Research Team

Annette Browne

Annette J. Browne (Nominated Principal Investigator) is a Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

  • Annette’s research stems from her clinical work as an outpost nurse who lived and worked in First Nations and Inuit communities in Canada.
  • Her research focuses on health and health care inequities, with a particular focus on implications for Indigenous peoples in Canada.
  • Examples of studies she is currently leading are focused on: fostering access to health care for Aboriginal people in urban areas; addressing the health effects of structural inequities and structural violence; and studying the relevance of cultural safety to health services.

Marilyn Ford-Gilboe (Co-Principal Investigator) is a Professor and Echo Chair in Rural Women’s Health Research in the Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing at the University of Western Ontario in London.

  • With a background in public health, her research focuses on reducing health inequities among women who have experienced intimate partner violence (IPV), particularly those who face significant barriers to support (e.g. those living in rural communities, Indigenous women).
  • This has included studies examining: a) how mothers and children who have separated from an abusive partner/ father promote their health; b) the long-term health and economic impacts of IPV for women, c) how shelters provide support for women who have experienced abuse; and, d) the impacts of innovative health care interventions on the safety, health and quality of life of women who have experienced IPV.
  • She is currently co-leading research on the impacts of both online and nurse-delivered interventions for women who had experienced IPV, and working with policy partners to develop more accurate ways of measuring experiences of violence in population surveys.
Colleen Varcoe

Colleen Varcoe (Co-Principal Investigator) is a Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

  • Her research focuses on women’s health with emphasis on violence and inequity and the culture of health care, and aims to promote ethical practice and policy in the context of violence and inequity.
  • Her previous research includes studies of a) the interacting risks of violence and HIV infection for rural and Aboriginal women, b) rural maternity care for Aboriginal women, and c) ethics and health policy.
  • She is co-leading studies of: a) the effects of violence for women who have left abusive partners, b) primary health care at urban Aboriginal health clinics, c) Aboriginal women’s experiences of leaving abusive partners.
  • She is now leading a study of an intervention for Aboriginal women who have experienced violence.

Nadine Wathen (Co-Principal Investigator) is a Professor in the Faculty of Information and Media Studies at The University of Western Ontario and Research Scholar at the Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women and Children and a Member of The College of the Royal Society of Canada.

  • Her primary research area is developing and evaluating interventions for women and children experiencing violence; and developing the science of knowledge translation and exchange (KTE) to ensure that new knowledge emerging from research is made available, in appropriate ways, to health decision-makers including policy-makers, health care providers, advocates, and members of the public.
  • She has worked extensively with the women’s health research and policy community in Ontario and federally, providing input on specific projects and initiatives, particularly in the areas of family violence, evaluation, KTE and communications.
  • She is co-principal investigator of the Preventing Violence Across the Lifespan (PreVAiL) Research Network (, a CIHR Centre for Research Development in Gender, Mental Health and Violence Across the Lifespan and National Co-Lead of the Violence, Evidence, Guidance, Action – VEGA Project: A Public Health Response to Family Violence:; she also co-leads the international Domestic Violence at Work ([email protected]) Network:

Carol P. Herbert (Co-Investigator) is a Professor in the Dept. of Family Medicine at The University of Western Ontario.

  • She was formerly the Dean of the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at Western from 1999-2010 and headed UBC Dept. of Family Practice from 1988-98.
  • Her work as a full-service family physician, initially at REACH and then at UBC, informed her research, which has included projects on family violence and sexual assault, clinical health promotion and patient-physician decision-making in primary care, complementary and alternative medicine, and diabetes in Aboriginal communities.
  • She has been a leader in introducing a participatory research approach into primary care research.
  • Current research projects have focused on health impact of toxic contaminants in indigenous communities in Canada and in Africa ; a realist review of participatory research – what works, for whom, and in what circumstances; and the impact of gender and generational changes in an academic department of Surgery.

Josée Lavoie (Co-Investigator) is a Professor with the Dept. of Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba.

  • She holds an appointment with the Department of Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba, and is affiliated with the Manitoba First Nations Centre for Aboriginal Health Research (MFN-CAHR).
  • Lavoie’s research interests focus on the policies and financing mechanisms set in place in Canada, Australia and New Zealand to support the continued development of indigenous primary health services and improved access to primary health care services.

Bernadette (Bernie) Pauly (Co-Investigator) is an Associate Professor in the University of Victoria School of Nursing, a Scientist in the Centre for Addictions Research and researcher with the Core Public Health Functions Research Initiative and Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness.

  • Her program of research focuses on the promotion of health equity with a particular focus on health and health care inequities in the context of substance use and homelessness.
  • Her current research projects include  a) integration of an equity lens in public health and application to the promotion of mental health and prevention of the harms of substance use;  b) an exploration of factors that foster equity in housing programs in relation to homelessness, gender, and substance use; c) relevance of cultural safety in fostering equity in relation to substance use and social disadvantages;  d) evaluation of socio-economic factors that impact equity for those experiencing homelessness and housing vulnerability.
  • Her program of research draws heavily on principles of community based research and she is an active participant in health and social issues that impact equity in the community.

