Our Members

InstitutionRepresentative, Designation
Alberta Children’s Hospital
Calgary, AB
Natalie Yanchar, Site Director
Mary Brindle, Site Associate Director
Stollery Children’s Hospital
Edmonton, AB
Ioana Bratu, Site Director
Simon Byrns, Site Associate Director
Children’s Hospital of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC
Robert Baird*, Site Director
Hannah Piper, Site Associate Director
Victoria General Hospital
Victoria, BC
Martina Mudri, Site Director
Allen Hayashi, Site Associate Director
Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg
Winnipeg, MB
Fouad Youssef, Site Director
Melanie Morris, Site Associate Director
Janeway Children’s Health and Rehabilitation Centre
St. John’s NL
David Price, Site Director
IWK Health Centre
Halifax, NS
Christopher Blackmore, Site Director
McMaster Children’s Hospital
Hamilton, ON
Michael Livingston, Site Director
Children’s Hospital London Health Sciences Centre
London, ON
Andreana Bütter*, Site Director
Natashia Seemann, Site Associate Director
Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario
Ottawa, ON
Ahmed Nasr*, Site Director
Hospital for Sick Children
Toronto, ON
Augusto Zani, Site Director
Mercedes Pilkington, Site Associate Director
Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Sainte-Justine
Mtl, QC
Nelson Piché, Site Director
Mona Beaunoyer, Site Associate Director
The Montreal Children’s Hospital
Mtl, QC
Sherif Emil***, Site Director
Pramod Puligandla*, Site Associate Director
CHU de Québec – Université Laval
Québec, QC
Pascale Prasil, Site Director
CIUSSS de l’Estrie – Centre hospitalier universitaire de Sherbrooke
Sherbrooke, QC
Sandeep Mayer*, Site Director
Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital
Saskatoon, SK
Amanda Hall, Site Director
Kris Milbrandt, Site Associate Director

*Steering committee member
***Steering committee member (ex officio)

** Steering committee chair

Dr. Ahmed Nasr

Site Director and Chair
Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario

Dr. Ahmed Nasr is the Chief of the Division of Pediatric Surgery, the Medical Director of the Trauma Program, and a staff physician and surgeon specializing in pediatric surgery. He completed his medical studies, general surgery training, and a Ph.D. in Egypt. Upon moving to Canada, he completed his Canadian medical training at the University of Toronto along with his Pediatric Surgical Fellowship and his NICU Fellowship. Additionally, he earned his Masters in Clinical Epidemiology at this time. He holds an academic appointment as an Associate Professor with the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa and is a Clinical Investigator with the CHEO Research Institute.

Dr. Nasr is the principal investigator and founder of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgeons Evidence-Based Resource, a knowledge base that provides and promotes evidence-based practice amongst pediatric surgeons on a global level, thereby ensuring children and youth receive the best surgical care globally. As the Chair of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgeons Research Committee, Dr. Nasr is pro-active with research and has over 100 peer reviewed publications.

His clinical interests and subspecialties include pediatric surgery, minimally invasive surgery, pediatric trauma, and pediatric laparoscopic simulations. He is actively involved with the national Choosing Wisely campaign, Ontario Trauma Association, and Ontario Congenital Anomalies Committee.

Natalie L. Yanchar, MD, MSc, FRCS(C)

Site Director
Alberta Children’s Hospital

Clinical Professor in Surgery, University of Calgary

“Without the data, the chatta don’t matta” is the mantra that Natalie lives by.   Holding a Master’s degree in Community Health and Epidemiology (Dalhousie University) and 22 years of practice as a pediatric surgeon, she strongly believes in the immense value of evidence-informed clinical practice and the opportunities that CanCORPS will present to advance this in the world of Pediatric Surgery. Previously practicing at the IWK Health Center in Halifax, Natalie joined the Department of Surgery at the Alberta Children’s Hospital 5 years ago and continues her research in pediatric trauma and congenital anomalies.  Her track record in peer-reviewed publications, research funding and administrative work with CIHR adds strength to the CanCORPS Steering Committee and she is thrilled to see the growth and potential of this new Canadian Consortium.

Ioana Bratu

Site Director
Stollery Children’s Hospital

Dr. Ioana Bratu is a pediatric general surgeon at the Stollery Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta, and Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Alberta. The research interests at the University of Alberta for our 5 pediatric surgeons range from neonatal surgery outcomes, IBD basic and clinical investigations, oncology outcomes, trauma prevention/process outcomes, global surgery outcomes, and educational/quality initiatives.

