Dr. Ron Remick
Dr. Remick trained at Johns Hopkins University and George Washington Medical School before immigrating to Canada in 1974 where he completed his specialty training in psychiatry (1978). In 1986, he became the Assistant Head, Department of Psychiatry, University of British Columbia where he founded the UBC Mood Disorders Clinic that continues to enjoy an international reputation for research on understanding and treating mood disorders.
Dr. Remick has published over 200 articles, letters and book chapters in a variety of scientific journals.
In 2008 he became the Medical Director of the Psychiatric Clinics here at the Mood Disorders Association of BC, where he pioneered the introduction of patient-focused group medical visits.
He strongly believes that educated patients – “informed consumers” – are most likely to receive the best care; it is this philosophy that drives his approach to patient care.
In 2017 he also became the Medical Director of Lookout Housing and Health Society – British Columbia’s largest not for profit social housing organization with a goal of providing innovative mental health services for the 3000+ residents of Lookout’s shelters, transition homes and long term housing facilities.
Click here to meet Dr. Remick
To hear Dr. Remick speak about Fitness as Medicine, click here.
Dr. Philip Brost
Dr. Brost completed Medical School at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, as well as Psychiatry Residency at the University of British Columbia. He is now a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, having completed his specialty training in 2014. During residency, Dr. Brost gained extensive experience in Mood Disorders, having trained at several hospitals and community sites within Vancouver Coastal Health, PHSA, as well as Providence Health Care. He is very pleased to be a part of the MDA team.
Dr. Jennifer Chalmers
Dr. Jennifer H. Chalmers is a registered psychologist in the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories. Jennifer did her Doctoral studies and research in Clinical Psychology (Chicago), and studied with the well-respected Dr. Harold Mosak, Dr. O. Christensen, Bob Powers, and Edna Nash of Vancouver. Dr. Chalmers completed graduate training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (Dr. A. Freeman), and Substance Abuse Counselling and Harm Reduction. Her residency training was done at the McGill University Health Centre (MGH), with additional training in Geriatric Mental Health with the Department of Psychiatry, and clinical neuropsychology at the MNI (2005).
Jennifer’s work has taken her from coast to coast to coast including living in the Arctic. Jennifer’s diverse educational and lived experiences (bilingual/mixed ancestry from Quebec, Clinical Dietitian/Diabetes Educator, Psychology) provided the basis and interest to develop a practice in program implementation and evaluation in partnership with communities and stakeholders (non-profits, governments). Her practice has included more than 60 projects in program development and evaluation with mental health, early intervention, harm reduction, domestic violence, intergenerational physical and sexual abuse, and large-scale process/outcome evaluations.
At MDABC, Dr. Chalmers focuses on program design & evaluation, with clinical practice in counselling and wellness. She brings innovation and an ecological view to her projects, and operates from a relational and cultural perspective that encourage people to share their stories and lived experiences. Jennifer also contributes to teaching, addressing systemic discrimination through advocacy with Indigenous communities, and trauma-focused psychotherapy practice with EMDR and Narrative Therapy.
Dr. Carmen Chornell
Dr Carmen Chornell is a family doctor who is currently living and working in Squamish. She completed medical school at University of Alberta and Family Medicine residency through UBC’s program in Nanaimo. She has a passion for preventative and sports medicine, mental health, and aims to treat patients with a holistic approach to wellbeing. She is also a yoga and meditation instructor and loves to combine the benefits and knowledge of both Western Medicine and Eastern Traditions. Together they can be a powerful resource for self-awareness, self-compassion, healing, and health. She is now leading the 8-week yoga program called JOY-TH for depression.
Dr. Sheehan Chowdhury
Dr. Sheehan Chowdhury completed his medical degree at the University of Calgary in 2013 and then completed his residency in Psychiatry at the University of British Columbia in 2018. He then completed a fellowship in Geriatric Psychiatry at the University of Alberta in 2019 before joining us at MDA. He works at Richmond Hospital helping to run the acute care of the elderly unit, the consultation liaison team, and the older adult mental health team. He also sees patients at the Access and Assessment Centre. Dr.Chowdhury has a strong interest and expertise in non-invasive neurostimulation. He helps provide electroconvulsive therapy at Richmond Hospital and is now the Lead Psychiatrist for MDA’s repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation program.
Dr. Claire Fantus
Dr. Fantus completed her psychiatry residency at the University of Toronto in 2015. She is a trainee at the Toronto Institute of Psychoanalysis in the Advanced Training Program (ATPPP) and has also completed training in Interpersonal Psychotherapy. Dr. Fantus has a special interest in narrative medicine, having completed a rotation with Dr. Rita Charon at Columbia University during her medical training. Dr. Fantus practices at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital and is an instructor through UBC’s Southern Medical Program for medical students and residents. She enjoys creative writing in her free time, having published most recently with the Black Bear Review through Selkirk College. She is thrilled to be joining the team at MDABC!
Dr. Kayhan Ghatavi
Dr. Ghatavi completed his psychiatry training at the University of Toronto (U of T) and Dalhousie University (1997–2002) after obtaining his Medical Degree at U of T. He worked as a consultation-liaison, general adult and collaborative care psychiatrist at Dalhousie University (2002-2007), continuing in these roles (+ geriatric psychiatry) at the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC, 2007-2021). As Medical Director at PRHC, he led innovative program developments, where person-centered, trauma informed care, education, access and collaboration were prioritized, as reflected in the Talk Now Clinic – a multi-agency weekday/evening virtual “walk-in” clinic for all ages. Relocating to BC in 2021, it has been his privilege to support First Nations communities across Northwest BC as a psychiatrist with Northern Health. His approach is person-centered, informed by a biopsychosocial-spiritual ecological framework, collaboratively integrating pharmacotherapy with CBT, DBT, Good Psychiatric Management (GPM) and Indigenous Focusing Oriented Therapy (IFOT). As a member of Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE-BC) and the Climate Psychiatry Alliance, he advocates and educates about the mental health impacts of the climate crisis.