David Tu (Co-Investigator) is a Canadian Family Physician and current Research Coordinator for the Vancouver Native Health Clinic.

  • He is also a “Physician Leader” for Vancouver Coastal Health STOP HIV project.
  • Tu is also a Clinical Assistant Professor and has been a Community Based Researcher with UBC Department of Family Practice, and is a Clinical Associate at St. Paul’s Hospital’s HIV ward.
  • Tu’s research interests focus on issues related to Aboriginal People and global health.  His recent research work in Vancouver has focuses on application of the Chronic Care Model to HIV care and application of Self-Management support strategies for people with HIV as well as those with Diabetes.

Bruce Wallace (Co-Investigator) is an Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work at University of Victoria.

  • As a community-based researcher, Bruce works with the Victoria Cool Aid Society’s Community Health Centre as well as their housing and shelter programs.
  • His research and community involvement has focused on poverty, health and equity and he brings to EQUIP over twenty years of experience with non-profit agencies, often collaborating with consumer-led agencies addressing issues related to poverty, homelessness, poor health, mental health and problematic substance use.

Sabrina Wong (Co-Investigator) is an Associate Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. 

  • Her research focuses on primary health care, specifically how structures (e.g., models of care) and processes (e.g., interprofessional teamwork, interpersonal communication) can enhance the delivery and organization of health services.
  • She has specific interests in examining quality of patient care, inequities in health and disparities across groups who may be vulnerable due to factors such as poverty, speaking English as a second language, or geographic location using mixed-methods.
  • Her current projects focus on inequities in health and disparities in access to health services.

Patricia (Patty) Belda is a family doctor in Prince George, BC.

  • Completed Master’s of Science in Immunology, and international development work in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
  • Completed her medical training at McMaster and family medicine residency at UBC.
  • She is currently the medical lead at the Central Interior Native Health Society.
  • Patty also works at the Unattached Patient Clinic and as clinical faculty at the medical school and family medicine residency program.
  • She has completed the University of British Columbia Clinician Scholar Program looking at improving HIV care in Northern BC.

Murry Krause is the Executive Director of the Central Interior Native Health Society, a position he has held for the past 17 years.

  • Prior to holding this position he was the Executive Director of the Prince George United Way for 13 years, specializing in non-profit sector management and governance.
  • He is in his 5th term as a City Councillor with the City of Prince George and his council assignments have been primarily in the areas of social and health innovation.
  • He is also a Director at Large on the Union of BC Municipalities Executive and Chairs the First Nations Relations Committee and is a member of the Healthy Communities Committee, taking responsibility for the Child Poverty initiative with the Ministry of Children and Family Development on behalf of the UBCM.
  • A lifelong commitment to social justice and equity has sustained his motivation.

Cheryl Ward is Kwaguilth from Northern Vancouver Island and has been the Provincial Lead of the PHSA Indigenous Cultural Competency Training since 2008.

  • Cheryl is an experienced instructor, curriculum writer and e-learning developer with a focus on Indigenous-specific racism, social justice education, racial identity development, cross-racial facilitation dynamics, and decolonizing anti-racism work.

Elizabeth Whynot, who moved to BC from Ontario in 1972, is a medical doctor with experience as a family practitioner, public health officer and hospital administrator.

  • She received her MD from Queen’s University in 1972, and a Masters in Health Science from UBC in 1992.
  • As a family practitioner, she worked in both community-based clinics and private practice and was Co-founder of the Vancouver Sexual Assault Service.
  • From 1990- 1998, she was the Medical Health Officer for Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, working alongside community agencies to address the issues of poverty, addictions, HIV and mental illness.
  • As the leader of BC Women’s Hospital from 2000-2008, she was responsible for provincial strategies to improve women’s health and access to maternity care as well as the Provincial Health Authority’s Aboriginal Health Plan and HIV Strategy.
  • She currently works as a locum physician in Vancouver and as a health consultant.

Additional Knowledge Users:

  • Olive Godwin
  • Beth Jackson
  • Doreen Littlejohn
  • Natasha Prodan-Bhalla

Anne Drost is a Nurse Clinician and Manager of Community Health Services at Victoria Cool Aid Society.

  • Anne has been a community nurse for 23 years and has worked in home care in both Victoria and Toronto, in remote First Nations reserves, as a street nurse, and for the past 11 years at Cool Aid Community Health Centre, an inner city primary health care centre in Victoria.
  • Most clients Anne works with are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and struggle with mental health and addiction issues.

Megan Hunter is the Clinical Team Lead at Blue Pine Primary Health Care Clinic.

  • For the past decade her nursing practice has taken her to some interesting corners of the earth, from remote First Nations communities in Northern BC, to the deserts of Somalia, and most as Head of Mission for Doctors without Borders in Eastern Congo, Megan.
  • At Blue Pine, she and the clinic team are working to develop a team-based, patient-centred Primary Health Care Clinic, created to address the needs of the people of Prince George who previously had no access to Primary Care.
  • Megan has an MA in International Studies and Diplomacy (SOAS) and has taught Leadership and Management theory at the UNBC School of Nursing.

