Division Head of Gynecologic Oncology, and Co-Founder of Ovarian Cancer Research (OvCaRe) Program, BC Cancer Agency

I’m lucky to love the work I do. International metrics show that we are providing excellent care for ovarian cancer patients here in B.C., and I’m so proud that the BC Cancer Agency has some of the best outcomes in the world for ovarian cancer, a significant area of our translational research.

I believe that the best clinical care occurs when you combine it with translational research, allowing new findings to move from bench to bedside quickly. This structure also promotes a culture of working toward the best outcomes. I feel that we’ve done this very well in B.C. and it shows!

When you work in the cancer field, there is always a feeling that you can do better. You want to see every patient cured, and it is frustrating at times to not be able to achieve this.

But when I look back over the twenty years that I’ve been here, I see that patients are living longer and better, and incrementally, we are curing more people. This progress is what keeps me inspired to continue my work every day.

As a gynecological oncologist, I’m able to approach my work from a number of different angles, from the clinic where I see patients, to the surgeries I perform at VGH, to the surgical patients I see pre-and post-operatively at the Agency.

I’ve also been privileged to be the Tumour Group Chair in Gynecology for the past ten years, and would unequivocally say that province-wide, our tumour group is one of the best! We love the people we work with, get along well, and this positive, respectful environment makes a huge difference in the work we are able to do together.

Another thing that is perhaps a bit different from other tumour groups is that we are very actively engaged in prevention, particularly for cervical cancer. We’re major advocates of the vaccination program, and collaborate with the BC Centre for Disease Control to promote the HPV vaccine.

I look forward to major advances in cervical screening in the next few years, and I strongly believe that cervical cancer can be virtually 100% preventable. Population-based cervical cancer screening began here in B.C., and we’re very proud of this program. But we can always strive for better results, and I’m very optimistic about this!

Until next time,

Dianne