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Scientific Advisory Board

To ensure the development and delivery of effective, evidence-based health assessments and interventions, INTERxVENT Canada works with leading Canadian and international experts in areas including disease management, workplace health and preventive medicine. These experts include:

Dr. Alice Y.Y. Cheng, MD, FRCPC

Dr. Cheng is a member of the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at Trillium Health Partners (Credit Valley Hospital) in Mississauga and St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto and is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto. She completed medical school, internal medicine and Endocrinology training at the University of Toronto and has completed the Master Teacher Program offered through the Department of Medicine. She has served on the Expert Committee for the 2003 Canadian Diabetes Association clinical practice guidelines and the Steering and Expert Committees for the 2008 revision, along with the Dissemination & Implementation committee. She is serving as Chair for the 2013 CDA clinical practice guidelines. In addition to guidelines development, she is actively involved in continuing education and has received a Certificate of Recognition from the Ontario College of Family Physicians for her contributions to diabetes care and family medicine education.

Dr. David Fell, MD, FRCPC, FACC

Dr. David Fell is the Physician Leader of the Regional Cardiac Care Program at Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket, Ontario. He has been in a leadership role overseeing the development of this advanced cardiac service centre for 10 years.

Dr. Fell is also Co-Chair of the York/Simcoe/Muskoka/Dufferin Cardiac System Planning Team and has served on the board of directors of the Cardiac Care Network of Ontario for four years. In addition, he works as a full-time invasive cardiologist out of Southlake Regional Health Centre.

Prior to joining Southlake in 1999, Dr. Fell worked as a cardiologist at the Scarborough Grace and Toronto Western Hospitals for 12 years and was Chief of Staff at Scarborough Grace from 1998 to 1999.

Dr. Michael Gagnon, MD

A community family physician in Bolton, Ontario, Dr. Gagnon serves as INTERxVENT Canada’s Medical Director. He currently works with the Bolton Family Health Group as a family practitioner in the outpatient setting. From 2004 to 2007, Dr. Gagnon was also a Family Medicine Resident at Abington Memorial Hospital.

Dr. David Satok, BSc, MD, CCFP, FCFP, CCTI

Dr. Satok has been the Corporate Medical Director of Rogers Communications Inc. since April 2008. He is also the Director of Insurance Medical Services at Gamma Dynacare Medical Laboratories. Prior to 2008, Dr. Satok held the position of Chief Medical Officer at Apotex Research Inc. (Canada’s largest pharmaceutical company). As an Associate Physician at the University of Toronto Department of Family and Community Medicine, Dr. Satok teaches medical students in his office. He also continues working in the area of Family Medicine, seeing patients on a daily basis.

Dr. Satok graduated from the University of Toronto Medical School in 1991 and completed a residency in Family Medicine in 1993. He received his fellowship in 2003. Dr. Satok has privileges at multiple hospitals in Toronto and is involved in committees at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario and Toronto Public Health.

Dr. Alain Sotto, Hon. B.Sc., M.D., CCFP (E.M.), F.C.B.O.M

Alain has been the Chief Physician at OPG -Wellness Division, since 2001 and TTC Occupational Medical Consultant, since 2006. He was the Medical Director at Boeing Toronto for 17 years until it closed in 2005 and the Medical Director at Pratt and Whitney in Toronto for the 7 years. He has also worked as Medical Director for many other large employers in Toronto like Bombardier, McDonnell-Douglas Canada, etc. Alain served as Regional Medical Officer for the Great Lakes region, at CN Railways for 5 years until Dec. 2005. He has been an occupational medical consultant to Stelco, and several other companies.
He is also a certified specialist in Emergency and Family Medicine and is on Staff in Family Medicine at William Osler Hospital in Brampton, where he worked in the Emergency Dept. for 19 years. He also has an active part-time Family-Practice in Brampton for the last 24 years.
Alain was also appointed as an examiner for the Canadian Board of Occupational Medicine in October 2009.
Most recently he was appointed by an Order in Council in Ontario Parliament as Investigative Coroner for York Region, Sept. 2008 doing death scene investigations.

Alain was also invited to speak in Paris by the French Civil Defence force on pandemic planning with antiviral programs in March 2009.