Tatiana Pyper is a Registered Dietitian at Health Zone Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic.

  • She provides clients with information on nutrition, food, and making healthy choices to improve their health or manage a medical condition, by taking complex medical and nutrition research and translating it into everyday food choices.
  • In this journey, Tatiana offers tools for healthy eating, such as portion control, reading labels, sample meal plans, shopping tips, and healthy recipes that lead to a healthier lifestyle.
  • She delivers a variety of programs for healthy lifestyles promoting behaviour change related to food choices, eating behaviour, preparation methods, and physical activity levels to optimize health.
  • Tatiana has worked as a Registered Dietitian for Six Nations reserve where she has developed and implemented culturally sensitive community nutrition programs for the Long-Term Care/Home and Community Care Program.
  • She has provided therapeutic and preventative nutrition assessment, counselling, and education at an individual and group level in the Six Nations community.

Additional Primary Health Care Partners

  • Kathy Bresett
  • Pierre Ducharme
  • Myrna Fisk
  • Colleen Kennelly
  • Wendy McKay
  • Morgan Price

Canadian Collaborators

  • Madeline Boscoe (REACH Community Health Centre) – Vancouver, BC
  • Dr. Jeannie Haggerty (McGill University) – Montreal, Quebec
  • Greg Webster (Canadian Institute for Health Information) – Ottawa, Ontario

International Collaborators

  • Prof. Alex Brown (South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute) – Adelaide, Australia
  • Prof. Jacqueline Cumming (Victoria University of Wellington, NZ) – Wellington, New Zealand
  • Dr. Flora Douglas (University of Aberdeen, Scotland)  – Aberdeen, Scotland
  • Prof. Judith Dwyer (Flinders University, Australia) – Adelaide, Australia
  • Dr. Pat Neuwelt (The University of Auckland, NZ) – Auckland, New Zealand
  • Dr. Tim Tenbensel (The University of Auckland, NZ) – Auckland, New Zealand

Jo Parker (Research Manager)

  • As manager of EQUIP Primary Care, Jo oversees research activities and team communications, and works closely with the research team to share the findings and lessons learned from the project. This includes working collaboratively with the research team and community partners to develop products and channels that will make the messages accessible and appealing to a wide variety of audiences.
  • Jo has a Masters in Health Promotion, and all of her work centers around health, social justice and engaging community members in research about topics that affect their lives.

Joanne Hammerton (Research Manager)

  • Joanne is based at the Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing at the University of Western Ontario in London.  Her work includes coordination and data management of a multi-site longitudinal study on the long-term effects of women who have recently left an abusive partner.
  • She has also been involved in the development and implementation of interventions for women experiencing intimate partner violence.
  • Joanne worked as the research manager for the Ontario division of EQUIP Primary Care.


Phoebe Long (Research Manager) is the Research Manager for EQUIP Emergency at the UBC School of Nursing in Vancouver, British Columbia.

  • As research manager for this study, Phoebe coordinated research operations and team communications, and provided supervision to research staff and students on the team.
  • Phoebe has been managing research projects related to health, equity, and interpersonal and structural violence since 2009, having joined the EQUIP Health Care team in 2011.
  • Phoebe has a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of Arizona, with an emphasis on global maternal and child health and medical anthropology. She is bilingual in Spanish and English and has a background in Latin American studies.
  • Phoebe’s previous work includes social work and counseling with migrant and immigrant families, many of whom have experienced multiple forms of violence. Throughout her previous and current work, Phoebe maintains a commitment to social justice and advocacy for marginalized people.


Taq Bhandal (Research Assistant)

  • Taq is a PhD Student at the Social Justice Institute at the University of British Columbia. Her parents immigrated to Metro Vancouver from Punjab, India and so she was born, lives, and works on the unceded, ancestral lands of the Coast Salish peoples and continue to support Indigenous movements of self-determination.
  • In official academic terms, she interested is in doing research and writing on the complex relations between health equity, political economies, global meta-narratives, decolonial and intersectional feminist perspectives, and our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. Taq is passionate about balancing research, teaching, creative writing, organizational skills, cooking (and eating of course!), sustainability, and community involvement.

Anwaar Baobeid (Research Assistant)

Additional previous staff and trainees include:

  • Jacquie Denison (Trainee)
  • Shayna Dolan (Research Assistant)
  • Alycia Fridkin (Trainee)
  • Christine Garinger (Trainee)
  • Alison Gerlach (Trainee)
  • Leanne Huang (Research Assistant)
  • Janina Krabbe (Interim Research Manager)
  • Sarah Levine (Trainee)
  • Jen MacGregor (Trainee)
  • Wendy Masinde (Trainee)
  • Virginia Russell (Research Assistant)
  • Marion Selfridge (Research Assistant)
  • Meaghan Thumath (Trainee)
  • Kelsey Timler (Research Assistant)