World Health Summit Regional Meeting - North America, Montreal 2017

Health and Healthcare Delivery in Pluralistic Societies 

Date: May 8-9, 2017
Venue: Palais des congrès de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada
Hosts: Université de Montréal + Institut de recherches Cliniques de Montréal

The Université de Montréal and the Montreal Clinical Research Institute (IRCM) are proud to announce that they will be hosting the 1st World Health Summit (WHS) of the M8 Alliance to be held in North America. The world leaders in global health will be attending this prestigious event, including over 800 researchers, doctors, industry leaders, decision-makers, government members and civil society actors from around the world.

Based on the theme of “Health and Healthcare Delivery in Pluralistic Societies,” this interdisciplinary event will focus on the question of human diversity in the practice, education, research and public policy pertaining to health.

In pluralistic societies that welcome diversity, such as ours, many factors will impact health and the provision of healthcare, including globalization, immigration, social and economic inequalities, lifestyle, and culture. We believe that it is our mission, as scholars, to turn our attention to this important phenomenon and to analyze it in depth.

This event is one of the most important of its kind in Canada. It is with the utmost enthusiasm that we invite you to attend.

In order to explore the different aspects of the central theme, the conference will be divided into four subtopics:

New Frontiers in Medical Treatment
Development of precision medicine, rare and genetic diseases, viral infections, diabetes, and antibiotic resistance.

Health and Healthcare Delivery for Specific Groups
First Nations health, health and immigration, health in the workplace, healthcare quality and patient safety.

Environmental, Social and Cultural Determinants of Health
Transformation of the urban environment and its impact on the health of city dwellers, the promotion of healthy lifestyle habits and its influence on healthcare costs.

Medical Education for Optimal Healthcare
Medical education and the evolution of the physicians’ role in society, the global health curriculum and the accreditation of medical schools.

Welcome Message

As the president of the 2017 World Health Summit, I am pleased to welcome you to Montreal as it celebrates its 375th anniversary.

The Faculty of Medicine of the Université de Montréal will host the first regional WHS meeting in North America, in partnership with the École de santé publique of the Université de Montréal and the Montreal Clinical Research Institute.

As one of the most prestigious institutions in research and health education in Canada, the Faculty of Medicine of the Université de Montréal is proud to belong to the M8 Alliance, a vast network of leaders in global health that promotes collaboration and research in fields of study that will have a crucial impact on humanity's future.

We aim to train healthcare personnel and to expand the horizons of knowledge in order to improve the health and quality of life of our fellow citizens so that they may lead healthy lives and attain their fullest potential. With this goal in mind, we have thrown ourselves into the organization of this great international annual assembly on health, since we know that we need to work together in order to succeed.

The subject of the 2017 Montreal gathering, "Health and Healthcare Delivery in Pluralistic Societies," will give us the opportunity to create a forum for interdisciplinary discussion and to emphasize human diversity in the practice, education, research and public policy pertaining to healthcare.

This event is a tremendous scientific and political platform for the discussion of current issues such as immigrant and First Nations health, the appearance of new treatment-resistant viruses, the quality of life and safety of patients, health in large urban environments and the evolution of healthcare and medical education.

Happy Montreal Summit!

Hélène Boisjoly
President of the WHS
Dean, Faculty of Medicine
Université de Montréal


The program will be structured by four main themes:

New Frontiers in Medical Treatment
Development of precision medicine, rare and genetic diseases, viral infections, diabetes, and antibiotic resistance.

Health and Healthcare Delivery for Specific Groups
First Nations health, health and immigration, health in the workplace, healthcare quality and patient safety.

Environmental, Social and Cultural Determinants of Health
Transformation of the urban environment and its impact on the health of city dwellers, the promotion of healthy lifestyle habits and its influence on healthcare costs.

Medical Education for Optimal Healthcare
Medical education and the evolution of the physicians’ role in society, the global health curriculum and the accreditation of medical schools.

Please note that all presentations will be given in English. Simultaneous translation will be offered for keynote presentations.

Program overview

Detailed program

All information on speakers, topics and presentations is available in our interactive program planner



The  World Health Summit Regional Meeting brings together leading researchers, physicians, government officials and representatives from industry, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and healthcare systems worldwide.

Among the confirmed speakers are:
(in alphabetical order)

Government Keynote Speakers

Gaétan Barrette

Minister of Health and Social Services - Quebec, Canada

Dr Gaétan Barrette is Quebec’s Minister of Health and Social Services since 2014. A 1985 graduate in medicine of l’Université de Montréal, Dr Gaétan Barrette became a member of Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in 1989. In 1991, he pursued a Fellowship in Vascular and Surgical Radiology at the University of California, San Diego. He currently practises at Maisonneuve-Rosemont hospital where he has been an active member since 1990. Dr. Barrette has been President of the Fédération des médecins spécialistes du Québec between 2006 and 2014. He was also Chairman of the Board of the Financière des professionnels inc. which manages a $2 billion portfolio. He was also a member of the Boards of the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ). Dr Barrette participates regularly in various conferences and forums on the subject of specialized medicine throughout Quebec, across Canada and abroad.

