The Team

Dr. Holly Mansell an Associate Professor of Pharmacy at the University of Saskatchewan is the project lead/primary investigator. She has a practice site at the Saskatchewan Transplant Program as a clinical pharmacist. As Past-Chair of the Canadian Society of Transplant (CST) Pharmacist Group, she has had the opportunity to connect with pharmacists involved in other transplanting centers across the country, providing insight on the need for improved pre-transplant education nationwide.
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Ms. Nicola Rosaasen is a Transplant Pharmacist at the Saskatchewan Transplant Program and project co-lead. Since 2002 she has played a pivotal role at the program, educating transplant recipients about their medications and working through the challenges of non-adherence in transplant recipients. Her involvement in the Transplant Patient Family Advisory Council have helped to provide the inspiration for this project.

Dr. Rahul Mainra is a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine in the College of Medicine, at the University of Saskatchewan. He has been working as a staff transplant nephrologist since 2006 and is actively involved within the Saskatchewan Transplant Program, managing patients in the assessment phase and following transplantation.

Mr. Azaad Kukha-Bryson (AKB Productions) is the video producer for this project. Azaad has pursued a passion for photography and videography for over a decade and has developed skills in video production including scriptwriting, video and audio equipment operation, visual effects design, and post-production techniques, through both self-directed research and formal training courses. His experience as a licensed pharmacist is an additional bonus.

Dr. Ahmed Shoker is a Professor of Medicine at the College of Medicine from the University of Saskatchewan. He is also the Medical Director of the Saskatchewan Transplant Program. His many years as a transplant nephrologist have provided him with much insight on the prevalence and impact of non-adherence in this population.

Dr. David Blackburn is a Professor of Pharmacy and research chair in Patient Adherence to Drug Therapy at the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan. He is also the Director of the Saskatchewan Drug Utilization and Outcomes Research Team (SDUORT). He has extensive experience in the use of Saskatchewan’s health-administrative databases for studying the use of prescriptions and their influence on health outcomes.

Mr. Paraag Trivedi graduated with his Bachelor of Science of Pharmacy from the University of Saskatchewan in 2016. During his third year as a pharmacy student, he joined the project as a summer research student. Receiving a kidney transplant eleven years ago, his perspective as both a patient and student, and now health care provider have provided great insight on this project.

Ms. Victoria Nhin is the animator for this project. She received her Bachelor of Science Degrees of Fine Arts in 3D Animation, Multimedia, and Drawing at the University of Colorado at Denver, and has vast experience creating animations and graphics for medical, educational, litigation, marketing, and sports entertainment. Victoria was a medical animator for over ten years and enjoys creating animations to help people understand complex medical procedures.

Ms. Michele Hoffert is a Registered Social Worker with the Saskatchewan Transplant Program in Regina. She also works with the Chronic Kidney Disease and Home Therapies Programs at the Kidney Health Centre. She has a passion for transplant, as a donor family member, and a strong commitment to patient care. Her previous experience in Mental Health and more recent role within the Renal Programs allows for valuable collaboration on this research project. She joins this team to bring a social work perspective to patient education and care.

Ms. Jenny Wichart is a Pharmacy Clinical Practice Leader for Solid Organ Transplant and Nephrology in Calgary, Alberta. She maintains a clinical practice in the Paediatric Nephrology and Transplant Clinics at Alberta Children’s Hospital. Jenny has been actively involved in various roles within the Canadian Society of Transplantation and is also the current Chair of the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists Transplant Pharmacy Specialty Network.

Dr. Patricia West-Thielke is the Director of Clinical Transplant Research and Research Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System. She has been the principal investigator for over 30 kidney transplant clinical trials and manages a clinical trials unit. She is actively involved with the transplant program educating patients in both the pre- and post-transplant phases. Her areas of research include adherence, pharmacokinetics, and sensitization.

Ms. Anita Wong is a clinical pharmacist with the Renal Transplant Program in Edmonton. She teaches transplant patients about their medications and provides direct patient care. She also works at Rexall Outpatient Pharmacy, University of Alberta since 2002 (previously known as Capital Health Outpatient Pharmacy). She is passionate to reduce rejection rates by improving patients’ adherence on immunosuppressants.

Dr. Kevin Wen is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine at the University of Alberta. His primary interest is in improving the care and outcomes of transplant recipients. His current research and clinical focus is on improving immunosuppression adherence in kidney transplant recipients.

Dr. Bita Bateni is a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist with the Kidney and Heart transplant program at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver and a clinical instructor with the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UBC. She is responsible for provision and management of safe and effective pharmacotherapy in patients post kidney and heart transplant. She serves as a departmental resource and a liaison to other programs across the province. Her research interests include medication adherence, and management of viral infections post transplant

Dr. Cindy Luo is a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist with the Kidney Transplant Program at Vancouver General Hospital and a Clinical Instructor with the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of British Columbia. She manages drug therapies in complex kidney transplant recipients, and serves as a resource to pharmacists and health care providers across the province on transplant medication-related issues. Her research interests include adherence and pharmacogenomics.