Dr. David Heilbrunn
Dr. Heilbrunn studied medicine at the University of Cape Town, South Africa and completed his postgraduate training in both psychiatry and psychoanalysis at the University of Toronto.
At the University Hospital of Western Ontario he developed and led the psychiatric outpatient and group therapy program. In 2000, he was recruited as the Medical Director of the psychiatric outpatient and group therapy program at Surrey Memorial Hospital. In addition to leading group medical visits for the Mood Disorders Association of BC, Dr. Heilbrunn is a member of the faculty at UBC and is a staff member at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver. He is currently President of the Western Branch of the Canadian Psychoanalytic Society and serves on the Ethics Committee of the Canadian Psychoanalytic Society.
Dr. Daniel McBain
Dr. McBain obtained his medical licence from McMaster University in 1998 after having worked as a broadcaster, writer, translator, and editor of bioscience books for the lay reader. He completed a residency in rural and remote Family Medicine through McMaster’s northern program and worked in a variety of locales before obtaining training and certification in Medical Psychotherapy. He has been providing individual psychotherapy virtually since 2010 and has designed virtual Group Medical Visits and brief virtual sessions for mental wellness. He is passionate about pragmatic, non-pharmaceutical treatments, and enjoys exploring creative, inspiring approaches to treating chronic depression and anxiety, winter depression, and psychiatric issues related to palliative and end-of-life care. Dr. McBain leads our MDABC programs such as Lessons in Happiness, Beat the Winter Bluesand Moves for Mind and Mood
Dr. Patricia Mills, MD, FRCPC
Dr. Patricia Mills is a Specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation now practicing Functional Medicine (a.k.a. root-cause medicine). Previously a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of British Columbia (UBC), a Principal Investigator at ICORD and a core member of the VCH Rehabilitation Research Program, she obtained her M.H.Sc in Health Care and Epidemiology from UBC, her M.D. from the University of Toronto, her medical specialty training at UBC, and certified in Functional Medicine through the Institute for Functional Medicine (U.S.A.). She is an internationally recognized published researcher, and enjoys spending her free time immersed in the beautiful nature of her hometown in Smithers, B.C.
Dr. Saby Ramirez
Dr. Saby Ramirez completed her medical degree at Rosario University in Colombia in 1994. She then worked as a family doctor until she immigrated to Canada in 2002. Dr. Ramirez worked as a clinical research associate at the BC Center for Excellence in HIV for 3 years before starting her psychiatry residency training at UBC in 2006. During her last year of training, she focused on psychotherapy, mainly Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT). She moved to Powell River BC in 2011 where she practiced as a general psychiatrist at Powell River General Hospital. Dr. Ramirez has experience treating a diverse population – from adolescents to seniors. She is comfortable assessing and treating patients with severe and complex mental illnesses. She utilizes a well-rounded approach – treating the whole person – through medication and psychotherapy. Dr. Ramirez has delivered DBT for 10 years and has seen how this therapy helps her patients gain the skills to increase the quality of their life and decrease their suffering. She is passionate about teaching and holds a position as Clinical Instructor with the UBC Department of Psychiatry. We are pleased to have Dr. Ramirez deliver DBT skills trainingat MDABC.
Dr. Katherine Ramsden
Dr. Katherine Ramsden completed her residency training at McMaster University in 2022 after receiving her medical degree from University College in Cork in Ireland. In her final year of residency, she held the position as Chief Resident. She has published on the topics of mood disorders and chronic pain.
In addition to working at MDABC, she is also completing her subspecialty training in Geriatric Psychiatry at the University of British Columbia.
She excited to work in a Clinic like MDA that offers such a diverse opportunities of treatments for patients.
Dr. Leslie Wicholas
Dr. Leslie Wicholas graduated from the University of Calgary medical school in 1998 and completed her specialty training in Psychiatry at UBC in 2003. She then practiced on the Provincial Child Inpatient Unit at BC Children’s Hospital until 2016, working intensively with children and families facing a wide range of psychiatric and medical challenges. In her role as Clinical Director, she introduced and piloted a new model of trauma-informed care, transforming the way psychiatric care is delivered to patients.
More recently, Dr. Wicholas’ interests have focused on the burgeoning field of Nutritional Psychiatry and the role of inflammation in both mood and pain disorders. She is currently training with the Institute of Functional Medicine, which utilizes a unique, mechanism-based approach to identifying and treating the root causes of chronic disease.
Dr. Wicholas has designed Food as Medicine, a group-based program for treating mood disorders and chronic pain with a specific focus on addressing the underlying inflammatory components of illness. She is currently offering this program at MDABC.
Dr. Kortney Witt
Dr. Kortney Witt graduated from the University of British Columbia medical school in 2007. She completed her specialty training in psychiatry at the University of British Columbia and became a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in 2014.
She practices at Royal Columbian Hospital, specializing in perinatal psychiatry, which focuses on assessing and treating a broad range of psychiatric disorders during pregnancy and the first year postpartum. She also enjoys teaching and is a clinical instructor with UBC.
Dr. Witt also has a strong interest in interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT), a short-term, evidence-based treatment that reduces symptoms of depression by working to address key interpersonal challenges. She is a certified IPT therapist with the International Society of Interpersonal Psychotherapy (ISIPT) and has been running IPT groups for depression for several years and we are pleased to have her join our team at MDA offering IPT Groups