Geoffrey Kelley

Minister responsible for Native Affairs - Quebec, Canada

Geoffrey Kelley holds a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in modern Canadian history from McGill University. He taught for 15 years before joining Alliance Québec for several years, then became a political attaché and chief of staff. He oversaw questions such as education, higher education, the Charter of the French language, municipal affairs and public security.

He was initially elected MNA for Jacques-Cartier in 1994. He subsequently chaired a number of committees, including the Committee on Public Administration, the Committee on Social Affairs, the Committee on Education, the Committee on Health and Social Services, and the Select Committee on Dying with Dignity. He served several times as official opposition critic for Aboriginal affairs, the Far North and the family and was also responsible for relations with the English-speaking community. He has achieved recognition above all for his role as Minister for Native Affairs and Minister responsible for Native Affairs, a position that he has occupied several times. He is serving his seventh consecutive mandate as MNA for Jacques-Cartier. In April 2014, he was appointed Minister responsible for Native Affairs for the third time.

Jane Philpott

Minister of Health, Canada

Prior to entering politics, Dr. Philpott led an extensive career in family medicine, public health, medical education and global advocacy for HIV/AIDS. Dr. Philpott studied medicine at the University of Western Ontario, completed a Family Medicine residency at the University of Ottawa, and a Tropical Medicine fellowship in Toronto. In 2012, she completed a Master of Public Health degree at the University of Toronto. Between 1989 and 1998, Dr. Philpott lived in Niger Republic, West Africa where she practiced general medicine and helped to develop a training program for village health workers. She practiced as a family physician at Markham Stouffville Hospital for more than 15 years and served as Chief of Family Medicine from 2008 to 2014. She also led the opening of the Health for All Family Health Team – a new primary care home for 10,000 patients in Markham-Stouffville, and the Markham Family Medicine Teaching Unit that has trained 45 new family physicians in the community since 2010. Additionally, she is an Associate Professor in the University of Toronto’s Department of Family & Community Medicine. Some of her global advocacy work includes founding Give a Day to World AIDS in 2004, which has raised over $4 million to help those affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa. Dr. Philpott was the first Family Medicine lead for the Toronto Addis Ababa Academic Collaboration, where she was instrumental in helping Addis Ababa University develop Ethiopia’s first training program for Family Medicine.

Keynote Speaker

Timothy Caulfield

Trudeau Fellow and Professor, Faculty of Law and School of Public Health Research Director, Health Law Institute, University of Alberta, Canada

Timothy Caulfield is a Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy, a Professor in the Faculty of Law and the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta and Research Director of the Health Law Institute at the University of Alberta. Over the past several years he has been involved in a variety of interdisciplinary research endeavours that have allowed him to publish over 300 academic articles. He is a Fellow of the Trudeau Foundation and the Principal Investigator for a number of large interdisciplinary projects that explore the ethical, legal and health policy issues associated with a range of topics, including stem cell research, genetics, patient safety, the prevention of chronic disease, obesity policy, the commercialization of research, complementary and alternative medicine and access to health care. Professor Caulfield is and has been involved with a number of national and international policy and research ethics committees. He has won numerous academic awards and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.  He writes frequently for the popular press and is the author of two recent national bestsellers: The Cure for Everything: Untangling the Twisted Messages about Health, Fitness and Happiness (Penguin 2012) and Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything?: When Celebrity Culture and Science Clash (Penguin 2015).

Noel Hayman

Clinical Director, Inala Indigenous Health Service, Australia

Dr Noel Hayman was one of the first two Indigenous medical students to graduate from the University of Queensland in 1990. Noel is Clinical Director of the Inala Indigenous Health Service in Brisbane. In developing this service, he has been instrumental in demonstrating how mainstream primary health care services can be made appropriate to the needs of urban Aboriginal populations. Noel’s interests include improving Indigenous access to mainstream health services and supporting medical education in Indigenous health. Professor Hayman received the 2003 Centenary Medal for his long service to primary health care in Aboriginal communities and the 2007 inaugural Close the Gap Indigenous Health Award (Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation Queensland). In 2011 he was Queensland Australian of the Year. Noel is on numerous National and State Committees.

