Dr. Tamara Shenkier, 2019 Honorary Medical Alumni Award Recipient

Dr. Tamara Shenkier

Dr. Tamara Shenkier received her undergraduate medical degree from McGill University and her Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology Training at the University of British Columbia and BC Cancer Agency (Vancouver Centre) where she has practiced since completing her training. Her clinical focus since 2014 is exclusively breast oncology.

Dr. Shenkier’s teaching interests focus on communication, specifically the skills physicians need when discussing serious news with patients. She served as UBC Medical Oncology Program Director from 2004-2012, is a past member of the Royal College Medical Oncology Exam Committee and is the current Chair of the Royal College Medical Oncology Specialty Committee.

Her interest in improving patient care is reflected in two ongoing projects. One is the establishment in April 2018 of the After Breast Cancer Service, in collaboration with BC Women’s Hospital and partially funded by a BC Cancer Foundation Clinical Innovation Grant. With over 275 referrals so far, she anticipates this model of care for cancer survivors may become a new standard in BC. She is also co-investigator on a Canadian Partnership Against Cancer (CPAC) grant entitled implementing and evaluating the early integration of a comprehensive ‘palliative approach’ to care for patients with incurable cancer. This three year project includes education for health care providers and the use of Patient Reported Outcomes (PROs) to improve outcomes for patients living with metastatic disease.

Dr. Shenkier’s administrative responsibilities have included president of the Association of BCCA Medical Oncologists and member of the BCCA Medical Advisory Committee. She is cofounder and inaugural president of the BC Cancer Medical Staff Engagement Society, representing over 400 medical staff from six regional cancer centres. In recognition of this achievement she was awarded the Doctors of BC and Ministry of Health Joint Collaborative Committees’ “Champions of Change” Award in 2018.

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