Robert Baird

Site Director
Children’s Hospital of British Columbia

Program Director, Pediatric General Surgery
Surgical Trauma Director, BC Children’s Hospital

Clinical Associate Professor, Department of surgery, Faculty of medicine 

BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute

As a clinical scientist, I focus on research with direct clinical relevance to my area of practice: pediatric surgery. I engage in systematic reviews of available evidence and perform high impact single or multi-institutional clinical trials concerning congenital or acquired surgical conditions in children.

My current specific research focuses includes pediatric thyroid conditions, global pediatric surgery capacity building, family-centered care and surgical education.

Hannah Piper, MD, FRCSC, FACS

Site Associate Director
Children’s Hospital of British Columbia

Associate Professor, Department of Surgery
University of British Columbia
Surgical Director, Children’s Intestinal Rehabilitation Program
BC Children’s Hospital

Hannah Piper | BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute (bcchr.ca)

My research focuses on children who have lost a significant amount of their intestine or whose intestines do not function properly. Often these children have difficulty gaining weight, reaching their growth potential, and are susceptible to liver disease and infection.  As the Surgical Director of the Children’s Intestinal Rehabilitation Program (CHIRP) at BC Children’s, I help lead a multidisciplinary team dedicated to caring for these children and finding ways to improve their quality of life through novel research initiatives.  This includes studies looking at the intestinal microbiota and the use of pro and prebiotics to improve gut function, as well as determining how changes to gut bacteria impact the body’s immune system and overall level of inflammation in the body.

Fouad Youssef, MD, MSc, FRCSC

Site Director
Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg

Pediatric Surgeon, Assistant professor, Department of Surgery

Max Rady College of Medicine University of Manitoba

HSC-Children’s Hospital and Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba

Dr. Fouad Youssef completed his medical school, and general surgery training at the University of Damascus, Damascus- Syria. Upon his arrival to Canada, he pursued and completed research fellowship and a master’s degree in Experimental Surgery at McGill University, Montreal- Canada focusing on the perinatal management of Gastroschisis. Then He completed his Canadian medical training in General Surgery at the University of Toronto in 2021. He subsequently finished his fellowship of pediatric surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), University of Ottawa.

His academic and research focuses include abdominal wall defects, minimally invasive surgery, pediatric surgical oncology, and evidence-based medicine. He built a special interest in Surgical teaching of technical skills and quality improvement.

Melanie Morris

Site Associate Director
Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg

Dr. Melanie Morris is a Métis mother an Associate Professor in the Departments of Surgery and Pediatrics and Child Health and was the first Indigenous pediatric surgeon in Canada. She created a minimally invasive program in pediatric urology that helps avoid having to send children out of province for treatment and has published research in pediatric surgery, urology, congenital illnesses, and Indigenous health. She was appointed as the first Indigenous Lead role within the Department of Pediatrics and Child Health at the University of Manitoba in 2019.

Dr. Morris mentors’ Indigenous medical learners within RFHS and has been instrumental in spearheading the transformation of the Children’s Hospital to a culturally safe space for Indigenous children and their families, by developing a new Indigenous Community Healing Space that will allow families to nurture their whole self, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.

Helping found the Winnipeg Global Surgery Office, Dr. Morris currently serves as Medical Director, created outreach clinics in Nunavut, received a cross appointment as Associate Professor at UBC to teach in the Masters in Global Surgery and is a mentor in the Gender Equity Initiative in Global Surgery to address gender disparities in the surgery, obstetrics, and anesthesia (SAO) workforce worldwide. Melanie was recently appointed as Region 2 representative, on the Surgical Foundations Advisory Committee for the Royal College of Physicians and surgeons of Canada by the Chair of the committee.  She was asked to provides bring experience, knowledge, and expertise on the health Indigenous Peoples and Gender equity and how best to incorporated this knowledge in surgical education.

Dr. Morris has been awarded the Pediatric Chairs of Canada (PCC) 2021 Emerging Academic Leader Award, the Ongomiizwin Health Services Award for Respect, the Manitoba 150 Award and was named one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada in 2021. Melanie is an avid runner, Manitoba Runners Association Female Road Racer of the year for 2019. Melanie enjoys most spending time with her family and particularly playing outside in the wonderful winter snow with her young son and taking care of their backyard chickens.