Brian Hodges

Executive Vice-President Education, University Health Network, Canada

Brian D. Hodges MD, PhD, FRCPC is Professor in the Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Education (OISE/UT) at the University of Toronto; the Richard and Elizabeth Currie Chair in Health Professions Education Research at the Wilson Centre for Research in Education and Executive Vice President Education at the University Health Network (Toronto General, Toronto Western Princess Margaret and Toronto Rehab Hospitals). He leads the AMS Phoenix Project: A Call to Caring, an initiative to rebalance the technical and compassionate dimensions of healthcare.

Joanne Liu

International President, Doctors without Borders, Switzerland

Trained at McGill University School of Medicine and specialized in pediatrics at Montreal’s Sainte-Justine hospital, she holds a fellowship in pediatric emergency medicine from New York University School of Medicine, and an International Master’s in Health Leadership from McGill University. She is also an associate professor at the University of Montreal and a professor in practice at McGill University. She has worked in many conflict zones, including in Palestine, Central African Republic, DRC and Sudan’s Darfur region.

Janet Rossant

President and Scientific Director, Gairdner Foundation; Senior Scientist and Chief of Research Emeritus, Hospital for Sick Children, Canada

Janet Rossant, CC, PhD, FRS, FRSC is Senior Scientist and Chief of Research Emeritus at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto and President and Scientific Director of the Gairdner Foundation. She is an internationally recognized developmental and stem cell biologist, exploring the origins of stem cells in the early embryo and their applications to understanding and treating human disease. She led the research institute at the Hospital for Sick Children from 2005 to 2015. She has received many honours and recognition for her work, including four honorary degrees, and election to the Royal Societies of London and Canada, and the National Academy of Sciences, USA. 


Antoine Flahault

Director, Institute of Global Health, Switzerland

A professor of Public Health at University Descartes, Sorbonne Paris Cité, he is chair of the Centre Virchow Villermé de Santé Publique Paris-Berlin, co-chairs the European Academic Global Health Alliance, is president of the European Agency for Public Health Education Accreditation and Founding Director of the Institute of Global Health, University of Geneva. In 2016, Antoine Flahault was the International President of the World Health Summit.

Pierre Fournier

Dean, School of Public Health, Université de Montréal, Canada

Pierre Fournier studied in medicine (Nice, France), in biostatistics (Paris VI, France), in tropical medicine (Aix-Marseille, France) and in public health (Montréal, Canada).
Before joining the Université de Montréal in 1986, he worked at the African Development Bank (Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire), at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Nice (France) and in Burkina Faso as Deputy Regional Health Officer.

He works in the areas of maternal health, health systems analysis, program evaluation and human resources development, in various countries: developed (Canada, Europe), transitional (Central Europe and Balkans) and developing (Africa, Latin America).
He is a Professor (Department of Social and Preventive Medicine), and a Researcher of the Global Health Research Group (Research Center of the University of Montreal Hospital). He was director of the Leadership program in population and health (funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) and a consultant for the major national and international health organizations (WHO, UNFPA, UNICEF, IDRC, CIDA).

He was the founding director of the International Health Unit (1989-1996) and Director of the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine (1996-2002). He was appointed in 2013 as the first Dean of the School of Public Health at the Université de Montréal.

Sarah Fraser

Clinical psychologist and professor at the school of Psychoeducation at Université de Montréal, Canada

Sarah Fraser is a clinical psychologist and professor at the school of Psychoeducation at Montreal University, researcher at the Institut de Recherche en Santé Publique de l’Université de Montreal. She works in the field of Aboriginal health, youth protection services and community wellbeing. Over the past years she has been working with an Inuit community in an action-research project around community mobilization for the improvement of family oriented prevention services. Inspired by systemic thinking, she has explored a variety of themes including micro-interactions within youth protection services, associations between family wellbeing and community wellbeing as well as system dynamics in institutional and community change. More specifically she is interested in the interface between community and institutions ; patients and services.

Luiz Augusto Galvão

Center for International Relations / Fiocruz, Brazil

Dr. Luiz Augusto Galvão represents Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (FIOCRUZ).  He is a medical doctor with a Master’s and a Doctorate degrees in Public Health.  Dr. Galvão's professional career includes extensive teaching and research experience at FIOCRUZ and a number of technical publications. He spent 25 years at PAHO/WHO as head of sustainable development and health equity. He served as president of the Brazilian Society of Toxicology and currently is a senior researcher at FIOCRUZ´s Center for Global Health.

