The Division of Respiratory Medicine’s mandate is to provide leadership and excellence in the discipline of Pediatric Respiratory Medicine for the children of British Columbia. This includes, but is not limited to excellence in patient care, education of health care workers and the public as well as research in the areas related to Pediatric Respiratory Medicine.
Respiratory problems account for the largest number of physician and emergency department visits for acute problems in children, as well as the largest number of admission to pediatric hospitals and a significant proportion of bed days for chronic inpatient care. Strong leadership in this specialty is crucial to provide quality care for the children of British Columbia.
The division members are all involved in clinical research and have a wide range of interests and expertise. Many of the division members are also part of the BC Child and Family Research Institute (BCFRI) and are involved in collaborations with the scientists at BCFRI.
Over the last 15 years I have developed a research interest into non-CF Bronchiectasis. This focused primarily on primary ciliary dyskinesia. I developed a new method for the evaluation of function of microscopic hairs (cilia) which line the airways of the lung. This has been standardized and is now used as an accepted method for the diagnosis of primary ciliary dyskinesia and research platform.
Cystic Fibrosis (CF) research is another significant research area. I am the principal investigator on several clinical trials looking at new medications in CF patients.
My research interests reflect my past clinical experience. My primary interest has always been international health. I have published two books on the subject and also teach a credit course on international health at UBC. I currently run a large multi-centre trial in India looking into childhood pneumonia. I also like investigating topical questions in clinical respiratory medicine, including the very specialised respiratory topic of children that need mechanical ventilation in their homes.
My interest is in improving care for critically ill children mainly with respiratory problems and utilizing emerging technologies. I have managed an international discussion forum for health care professionals interested in pediatric lung diseases for 20 years. I am developing mobile applications to improve the prescribing of drugs for children. I am working on improving in-hospital care of children using standardized tools to provide early warning of changes in their conditions so that they can be treated before they deteriorate. I have also utilized technology to provide access for children to simple diagnostic tests (oximetry) in their home to assess breathing disorders during sleep and in the developing world to provide access to oximetry in the diagnosis of pneumonia.
My research is focused on finding the best way to diagnose and treat different types of asthma. I am particularly interested in learning about the reasons why some children have severe, treatment resistant asthma and finding ways to treat these children effectively. I am also interested in finding the best way to deliver asthma care to children across the province.
I am also involved in projects that look at the effectiveness of different types of therapies that we use for children with cystic fibrosis.
The service provides educational experiences to Medical Students, Paediatric Residents and Subspecialty Residents and Fellows.
All pediatric residents rotate through the Division of Respiratory Medicine as part of their core first year rotation and can also participate in respiratory medicine electives later in their training. The division and its members have received awards from the Pediatric Residents for their excellence in teaching.
The Pediatric Respiratory Fellowship program was fully accredited by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in 2013 and provides a two year clinical fellowship for eligible residents. Applications are accepted through the CARMS system. A one to two year clinical or research fellowship in Respiratory Medicine is also available for international trainees. Applications for international candidates are accepted until the end of August for fellowships starting the following July.
The division has been training international fellows since 2002 and has had trainees from the United Kingdom, South America and South Africa. The division is dedicated to providing a high standard of clinical and research training and its fellows have participated in scholarly activities that have led to multiple publications.
Inquiries about the training program including the application process can be directed to Daisy Yin at Daisy.Yin@cw.bc.ca
BC’s Children’s Hospital is the only pediatric tertiary care centre for a province that contains nearly 1 million children. Consequently, the respiratory division is a busy service that provides care across the full range of pediatric respiratory diseases. Apart from running general respiratory clinics dealing with referrals from across the province, the division also runs weekly multi-disciplinary clinics for cystic fibrosis, asthma, sleep medicine, non-CF bronchiectasis and home ventilation. The home ventilation clinic has now grown to become one of the largest clinics of its kind in North America. Taken together, the outpatient clinics currently have over 3,000 patient visits annually but totals increase every year. The division also provides an in-patient consultation service and sees over 300 new ward consultations each year.
The Respiratory Medicine division is also responsible for the Pulmonary Function Laboratory which is a category 3A laboratory as accredited by the BC Diagnostic Accreditation Program. The respiratory therapists in the pulmonary function laboratory perform over 2500 lung function tests a year, including exercise testing and methacholine challenges. The division also manages the Pediatric Polysomnography Service and tests 150 to 200 children with sleep disordered breathing each year. All of the division members are qualified in flexible bronchoscopy and this procedure is done for inpatients as well as for outpatients through day surgery.
Dr. Michael Seear, MB ChB. FRCPC
Division Head, Clinical Professor
Dr. David Wensley, MB BS, FRCPC
Division Head of Critical Care Medicine
Director of the Pulmonary Function Laboratory
Dr. Mark Chilvers, MB ChB, MD MRCP, MRCPCH,
Director of the Cystic Fibrosis Clinic
Clinical Associate Professor
Dr. Connie Yang, MSc, MD, FRCPC, FAAP,
Director of the Asthma Clinic, Training Program Director
Clinical Assistant Professor
Dr. Claire Seaton, MB ChB, FRCPC
Dr. Sal Denny, MB ChB, FRCPC
Dr. Kirsten Ebbert, MD, FRCPC
Dr. Kelly Luu, MD, FRCPC
Dr. Katherine Harman
Dr. Karen Keown
Pulmonary Function Laboratory - Respiratory Therapists
Opninder Dosanjh, RRT
Barbara Hornsby, RRT
Jannet Pon, RRT
For more information please contact:
Division of Respiratory Medicine,
Department of Paediatrics
Room 1C31A, BC Children’s Hospital
4480 Oak Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Fax: 604 875 3293