Andreana Bütter

Site Director
Children’s Hospital London Health Sciences Centre

Chair/Chief, Division of Pediatric Surgery
Professor, Western University, Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry

Pediatric Surgeon, Children’s Hospital, LHSC
800 Commissioner’s Road East, Rm B1-190
London, Ontario, Canada
N6A 4G5

Office: (519) 685-8401
Fax: (519) 685-8241
Email: Andreana.butter@lhsc.on.ca

Dr. Bütter completed medical school at the University of Ottawa and General Surgery residency at Western University.  During residency, she also pursued a year of research at the Montreal Children’s Hospital in fetal surgery and congenital diaphragmatic hernia, which culminated in a Master of Science degree from McGill University in 2001.  After residency, she returned to Montreal for a Pediatric Surgery fellowship at Sainte Justine Hospital (Université de Montréal). In 2005, she joined the Division of Pediatric Surgery and the Department of Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital (LHSC) as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery.  In 2012, she was promoted to Associate Professor, and in 2020 to full Professor, becoming one of the first female Professors of Surgery at Western University.

In 2018, Dr. Bütter was elected Chair of the Canadian Undergraduate Surgical Education Committee (CUSEC) and became Chair and founding member of the Canadian Conference for the Advancement of Surgical Education (C-CASE). She has been the Vice-Chair of the Pediatric Surgery Board Examination Committee at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada since 2019 and was previously member of the Pediatric Surgery Specialty Committee. She is actively involved in undergraduate education and was the Associate Director of Surgical Education from 2014-2021.  She also serves as the faculty lead for numerous Schlulich Medicine & Dentistry groups.  Dr. Bütter has received funding from the AMOSO Innovation Fund, the Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgeons, and a Collaborative Research Seed Grant from Schulich Medicine & Dentistry.

Her clinical and research areas of interest include Pediatric Thoracic and General Surgery, such as congenital diaphragmatic hernia, bracing for pectus carinatum, nonoperative management of appendicitis and minimally invasive surgery.  Dr. Bütter helped to develop the first Canadian Robotic Pediatric Surgery Program. She is also a member of the Canadian Consortium for Research in Pediatric Surgery (CanCORPS) and recent member of the Pediatric Surgical Oncology Research Collaborative (PSORC).

Natashia Seemann

Site Associate Director
Children’s Hospital London Health Sciences Centre

Associate Director Children’s Hospital at London Health Sciences Centre

Dr. Seemann started her medical career in London where she completed medical school at Western University.  She then completed residency training in Toronto, as well as a Masters in Surgical Education through the Clinician Investigators Program. She completed her pediatric general surgery fellowship in Halifax, and then returned to London as an attending Pediatric Surgeon, clinical researcher and Assistant Professor at Western University.

Dr. Seemann’s specific research interests are in surgical education, sociocultural issues within medicine, pediatric surgical oncology and inflammatory bowel disease. She has experience with both quantitative and qualitative research, and is affiliated with the Centre for Education Research and Innovation at Western University. She is also the surgical site lead for Children’s Oncology Group and the Pediatric Surgical Oncology Research Consortium.

Nelson Piché

Site Director
Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Sainte-Justine

Dr Piché is pediatric surgeon at Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Sainte-Justine (CHUSJ) and Associate Clinical Professor in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal. After completing a fellowships in pediatric surgery at CHU Ste-Justine, Dr Piché spend one year at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New-York City to complete a pediatric surgical oncology fellowship. Dr Piché is committed to advancing knowledge in pediatric surgical outcomes and training the next generation of clinicians. Highly invested in quality improvement in pediatric surgery and surgical safety for children, he is a member of the CHU Ste-Justine (CHUSJ) Quality Improvement committee since 2013, and has a fond interest in outcomes measures. His training and experience provide him with valuable clinical insights on pediatric surgical oncology. He has led the planification and the surgery for the first two Hyperthermic IntraPeritoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC) performed in young children in Canada in 2021.

Since 2017, he has authored or co-authored 25 articles on the management and outcomes in pediatric surgery .

He is the coordinator of the monthly scientific meeting of the Department of Surgery of Ste-Justine Hospital and a founding and active member of the Pediatric Surgical Oncology Research Consortium (PSORC) and the Canadian Consortium for Pediatric Research and Surgery (CanCORPS). Additionally, he is an active member of the Children Oncology Group (COG) and a research committee member of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgery (CAPS).