Ms. Errin Willenborg received a kidney transplant recipient in February of 2016. She currently manages a research program funded by canola producers in the province of Saskatchewan. Errin is actively involved with the Saskatchewan branch of the Kidney Foundation of Canada as a peer-support volunteer. She was also featured as a key note speaker at the annual Fright Night fundraiser and was awarded highest fundraiser for the 2017 Saskatoon Kidney Walk.

Dr. Juxin Liu is a Professor of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics in the College of Arts and Science at the University of Saskatchewan. In general, the nature of her research is to develop statistical methods to solve real world problems. In particular, her recent research work mainly focuses on latent variable modelling schemes for imperfect data (such as measurement error, misclassification, and missing data).

Ms. Brianna Groot is the project coordinator and methodological consultant. She manages the Experimental Decision Laboratory at the Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research (CHASR) at the University of Saskatchewan. As an experienced research manager, Brianna helps researchers to design, administer and interpret their project findings.

Mr. Patrick Head is a kidney transplant recipient and is from Kinistino. He received his transplant in 2017. He has been instrumental in developing our process for rural participants without internet access, and we have worked with his local nursing station to figure out an alternate process for video and survey dissemination.

Mr. Gerald Chartier is from Buffalo Narrows. He received a kidney transplant in 2017. Prior to this he was on dialysis, and had to make more than 500 trips to and from North Battleford while waiting for transplant – a 4-hour drive from Buffalo Narrows. Gerald’s insight has been particularly valuable for developing a plan to reach our patients in rural and Northern Saskatchewan, and for those who are not regular users of the internet.

Dr. Jay Wilson is an Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Curriculum Studies in the College of Education at the University of Saskatchewan. Jay has taught video production and instructional design for the past ten years, and his program of research centers on technology skill development in educators, experiential learning, and design studio learning environments. He has managed his own video production company since 1993 and has produced video content for a broad range of business, industry, and education partners.

Dr. Maya Obadia is a MINT certified Motivational Interviewing trainer and facilitator. Her background is in training practitioners to adopt motivational interviewing to facilitate the behaviour change process for their patients. Her research areas include adherence to self management strategies from health behaviour change and medication adherence. Her PhD training was completed at the University of Toronto, Institute of Medical Science at the Hospital for Sick Children. She is currently working within the Department of Supportive Care at Princess Margaret UHN in Toronto.

Lung Videos:

Dr. Mark Fenton is the Director of the Lung Transplant Program, Medical Director of the Sleep Disorders Center, and and Program Director of the Respirology Training Program at the University of Saskatchewan and Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon.

Dr. Julian Tam a respirologist in the College of Medicine and director of the Saskatoon Adult Cystic Fibrosis Clinic. He completed his lung transplantation and cystic fibrosis fellowships at the University of Toronto, and his Respirology fellowship and Internal Medicine residency at the University of Saskatchewan.

Ms. Louise Cardinal has been working as a transplant pharmacist at the Saskatchewan Transplant Program since 2009. Her role is managing and monitoring drug therapy in liver, heart and lung transplant recipients as well as providing support and education to other health care providers caring for these complex patients.

Other Contributors: 

  • Dr. Jeff Taylor (survey design)
  • Dr. Gail Mackay (Indigenous perspective)
  • Raj Padmanabh (video editor)
  • Landon Doucette (sound technician)
  • Roger Trottier (illustration concept)
  • Jacey Jones (literature search)
  • Carrie Larson, Shirin Aladwan, Carrie Nagel (research assistants)
  • Terry Steeves-Gurnsey (research assistant, Saskatchewan)
  • Maithiri Amararajan, Benjamin Midgley (research assistants, Alberta)
  • Dr. Annshirley Afful, Huokai Wu (statistics)


  • Astellas Pharma Canada, Inc.
  • College of Pharmacy & Nutrition Summer Student Research Award
  • Summer Student Works, Government of Saskatchewan
  • Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF)
  • Saskatchewan Centre for Patient-Oriented Research (SCPOR)
  • American Society of Transplantation, Transplantation and Immunology Research Network (TIRN)
  • The Lung Association of Saskatchewan (LAS)
  • The Respiratory Research Center (RRC)

Thank you:

  • Sanjay Bakshi (U of S alumni BSc’92, MSc’94) for the excellent advice and direction you provided to the creative team.
  • To all of the patients and staff that have shared their time and their personal stories. You are the inspiration for this project!
  • To Dr. Kerry Alcorn & ninth grade students at Aden Bowman, health care providers, and patients Thank you for providing thoughtful and constructive reviews of the videos!