Arabia. While in Montreal in a Family Medicine residency Dr. Love had his first exposure to Palliative Care. In 1988 he returned to Vancouver Island. It soon became clear that Nanaimo needed a palliative care program, so after some extra training at Victoria Hospice, Dr. Love started a consultation service and along with a dedicated group of nurses and administrators, a palliative care program in Nanaimo, BC was started in 1993. In 2005, the Nanaimo Palliative Care Program initiated a twinning partnership with Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital in Nepal – “Partners in Compassion”. Each year Dr. Love and a multi-disciplinary team of colleagues, travels to Nepal to provide support and training in palliative care. He is actively involved in teaching medical students and family practice residents through the UBC Faculty of Medicine Family Medicine program at the Nanaimo site. Dr. Love also has been involved with the Canadian Society of Palliative Care Physicians, and the BCMA section of Palliative Care Medicine.

Dr. Fraser Black
Two Worlds Cancer executive

Dr. Black is also the Associate Director of the INCTR Palliative Access Program (PAX) and has worked on palliative care initiatives in many countries including Nepal, India, Tanzania and Brazil. He has practised palliative care over the last 15 years providing care to both adults and children. He currently works at Victoria Hospice as well as being a Consultant with the BC Cancer Agency. Dr. Black holds the appointment of Clinical Professor with the University of British Columbia and the Island Medical Program at the University of Victoria.  

“The opportunity to work with Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration and with INCTR over the past decade has been tremendously rewarding as I have seen how working together with our partners in other countries can result in monumental change over a relatively short period of time. I have seen first hand how this results in more patients and their families receiving the care, symptom management and support that they desperately require. “ ~ Fraser Black

Dr. Elizabeth (Biz) Bastian
General Practitioner in Oncology

Dr. Elizabeth (Biz) Bastian is a graduate of McGill University. Based in Smithers, BC for the last 32 years, she has worked for many years as a full service GP in rural/remote practice. In 2005 she completed training at the BC Cancer Agency as a General Practitioner in Oncology and began work with the Smithers Community Cancer Services. Dr. Bastian has also been a Physician Lead for the Northern Health Authority Hospice Palliative Care Program, and has built a strong presence within the Smithers regional area for excellence in palliative care. She has been an executive member of the BCMA section of Palliative Care Medicine, a member of the Canadian Society of Palliative Care physicians and is active with the Family Practice Oncology Network. Dr. Bastian has provided mentorship and support to palliative care programs through INCTR-Brazil, and has worked with challenged children and women’s' groups on a volunteer basis in Kenya. 

“Over the years of involvement with palliative care, I have seen the incredible benefit to those suffering at the end of life, particularly with cancer, that can be alleviated with access to properly trained health care teams. Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration is a good venue to help build this opportunity for so many of those suffering through lack of access to health care.” ~ Dr. Elizabeth (Biz) Bastian

Dr. François Bachand
Radiation Oncologist at the BC Cancer Agency in Kelowna, BC.

He specializes in brachytherapy and treatment of Genitourinary and Gynecologic cancers. He is currently the chair of the Genitourinary Radiation Oncology Group of British Columbia. Dr. Bachand has been involved with 2WCC since 2014 travelling to Hyderabad to teach in the Palliative Care Certificate Program and to present at various Radiation Oncology rounds.

"I was in my first year of Medical School when I volunteered in India for the first time. After hearing what Dr. Fyles and Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration were helping to develop, I did not hesitate a second and joined them. Helping people like Dr. Palat and her team in Hyderabad is incredibly rewarding and reminds me why I am doing this job. I am looking forward to my next trip there and to working again with such brilliant people."  ~ Dr. François Bachand

Dr. Ann Syme
Director, Palliative Institute at Covenant Health in Edmonton, AB.

Dr. Syme’s palliative care mentorship has taken her to Ethiopia and India. At MNJ in Hyderabad, India, she has participated as a faculty member at MNJ’s intensive train-the-trainer Palliative Care Certificate Course. In Ethiopia, Dr. Syme participated in a readiness assessment that has led to the support for a pediatric oncology ward at Black Lion Hospital and the opening of a hospice both in Addis Ababa.

“Being involved in Two Worlds Cancer provides me with the opportunity to serve in areas where care is desperately needed by people living and dying in low-resource countries. It is here that efforts can be made to improve lives of these people with the smallest of financial investment and the greatest investment of hope.   It is here that we truly remember the larger family we all belong to and should care for and honour as our own. Because they are.” ~ Dr. Ann Syme, RN, PhD

Zahra Lalani
Palliative Care Coordinator and Oncology nurse

Palliative Care Coordinator with the Vancouver Hospice Society and an oncology nurse with the BC Cancer Agency, Zahra has provided mentorship for the Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration sponsored programs at MNJ in Hyderabad since 2010. She has built a collaborative relationship mentoring and training the pediatric oncology nursing staff and the Life at Your Doorstep home-visit palliative care team. During her volunteer visits to MNJ she also participates as a faculty member at MNJ’s intensive train-the-trainer Palliative Care Certificate Course.