Lise Gauvin

Full Professor Vice-Dean Research, School of Public Health, Université de Montréal, Researcher Associate Scientific Director for Population Health Research, Centre de recherche, Canada

Lise Gauvin is a Full Professor and Vice-Dean for research at the School of Public Health at the Université de Montréal and a Researcher and Associate Scientific Director for Population Health Research at the Centre de recherche du Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CRCHUM). She completed her doctoral work in physical activity sciences in 1985 at the Université de Montréal. In addition to her current academic position, she has held positions at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario and Concordia University in Montreal, Québec. In September 2015, she was named a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. In August 2016, she was named a member of the new Institute Advisory Board on Health Promotion and Disease Prevention of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Her research focuses on socio-environmental and individual determinants of involvement physical activity and the reach, acceptability, and impact of interventions to promote physical and prevent eating disorders. She uses innovative data collection and analysis techniques including real-time data capture, multilevel modeling, and natural experiments to gain new insights into intervention.  

François Gemenne

Executive Director of the interdisciplinary research program Politics of the Earth, France

François Gemenne is the executive director of the interdisciplinary research programme Politics of the Earth at Sciences Po (Médialab) in Paris. A specialist of environmental geopolitics and migration dynamics, he is also a FNRS senior research associate at the University of Liège, where he is the Director of the Hugo Observatory. He also lectures on environmental and migration policies in various universities, including Sciences Po (Paris and Grenoble) and the Free University of Brussels, where he holds the Bernheim Chair on Peace and Citizenship. His research deals mostly with environmental and migration governance. He has worked in particular with populations displaced by environmental changes, including natural disasters, and the policies of adaptation to climate change. He has been involved in a large number of international research projects on these issues, including EACH-FOR, HELIX, EDGE and MECLEP, for which he is the global research coordinator. He also coordinated the DEVAST project, one of the first international projects to examine the social and political consequences of the Fukushima disaster.

Marie-Eve Goyer

Medical referent at national institute for public health of Quebec (INSPQ), ministry of health and social services of Québec and Quebec College of physicians (CMQ), Canada

Marie-Eve Goyer, MD, MSc, is a general practionner with a master degree in public health. Most of her clinical work is with marginalized population. She is an HIV, HCV and opioid substitution therapy doctor at Montreal universitary hospital outpatient clinic (CHUM) and at the CRAN (center for research and help for opioid users). Sh is medical chief of inner city health and homelessness at CIUSS Centre Sud of Montreal. Dr Goyer is professor in charge at the University of Montreal where she created a new mandatory clerkship named «health inequalities and the social duty of doctors». She is involved with designing new outreach clinics for marginalized populations within the family medicine residency. She is invited professor at the University of Sherbrooke microprogram on addiction for health professionals. She is a medical referent at national institute for public health of Quebec (INSPQ), ministry of health and social services of Québec and Quebec College of physicians (CMQ).

Stephen C. Groft

Senior Advisor to the Director, National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, NIH, United States

Assisted in establishing the Office of Orphan Products Development at FDA in 1982, served as the Executive Director of the National Commission on Orphan Diseases from 1987-1989, and served as the Director of NIH’s Office of Rare Diseases Research from 1993-2014 stimulating rare diseases research and developing information for patients, families, health care providers, academic/foundation research investigators, the biopharmaceutical industry, and the public about rare diseases, ongoing and completed research and clinical trials, and patient advocacy groups.  Stimulated the development of the Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center, the International Rare Diseases Research Consortium, the International Conference on Rare Diseases and Orphan Drugs, the Rare Diseases Clinical Research Network, assisting in the development of the Undiagnosed Diseases Program at NIH, and developed common data elements for patient registries. ORDR co-sponsored over 1,300 scientific conferences to assist in identifying research priorities and developing research agendas for the investigation of rare diseases. 

Paul Gross

Physician, Spectrum Health Vancouver Native Health Clinic Medical Director and Co-Founder, The Dudes Club: "A Brotherhood for Men's Health" Clinical Assistant Professor, Dept of Family Practice, UBC

Dr. Gross is a family physician with a focus on men’s health and HIV. He has a full-time practice at Spectrum Health, a multi-disciplinary primary care clinic, located near St. Paul's Hospital in downtown Vancouver. Since 2009, he has also been working at Vancouver Native Health Society (VNHS) on East Hastings, which provides a full range of health care services to mainly Indigenous people living in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. He is the Co-Founder and Medical Director of The Dudes Club, an innovative, community-driven men's health program incorporating Indigenous approaches to healing and wellness. He is also Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Practice at University of British Columbia, where he is involved in teaching and research.

Steve Harvey

Dean, Suliman S. Olayan School of Business, American University of Beirut Professor, Management, Lebanon

Dr. Steve Harvey is Dean of the Suliman S. Olayan School of Business, American University of Beirut. Harvey was appointed dean and professor of management in 2016, after having served as Dean of the John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, and Dean of the Williams School of Business and Associate VP, Research at Bishop’s University. Harvey earned his doctorate from the University of Guelph in 1996. Since then, he has been an active scholar, professor, senior executive, and consultant in management and human resources. Harvey’s research has been recognized by various awards, subsidized by several funding agencies, and presented at multiple conferences worldwide. As a strong advocate of the view that practice and research inform teaching, he has been regularly conveying his research findings and practice knowledge within the classroom. He has won several awards for teaching in areas of human resource management, organizational behavior, organizational conflict, and negotiations.