Sherif Emil, MD, CM 

Site Director , former founding Chair
The Montreal Children’s Hospital

Investigator, RI-McGill University Health Centre, Montreal Children’s Hospital
Child Health and Human Development Program

Professor, Department of Pediatric Surgery, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, McGill University

Department of Pediatric Surgery, Division of General Surgery, MUHC

My research focuses on optimizing outcomes of a number of common pediatric surgical diseases and studying innovations in the treatment of chest wall anomalies. I am also initiating a large research effort in enhanced recovery after surgery, patient-reported outcomes, and patient-centred care. I am interested in elevating the quality of pediatric surgical research through engaging in prospective studies, clinical trials, and multi-centre research.

I currently serve as Chair of the Canadian Consortium for Research in Pediatric Surgery (CanCORPS). This consortium consists of 15 pediatric surgical centres across Canada which have come together to perform clinical research aimed at minimizing variability in care and optimizing patient outcomes through collaboration and innovation.

Finally, I am heavily involved in global surgery and interested in studying ways of increasing pediatric surgical capacity in low resource settings.

Pramod Puligandla, MD, M.Sc. 

Site Associate Director
The Montreal Children’s Hospital

Associate Investigator, RI-McGill University Health Centre, Montreal Children’s Hospital, Translational Research in Respiratory Diseases Program

Professor, Department of Pediatric Surgery, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, McGill University

Department of Pediatric Surgery, Division of General Surgery, MUHC pramod.puligandla@mcgill.ca

My research focuses on health outcomes regarding surgically correctable anomalies, particularly those affecting newborns and infants (e.g., congenital diaphragmatic hernia [CDH] and gastroschisis [GS]). My major research directive seeks to determine relationships between prenatal risk factors, in-hospital treatments and the long-term disability experienced by these patients.

As director of the CDH Long-Term Follow-Up Clinic at the Montreal Children’s Hospital, I lead a multdisciplinary team that looks at the risks and complications in CDH infants. Specific areas of inquiry include long-term lung function, feeding and growth, as well as neurodevelopment. My other major research directives include my involvement as co-director of the Canadian Pediatric Surgery Network (CAPSNet), a population-based warehouse of in-hospital outcomes for CDH and GS, as well as my involvement as a steering committee member of the Canadian Consortium for Pediatric Surgical Research (CanCORPS), a national research effort involving 15 pediatric institutions.

Pascale Prasil

Site Director
CHU de Québec – Université Laval

Dr Pascale Prasil did her medical training at Université Laval medical Faculty in Quebec City.

She pursued her surgical training afterwards in Quebec City followed by a fellow in pediatric surgery at McGill University.

She has since gone on to be a member of the surgical department of the University Laval working as an active member of the Faculty as a clinical teacher and responsible for the training of the medical students as well as the residents of the pediatric and surgery program.

Amanda Hall

Site Director
Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital

Assistant Professor Department of Surgery
Division of Pediatric General Surgery
Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital

Amanda Hall completed her medical training and general surgery residency at the University of Saskatchewan.  She then stayed in Saskatchewan to obtain her PhD in Health Sciences, focusing on parenteral nutrition-associated liver disease in infants.  Following this, pursued fellowship training in Pediatric General Surgery at McGill University in Montreal.  She has recently started practice back in her home province of Saskatchewan, where she works at the Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital.

She divides her time between clinical duties and basic science work in her laboratory.  Her current area of research is intestinal adaptation, using an intestinal organoid/stem cell model.  She also participates in clinical research, especially multi-site studies such as those organized through CanCORPS. She enjoys research because of its unpredictable, exciting nature and the possibility of contributing new knowledge to the field of pediatric surgery, for colleagues and families. In her free time, she enjoys hiking with her husband and dog.

Martina Mudri, MD MSc FRCSC

Site Director
Victoria General Hospital

Vancouver Island Health Authority
Victoria, BC

I am a Pediatric Surgeon in Victoria, BC, and Clinical Instructor with the University of British Columbia Department of Surgery. I received my MD from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, SK and completed General Surgery Residency at Western University in London, ON. During my residency, I studied the effects of tracheal occlusion on Wnt signaling in a rabbit model of congenital diaphragmatic hernia and obtained a Master of Science in Surgery under the supervision of Dr. Andreana Bütter. I completed Pediatric Surgery Fellowship at BC Children’s Hospital with the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC. My research interests lie in translational research, including the study of lung development in CDH lung hypoplasia. I am passionate about patient and family centered care, evidence-based practice, and quality improvement. As the leader of quality assurance for Pediatric General Surgery in Victoria, I am thrilled to join CanCORPS and participate in high quality collaborative research with the aim to improve pediatric surgical care.

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