“Having grown up in a developing country, I have been able to experience first hand the health disparities that exist between the third and first worlds. Therefore, I have an inherent connection with the mission of Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration. The implications of not having access to something as simple and affordable as pain medication after a grueling cancer journey can mean the difference between palpable agonizing pain and dying a dignified, pain-free death. As an oncology nurse, I advocate for my patients to get access to the best care and as a privileged Canadian, I have a responsibility to advocate for people who are suffering needlessly regardless of where they live. Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration provides me the opportunity to share my knowledge and passion and give voice to the silenced victims of cancer. On most days, this seems like a daunting task, but with the commitment and passion of the Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration team, bridging the gap between the two worlds seems attainable. I am grateful for opportunities to volunteer with an organization that emulates my values.” ~ Zahra Lalani

Fatima Ladha
Clinical pharmacist for the Oncology and Tertiary Palliative Care units at Abbotsford Regional Hospital and Cancer Centre.

Fatima has worked in oncology and palliative care since 2012 and joined the efforts of Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration in 2013.  

“The opportunity to volunteer with Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration is exciting. I have seen first-hand, the results produced when TWCC partners with dedicated local healthcare workers to provide much-needed palliative care and symptom management in resource-challenged countries.  The leaps and bounds made in such a short time are inspiring. As Gandhi-ji has said, ‘Be the change you want to see in the world.’  I want to see one world, where cancer is no longer a painful death sentence, where anyone and everyone in our worldwide community has equal opportunity to live out their days with quality and dignity.” ~ Fatima Ladha

Doug Ennals
Social work consultant

A social work consultant with the Vancouver Island Health Authority, Doug has provided mentorship for the social workers at MNJ, in Hyderabad, India and the Victoria Hospice twinning project with the hospice at B.P. Koirala Memorial Cancer Hospital, in Bharatpur, Nepal. 


Canada – Administration and Support Volunteers

Dee Street
Administrative support volunteer

Dee recently repatriated to Canada after working as a human resources advisor in Amsterdam. She currently works as an Awards Coordinator at Children and Family Research Institute in Vancouver and provides administrative support for Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration. Dee's 20-year career is defined by taking on challenging business administration roles in legal, high-tech and healthcare industries.  

“The work I do with Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration allows the great team of dedicated medical specialists to focus on what they do best, the delivery of the much-needed palliative and end-of-life care." - Dee Street

Mark McGorman
Treasurer

Mark volunteers his time bringing his 30 years experience as a Chartered Accountant to the organization’s executive. He is a principal with McGorman Maclean in Parskville, BC. Mark has volunteered his time and expertise since 2WCC’s inception.

Nick Locke
Fundraising and communications support

Nick is a fundraising professional with over 30 years of experience, almost 20 years of which were raising funds for cancer care and research in Canada. He has worked at Princess Margaret Hospital, BC Cancer Foundation and the Alberta Cancer Foundation.

"Over the past 20 years I have worked with the most talented and committed cancer specialists who have built a Canadian system that delivers the best cancer outcomes in the world. And so it is a great honour and privilege to volunteer my time and fundraising expertise to help them share their knowledge with developing countries with the goal of improving the way they treat cancer and improving their survival rates" ~ Nick Locke

Robyn Sussel
Branding and design communications

Robyn and her team at Signal.ca first got involved in this endeavour because of their work in the health communications field in relatively rich Canada, the US and Europe. She and her team felt the desire to "give back" through an effective and meaningful charitable organization that benefitted lesser-resourced countries. Signals named and branded Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration and now provides ongoing design communications support to the team on a voluntary basis to help with the fundraising effort.

"We chose Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration as our charity of choice because our small voluntary team can make such a big difference. I just can't bear to think about adults and especially children dying of cancer with no pain medication. It's a horrible reality. I want to change that. And I especially like that we're building capacity in these countries rather than just offering aid. That's the key to real change that will improve end-of-life care for so many people." ~ Robyn Sussel

Chuck Russell
Multi-media and communications support

Chuck has worked 25 years as a photojournalist in the editorial world. Since 2009, he has worked part-time in multi-media at the BC Cancer Agency. Chuck has documented the Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration supported programs in India and Nepal. 

“Both India and Nepal seemingly face insurmountable odds in their respective battles with cancer care – burgeoning and ageing populations; too few staff for the 100 of thousands in need of care. It’s humbling, and more than a little overwhelming at times, watching the work that Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration supports in both countries. Yet the strides the dedicated local doctors, nurses, social workers and volunteers have made with mentorship and support is amazing. I have witnessed the passionate and significant care that the health care teams make in the lives of children and adults receiving palliative and end-of-life care.“ ~ Chuck Russell

India – Medical Team

Dr. Gayatri Palat
Director of Palliative Care Access for Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration in India and the Don Rix Professor of Palliative Medicine at the MNJ Institute of Oncology.

She is also Director of the INCTR Hyderabad Institute of Palliative Care. Dr. Palat is currently Associate Professor of the Department of Pain and Palliative Medicine in the in Hyderabad. Previously she was an Associate Professor in the Department of Palliative Medicine at Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, Kochi, and participated in the Faculty Development Program of the International Association of Hospice and Palliative Care (IAHPC). Dr. Palat is also on the advisory committee of palliative care for the National Cancer Control Program, India.