March 8 is International Women’s day. This year’s theme is #pressforprogress, motivating and uniting friends, colleagues and whole communities to think, act and be gender inclusive
At eHealth Innovation, progression is a driving force behind the work we do. As a team, we are focused on progressing healthcare in a direction where patients are a key player in their healthcare journey; bringing technology that empowers and supports into the hands of the patient.
The work we do is by no means simple, and the team is lucky to have a large group of extraordinary women that push for progression in healthcare (and beyond). Their passion and determination are second to none.
The men and women of our team were asked this week to reflect on the female role models that have motivated them to be a part of healthcare. Each response is unique, however, a similar theme proved clear across the board: We are surrounded by women that inspire, challenge, and support us to make a difference, every day. These women deserve to be celebrated!
“A woman who inspired me to work in healthcare is Jennifer. Jennifer was an inpatient nurse at Bloorview Kids Rehab Hospital who took care of me when I was a patient there. She showed incredible empathy and care to me and all of the other children at the hospital. She showed me what an incredible impact you can have in healthcare through the smallest of interactions. It has been fifteen years since I last saw Jennifer, but I am still greatly touched by her kindness. She has inspired me to work in this field and contribute in my own way to help people live healthier and happier lives.”
“I’ve been fortunate enough to be surrounded by many impressive, hard-working, dedicated and intelligent women and because of that, I’ve always believed that there aren’t any limits on what I can do. The supervisor I had during my Master’s thesis, in particular, is a leader in her field and a great mentor. My Mom is the most strong and caring person I know. My friends, classmates, colleagues and peers are bright and creative which pushes me to always do my best. I hope that one day I can have that positive influence on someone that these women have had on me.”
“My mom was a toxicologist before she returned to school to become a speech-language pathologist. She managed the dual responsibilities of a mother of young children and a mature student flawlessly – always available to care for my sister and I, while thriving academically and earning awards for clinical excellence. She was voted “most likely not to charge for professional services” for her commitment to supporting patients irrespective of their financial resources. Her unremitting drive to provide excellent care is an ongoing inspiration for the work I do in advancing care through health IT.”
“My mom had hypertension for as long as I can remember. Since I was a kid, I always wanted to help her feel better somehow. A few years ago, she got diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, and that was the tipping point that made me decide to go into healthcare. All I wanted to do was use my coding skills to benefit my mom and other people like her.”
“There are two women in my life that I have grown to admire and look up to. Both pursued a career in healthcare which led me to also find a similar path. These two women are my older sisters. My oldest sister is a nephrologist who dedicated her research in finding better ways patients can accept their new kidney after a transplant and my middle sister is a physician assistant for a physiatrist providing a better quality of life to those who are undergoing rehabilitation treatment as a result of motor vehicle accidents. Though we are doing very different things with our careers, in some way we are all connected in the fact that we ultimately hope to help our patients.”
“I am lucky that I have been surrounded by inspiring female leaders my whole life. My mom, who was a lawyer on Bay street for many years, the teachers at my all-girl high school who really pushed us to achieve excellence in all areas of our lives, and more recently, my best friends – women my age – who take huge strides in their career and have never backed down from a good challenge. These women are remarkable. My grade 12 biology teacher, Seonaid Davis, was one woman in particular who is part of the reason I work in healthcare today. Ms. Davis presented us with an assignment to look into the news and explore how science influences human behaviour and shapes the society in which we live. I read a three-part series by Globe and Mail journalist, Ian Brown, about his experiences raising a son who has Cardiofaciouscutaneuos Syndrome (CFC). Brown’s heart-breaking account of the severely debilitating degenerative disease sparked my curiosity in unpacking the traits that define a ‘human being’. My values, interest in philosophy and long-standing desire to contribute to the healthcare sector began to converge. Brown’s article ignited my passion for investigating the social side of healthcare and Ms. Davis allowed me to explore this interest in full force and grew my natural affinity for the topic of biology. ”
“The ladies at the Centre for Collaborative Health (Oakville clinic) are absolutely phenomenal! It is apparent that these intelligent ladies are very passionate about their work, as they all put their heart and soul into what they do. Their work ethic is truly inspiring and they are wonderful people to be around!”