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Board of Directors

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Michael Decter, Board Chair

Michael B. Decter is a Harvard trained economist with over two decades of experience as a senior manager. He is a leading Canadian expert on health systems, with a wealth of international experience. As a senior manager in the public sector, Michael served as Deputy Minister of Health for Ontario with responsibility for the management of the $18 billion Ontario health system serving 11 million residents of the province. He also served as Cabinet Secretary in the Government of Manitoba.

As Senior Research Scholar at the Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto, Michael Decter authored the book: Healing Medicare: Managing Health System Change – The Canadian Way, published in 1994. His second health book, Four Strong Winds – Understanding the Growing Challenges to Health Care, was published in June, 2000. His third book Navigating Canada's Health Care, co-authored with Francesca Grosso, published in 2006.

Michael Decter remains active as a public speaker and writer on issues of health reform. He serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of the investment management firm, LDIC Inc.

Michael was the Founding Chair of the Health Council of Canada and former Chair of the Saint Elizabeth Health Care. He also served as the Chair of the Canadian Institute for Health Information, the Ontario Cancer Quality Council and Wait Times Data Certification Council of Ontario.  He is a Board member of Border Crossings, The Auto Sector Health Care Trust, Medavie Blue Cross and Chair of The Walrus Foundation.

In 2004, Michael was awarded The Order of Canada, and on March 19, 2013 Michael was named Chancellor of Brandon University.

Crystal Chin

Crystal Chin was born in Taiwan where  she was diagnosed with a neuromotor condition at eight months of age. She immigrated to Canada in her late childhood where she lived in the Greater Toronto Area and received treatment and monitoring at the Hospital for Sick Children as well as Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation hospital. Through her many interactions with academic and medical sectors, she became engaged in her community, particularly around health and education issues. She serves in many capacities and for many organizations.

At Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation hospital, she previously held the role of co-chair, and public relations on the Youth Advisory Council. She is also a member of the Patient Family Advisory Council and a Foundation Ambassador. Furthermore, Ms. Chin is a member of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Centers, a Board member of the Richmond Hill Mobility Access Foundation, and a former Board member of Marsha Forest Centre. She is also an active member on the Integrated Complex Care Advisory Committee with The Provincial Council for Maternal and Child Health,  a member of CPNET Advisory Committee with the Ontario Brian Institute, and a panel member  of PANORAMA - province wide citizens advisory panel that informs and enriches the work of The Change Foundation, Ontario's independent health policy think tank.

Neil Stuart

Neil Stuart served for many years as a partner and practice leader in the health care consulting practice of Price Waterhouse, PricewaterhouseCoopers and then IBM. In 2009, he retired from IBM.

He taught for several years in the University of Ottawa's Masters of Health Administration program and currently has an adjunct appointment at the University of Toronto in its Institute of Health Policy Management and Evaluation.

In addition to his role on the board of Patients Canada, Neil is on the board of VON Canada (past chair) and he is vice chair of the Ontario Minister of Health’s Task Force on Environmental Health. He recently served on the boards of Cancer Care Ontario (board chair), The Change Foundation, the Ontario Hospital Association and Toronto East General Hospital (board chair).

Neil received his PhD in health policy from Brandeis University where he was a fellow in the University's Health Policy Center.

Francesca Grosso

Francesca is a principal at the health strategy firm Grosso McCarthy Inc.  Francesca has been immersed in health care strategy, policy and communications for over 15 years. She has served as Director of Policy to the Ontario Minister of Health and Long Term Care and was Vice President of Health Care at Environics Research Group. Francesca helped establish the Health Council of Canada and was a transition team member establishing the new federal agencies, the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer and the Mental Health Commission.

She co-authored Navigating Canada’s Health Care which is now in its second print and has completed the History of Sunnybrook which was published by Dundurn Press in 2014.

Andrew Ignatieff

Andrew Ignatieff has worked for thirty five years in international development cooperation in Africa, Latin America, and Asia. He has been involved in design and implementation of primary health care initiatives, basic education, adult literacy, skills training and economic development projects. His career has given him extensive experience in organizational development, government relations, and communications.

He has a life time commitment to raising awareness about Alzheimer Disease, based on his personal experience as a caregiver to members of his family. His personal and professional experiences have made him committed to giving a voice to those who traditionally not listened to as well as ensuring that the rights of people are ensured in the delivery of social services and community programs.

Dianne Carmichael

Dianne has over 25 years of extensive executive management experience spanning four industries; however when her father was diagnosed with cancer in 2004 her career and personal focus took a major shift towards health care. Her focus is now on mobilizing organizations and governments to rethink health care and lead to sustainable and consumer-centred transformation.

As the former President of Best Doctors, she is credited with creating a strong consumer movement and market for remote second opinion and navigation services.

Currently, Dianne is Founder & President of UHN Solutions at University Health Network (Toronto General Hospital, Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto Rehab Hospital and Princess Margaret Hospital) and CEO of Carmichael Worldwide Inc. These roles allow her to combine her passion for patient advocacy and empowerment with her belief that unique funding models can be created to support the Universal Health Care eco-system - ultimately enhancing the quality of care for all Canadians.

Dianne is a Board Member at Holland-Bloorview Kid's Rehab Hospital, sits on the Board of Patients Canada and is Chair of the Women's Brain Health Initiative. She sits on the Advisory Boards of CAPCH (Canadian Association of People-Centred Health), ARC (academic e-health research collaborative), York University's Faculty Heath and the Garrison Health Group, an incubator for mobile technologies to support health care.

In 2009 Dianne was recognized as one of the Top 20 Business Women in Canada, nominated for Entrepreneur of the Year and profiled as one of the Top Women to Watch in 2012.

Kate McGarrigle, our Founding Patron

Kate’s experience during her battle with cancer inspired her support of Patients Canada. She was adamant that we champion excellent care and, as such, was a supporter of our first project, the Patients' Choice Awards.

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