Marie-Josée Hébert

Vice-Rector of Research, Discovery, Creation and Innovation, Université de Montréal, Canada

Marie-Josée Hébert earned a specialized degree in nephrology at the Université de Montréal, followed by postdoctoral studies at Harvard. Dr. Hébert is a researcher and nephrologist-transplant physician at CHUM, professor in the faculty of medicine and holds the Shire Chair in Renal Transplantation and Regeneration. She is also co-director of the Canadian National Transplant Research Program and founder of numerous interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral research groups.Her work has enabled the discovery of new mechanisms at work in the rejection of transplanted organs. In 2015, Dr. Hébert received the Dr. John B. Dossetor Award from the Kidney Foundation of Canada in recognition of her outstanding contribution to research in kidney diseases. 

Karen Hill

M.D., CCFP. Karennanoron (Ga-la-na-no-low), Canada

Karen is Mohawk Turtle Clan from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory in Southern Ontario.  She is the mother of 2 boys and step-mother to 5 daughters. She graduated from McMaster University School of Medicine in 2003 and finished her residency in Family Medicine at McMaster in 2005. Karen is the inaugural recipient of the Thomas Dignan award in Indigenous Health – 2015 and is the current Vice President of the Indigenous Physicians Association.  

Karen currently works as the Lead Physician with Juddah’s Place (Six Nations of the Grand River Territory), a collaborative primary care practice in partnership with Traditional Medicine Practitioners Elva Jamieson and Valarie King. In her practice Karen utilizes the functional medicine approach to address the complexity of chronic disease and link concepts of genetics, environment and physiology to traditional ways of healing such as food, rest, culture and experience. Karen’s vision is to see traditional knowledge and practice restored to the centre of health care for indigenous people as a key determinant of health and pathway to healing.

Didier Jutras-Aswad

Addiction psychiatrist and researcher at the CHUM Research Centre , Canada

Didier Jutras-Aswad is an addiction psychiatrist and researcher at the CHUM Research Centre. He is a Clinical Associate Professor at Université de Montréal and is also affiliated with Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. He is the director of the Addiction Psychiatry Unit at the CHUM, a specialized program for patients with addiction, mental health disorders and physical comorbidities. His research focuses on developing new interventions for addiction and comorbid conditions. He is particularly interested in cannabinoids, both for their deleterious effects and their therapeutic properties. He holds several research grants from funding agencies and is the principal investigator for various clinical trials in the addiction field. He is also involved in several research networks around themes affecting vulnerable populations such as substance misuse, HIV, hepatitis C and suicide. 

Yan Kestens

Associate Professor at the Ecole de Sante Publique de l’Université de Montréal Researcher at the Research Center of the Montreal University Hospital, Canada

Yan Kestens is an Associate Professor at the Ecole de Sante Publique de l’Université de Montréal and a researcher at the Research Center of the Montreal University Hospital. He holds a Canadian Institutes of Health Research Applied Public Health Chair in Urban Interventions and Population Health. His program of research is exploring how urban change impacts health profiles and health inequities.  Through methodological innovations that improve our capacity to assess urban interventions as well as people’s interactions with urban spaces, the Chair contributes to understand how ‘environments get under the skin’, and works in collaboration with local and regional decision makers to generate relevant evidence helping design healthier and more equitable cities.

Alexandra King

Internal Medicine Specialist, Lu’ma Medical Centre, Canada

Alexandra King, MD, FRCPC, is a member of the Nipissing First Nation (Ontario). She is an Internal Medicine Specialist with a focus on HIV/AIDS, hepatitis C (HCV) and HIV/HCV co-infections. She works at the Lu’ma Medical Centre, an Indigenous health and wellness centre providing excellence in wholistic care using both Indigenous and Western healing approaches. As a First Nation researcher, Alexandra is a Principal Investigator on various CIHR research grants related to Indigenous people and HIV, HCV and co-infections. Other research interests include Indigenous wellness; Indigenous research ethics; peer-based navigation, support and research; landbased cultural healing and wellness retreats; and land-based research. She works in communitybased research and intervention research grounded in Indigenous epistemology, culture and wellness. She serves on many local and national initiatives, including the CanHepC: the Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development, and the CIHR Canadian HIV Trials Network (CTN) Working Group for Health for People Who Use Drugs (co-lead), and the CIHR HIV/AIDS Research Advisory Committee (CHARAC).

Malcolm King

Health researcher, Simon Fraser University, Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, Canada

Dr. Malcolm King, a member of the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation, is a health researcher at Simon Fraser University, joining the Faculty of Health Sciences in September 2012. Over a long career in pulmonary research, Malcolm has developed new approaches to treat mucus clearance dysfunction in chronic lung disease, and continues to work on addressing issues in airborne disease transmission.

From 2009 to 2016, he led the CIHR Institute of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health as its Scientific Director, spearheading the development of a national health research agenda aimed at improving wellness and achieving health equity for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples in Canada. His international Indigenous health interests include improving Indigenous health through workforce development and provision of culturally appropriate care, and developing Indigenous health indicators to monitor progress in programs aimed at achieving wellness and health equity. Dr. King was honoured with a National Aboriginal Achievement Award in 1999, and in 2016 was named a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.

Michael J. Klag, Dean, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Michael J. Klag

Former Dean, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA

A world renowned kidney disease epidemiologist, his scientific contributions have aided in the prevention and epidemiology of kidney disease, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. He led pioneering studies in kidney disease epidemiology, including the first study to assess the incidence of end-stage renal disease and to identify blood pressure as a risk factor for the development of kidney failure.

Gary Kobinger

Director of the Research Centre on Infectious Diseases, Faculty of Medicine at Université Laval, Canada

Gary Kobinger is a professor in the Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases and the Director of the Research Centre on Infectious Diseases, Faculty of Medicine at Université Laval. He is also an adjunct professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and an associate professor in the Department of Medical Microbiology at the University of Manitoba. His work focuses on developing and testing new vaccine platforms and immune treatments against emerging and re-emerging viruses of high consequences to public health.

Between 2013-2016, 60 minutes, National Geographic, BBC Horizon, NOVA, France 2, PBS and others featured the leading work on successful treatment of Ebola infection that was developed by Gary and his team. In July 2016, Gary Kobinger initiated a new chapter of his career as the Director of the Centre de Recherche en Infectiologie de l’Université Laval.

Chi-Wan Lai

Taiwan Medical Accreditation Council, Taiwan

Chi-Wan Lai, M.D. graduated from the National Taiwan University (NTU) College of Medicine (1969). He received residency training in the Department of Neurology & Psychiatry in NTU Hospital (1970-1974), and then residency and fellowship in the Department of Neurology University of Minnesota (1975-1979). He was the Professor of Neurology at the University of Kansas when he returned to Taiwan in 1998. Since then, he had been the dean of Tzu-Chi University College of Medicine (1998-2001), Executive Secretary and then Chairman of the Medical Education Council, Ministry of Education of Taiwan (2002-2012). Since Taiwan Medical Accreditation Council (TMAC) was established in 2000, he had been a council member, and became CEO (2006-2012), and then Chairman (2012-2015) until he retired from TMAC in 2015. 

Marie-France Langlet

Patient partnership with the CHUSJ, Canada

In 2004, Marie-France Langlet's nine-year-old son, Lucas DiTecco, was diagnosed with acute nonlymphocytic leukemia at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Ste-Justine (CHUSJ), where he would go through several chemotherapy treatments. Unfortunately, chemotherapy would not be sufficient to keep him in remission. He would then receive a bone marrow transplant in 2005. From the beginning and throughout the hospitalization and follow-up process, Marie-France was profoundly involved in the treatment, in close partnership with the healthcare personnel. From the beginning, she also felt the need to help other parents who shared her struggles as they fought for their child's return to health and happiness.

Since her son's complete recovery in 2013, Mrs. Langlet has been an active participant in numerous initiatives concerning patient partnership at the CHUSJ, particularly within the oncology department. She has also joined the Comité des usagers du CHUSJ since 2014. Finally, along with the Direction collaboration et partenariat patient (DCPP) and the Université de Montréal, she has been involved in educational projects on healthcare partnership that target both the general population and the community of healthcare professionals. Her son's exceptional courage and determination have been her greatest source of inspiration. Over the years, she has attempted to celebrate him through her involvement, passing it forward and lending her support to those who have dedicated their lives to caring for our children. Mrs. Langlet has been blessed with a creative spirit, a gift for organization, the will to act, and an extensive management experience in the great enterprise that inspires her to devote her strength and her conviction to her cause.

Paul Lewis

Dean Faculty of Environmental Design and professor of urban planning, Université de Montréal, Canada

Paul Lewis is a full professor of urban planning at the Université de Montréal, where he lectures about transportation and health. In 2014, he became the Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Design, which brings together three schools: the school of architecture, the school of design, and the school of urban planning and landscape architecture. Before joining the Université de Montréal, he worked as an urban planner for the Hull and Gatineau municipalities, as well as the Ministry of Municipal Affairs in Quebec, at the head of Land Use Planning. He has also worked at the Council of Universities as a researcher. His main fields of interest include urban planning, transportation planning and human mobility. Among other subjects, he has studied the evolution of retail and the development of traditional commercial districts. He has also researched transit-oriented development and its impact on human mobility. More recently, he has studied the mobility of primary school students in the Montreal and Trois-Rivières regions, the development of intermodal transport hubs, and parking policies.

Michael T. Lynskey

Professor of Addictions at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King’s College London, United Kingdom

Michael T. Lynskey. Ph.D. is a Professor of Addictions at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King’s College London. He completed his training in New Zealand, working on the Christchurch Health and Development, a longitudinal study of 1265 children, and has held academic appointments at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, University of New South Wales and in the Dept. of Psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, Missouri. Michael has published extensively in the field of longitudinal studies and developmental psychopathology, with a particular emphasis on issues relating to cannabis use and cannabis use disorders, including the epidemiology and etiology of cannabis use and dependence; the assessment of cannabis use disorders, the comorbidity between cannabis use and mental health, and the genetics of cannabis dependence

Alex Mackenzie

Pediatrician at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), Ottawa, Canada

Alex MacKenzie, an attending pediatrician at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) in Ottawa Canada has served as the CEO and Science Director of the CHEO Research Institute as well as Vice President of Research for both CHEO and Genome Canada in addition to being founding scientist of the AeGera biotech company.  Dr. MacKenzie’s laboratory has conducted translational research on the rare pediatric disorder spinal muscular atrophy over the past 25 years; in recent years has broadened its focus with its involvement in the enhance Care for Rare project to search for therapies for a larger number of rare diseases. He is also looking at means of identifying and possibly presenting fetal alcohol syndrome disorders. 

Ahmed Maherzi

Head of Pediatrics and Neonatology at the Mongi Slim University Hospital, La Marsa, Tunisia

Head of Pediatrics and Neonatology at the Mongi Slim University Hospital, La Marsa, Tunisia, Dr. Ahmed Maherzi is a member of the mother-child network of French-speaking countries . In terms of professional affiliations, he has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Francophone Pediatric Hepatology, Gastroenterology and Nutrition Group, Secretary General of the Tunisian Society of Pediatrics, and a member of the Executive Committee of the Panarab Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition. He’s member of the permanent office of the International Conference of Francophone Deans and member of the scientific council of the University Agency of Francophony. With regard to his academic career, he has been Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of Tunis since 2011. His interest in social accountability led him to become Co-Chair of the International Francophone action research project on the social accountability of medical schools. He received the AFMC-Charles Boelen International social accountability award in 2016. Organizer of The World Summit of Social Accountability, 8-12 April 2017, Hammamet (Tunisia).

Alain Marchand

Director of the Research Team on Work and Mental Health (ERTSM), Université de Montréal, Canada

Alain Marchand is full professor in the School of Industrial Relations at the University of Montreal, Canada, and a research associate at the Public Health Research Institute, University of Montreal (IRSPUM).  He is the Director of the Research Team on Work and Mental Health (ERTSM), and he is in charge of the Social Determinants of Health research area at IRSPUM. Supported by grants from CIHR, SSHRC and FRQS, his research interests focused on the understanding and prevention of the role of occupation and pathogenic work organizations on the stress response, the occurrence of mental health problems, alcohol abuse, and the taking of psychotropic drugs. 


University of Montreal

University of Montreal and its two affiliated schools, École Polytechnique (engineering) and HEC Montréal (business) are amongst the world's top 100 universities, according to international rankings. Founded in 1878, the campus today has over 66,000 students and 2,600 professors, making University of Montreal the second largest university in Canada. Its students are drawn to the university by its deep roots in cosmopolitan Montreal and in consideration of its tenacious dedication to its international mission.

The Faculty of Medicine of the Université de Montréal has a threefold mission: the teaching, research, and improvement of healthcare in the fundamental sciences, clinical sciences, and health sciences sectors. Boasting  sixteen departments and two schools, it trains one third of doctors in Quebec, as well as a significant number of the health professionals in the province.

With its widespread hospital network, numerous affiliated institutes and the important responsibilities it has been given by the government of Quebec, the Faculty of Medicine of the Université de Montréal plays a prominent role in Canadian society.

The School of Public Health of the University of Montreal (ESPUM) is the only institution of its kind in Quebec and a leader in Canada and in the francophone world. It strives to be a locus of excellence and critical reflection in the teaching, research and promotion of knowledge pertaining to the public health fields. Fuelled by scientific innovation and excellence, the ESPUM offers widely recognized high-level graduate study programs.

Montreal Clinical Research Institute

Founded in 1967, the Montreal Clinical Research Institute (IRCM) is a non-profit organization that conducts fundamental and clinical biomedical research in addition to training high-level young scientists. With its cutting-edge technology facilities, the institute brings together 33 research teams, which work in cancer, immunology, neuroscience, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, systems biology and medicinal chemistry. The IRCM also operates a research clinic specialized in hypertension, cholesterol, diabetes and cystic fibrosis, as well as a research centre on rare and genetic diseases in adults. The IRCM is affiliated with the University of Montreal and associated with McGill University. Its clinic is affiliated with the Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM). The IRCM is supported by the Ministère de l’Économie, de la Science et de l’Innovation (Quebec ministry of Economy, Science and Innovation).

Plan your stay

Montreal: a city whose passion, joie de vivre and rich cultural heritage are legendary

Marked by its past, proud of its bicultural heritage, and further enriched by immigration, Montréal turns resolutely toward the future.

Today, Montréal is home to some 3.4 million inhabitants who represent no fewer than 80 different ethnic groups. Montréal lives up to its reputation as an international city.

The second-largest French-speaking city in the world, Montréal hosted one of the most impressive world fairs of the century in 1967 as well as the 1976 Summer Olympic Games. The city donned its finest to welcome visitors and has preserved and even improved several of the attractions that it built for the two occasions. Because Montréal always loves to celebrate, it has naturally become a city of dazzling international festivals (jazz, film, comedy, fireworks, fine dining, Winter sports and so forth). The rhythm of events intensifies and visitors and Montrealers alike join in the dance. More than a few succumb to the city’s mixture of European and North American charm that both surprises and enchants.

Dynamic and modern, but respectful of its architectural heritage, Montréal successfully blends the old with the new. A trip through the past in Old Montréal and the Old Port lets you witness the origins and the growth of the colony. Museums and historical sites alternate with irresistible bistros in an atmosphere of yesteryear.

While venerating its past, Montréal also looks to the future, having earned a reputation as a world leader in leading-edge technologies such as aeronautics, information technologies and biotechnologies. Montréal is also an innovator, whether in the field of medical technology and equipment, the arts (for example, the Cirque du Soleil, modern dance and experimental theatre), information technology (software and multimedia productions) or in urban development (a unique underground city).

For those who wish to take a closer reading of Montréal’s pulse, what could be better than a stopover in some of the city’s most picturesque districts, such as the Jean-Talon Market in Little Italy, or along Saint-Denis Street in the Plateau Mont-Royal. In neighbourhood markets, boutiques, restaurants and cafés radiates the soul of Montréal, and the vitality and joie de vivre of its inhabitants.

Happy birthday Montreal

On the occasion of Montréal’s 375th anniversary celebrations, let’s celebrate Montréal’s vivacity. If the downtown core and historic Old Montréal shine year-round with international festivals and events, summer 2017 will certainly be even more special. It’s time to celebrate Montréal’s roots: its history and heritage, not to mention its identity and diversity, in high style! Festivals, tastings, church bell concerts and neighourhood tours... The list is long!

Do not hesitate to take part in Montreal's 375th anniversary

Fun facts

  • John Lennon and Yoko Ono held their legendary Bed-In in Montréal at the Fairmont the Queen Elizabeth hotel from May 26 to June 2, 1969.
  • A popular local snack is “poutine” (French fries with cheese curds topped with gravy) – absolutely delicious!
  • Our “underground city” has over 30 km (18 miles) of pedestrian walkways, indoor areas and tunnels linking 8 subway stations, 5 train stations and termini, 63 buildings, 9 major hotels, 2,000 businesses, 1,700 boutiques, 37 cinemas, theatres and exhibition halls, 10 university buildings and 43 indoor parking areas.
  • The legal drinking age in Montréal is 18. Bars and restaurants can serve beer and alcohol from 11 a.m. to 3 in the morning.
  • What others call “pastrami”, we call “smoked meat”. (By the way, our smoked meat sandwiches are to die for!)
  • An entrée here is actually an appetizer.
  • Montréal is among the 10 best cities in the world for outdoor dining, according to American travel guide publisher, Frommers.
  • In total, 80 languages are spoken in the Montréal region, including French, English, Italian, Spanish, Arabic, Greek, Chinese, German, Portuguese, Creole and Vietnamese.
  • Montréal ranks second to Halifax for the number of Titanic victims buried in its cemeteries (12 in all).
  • Eye contact in Montréal differs from that in other major cities. Whereas discretion is the order of the day elsewhere, Montréalers do not shy away from making eye contact with strangers.
  • With the highest number of tango dancers and dance halls on the continent, Montréal is the tango capital of North America.
  • Greeting a French-speaking person from Montréal can be confusing for visitors. The customary way to greet friends in Montréal is to kiss them on both cheeks, starting with the right, whereas Canadians in other provinces tend to keep their distance and simply shake hands.


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