In 2012, Dr. Sotto was the lead on OPG’s Corporate Health and Wellness Strategy where OPG was named with the top 3 finalists for best employer in the Workplace Health and Benefit’s Awards. This strategy illustrated OPG’s ROI on their 5 chronic disease health and wellness initiatives, especially in the area of mental health, with savings of $ 865,000 in sick leave costs.

Alain serves on numerous medical advisory boards including the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care –Scientific Advisory Council, Canadian Board of Occupational Medicine executive, Benefits Canada, and Morneau Shepell Mental Health Advisory Board.

He has been a guest speaker at the World Conference on Disaster Management, Conference Board of Canada, IAPA, IEEE, Ontario Occupational Health Nurses Association, OTIP, Occupational and Environmental Medical Association of Canada (OEMAC), International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP), and Certified Employee Benefit Professional (CEBS), many other medical conferences. In November 2012, he was the keynote speaker at the Annual IFEBP Conference speaking to 1330 attendees on aging and wellness.
Alain has also appeared on Rogers –TV and has published many workplace health and wellness articles in various magazines, including Benefit’s Canada, ROI of One Life: Cancer etc..

Alain’s degrees include Hon. BSc, MD, CCFP (EM), FCBOM (Fellow of the Canadian Board of Occupational Medicine) and he is a graduate of U of T Medical School in 1987. Alain also completed an Executive leadership program at the Rotman School of Business.

Alain was also the lead consultant to OPG on a cross-functional team during the SARS epidemic, for which OPG was used as “model employer” by the Rotman School of Business. Alain was also a founding member of the OPG-Pandemic Steering Committee.
Alain’s primary area of interest is “saving lives at the workplace one life at a time” with integrated health strategies at work for preventing or delaying the onset of chronic diseases.

Dr. Sheldon Tobe, MD, FRCPC

Since 1993, Dr. Tobe has combined his position as staff nephrologist at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre with that of assistant professor of medicine at U of T.

A graduate in medicine from the University of Calgary, Dr. Tobe served his internship and residencies in internal medicine at the University of Toronto teaching hospitals from 1985 to 1988. This was closely followed by a one-year term as resident in nephrology at the Toronto Hospital where, in 1993, he completed a three-year MRC research fellowship in nephrology.

Dr. Tobe served as principal investigator in a comprehensive research project devoted to bicarbonate dialysis. In addition to being awarded the 1996 Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Department of Medicine Young Clinician-Teacher Award, in 1999 he was appointed Sunnybrook’s acting division director in the division of nephrology, becoming the director in January 2000.

A member of various professional and volunteer organizations including medical director for the Kidney Foundation of Canada’s Central Ontario Branch board of directors, Dr. Tobe also sits on numerous committees, including the Toronto Region Dialysis Committee, the Canadian Hypertension Society Clinical Practice Guideline Committee (renal and renal-vascular subgroup) and the executive of the Ontario Association of Nephrologists.

With an overriding interest in community-based, patient-focused research, Dr. Tobe concentrates his investigation in two distinct areas. The first is prevention of ESRD in populations at risk (i.e., hypertension and diabetes), and the second is prevention of morbidity and mortality in dialysis.

Dr. Thomas E. Ungar, MD, M.Ed, CCFP, FCFP, FRCPC, DABPN

Dr. Ungar is an award winning educator and one of Canada’s leading voices of mental health care. He is a busy clinician, Chief of Psychiatry & Medical Director Mental Health Program, as well as Chief of Staff at North York General Hospital, and Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. His background includes certification and clinical experience as both a family physician and psychiatrist, with subspecialty certification in psychosomatic medicine. With knowledge translation expertise and innovation and design skills he is a passionate thought leader, and sought after adviser on national continuing education programs in mental health and models of collaborative shared care. He is the 2009 recipient of the Paul Patterson Award, a national award for educational innovation by the Canadian Psychiatric Association, and invited Distinguished Member Plenary Lecturer for 2012.

He collaborates on numerous projects including the Canadian Psychiatric Association task force on Clinical Practice Guidelines, The Anxiety Review Panel for the Ontario Guidelines for the Management of Anxiety Disorders in Primary Care, The Canadian Collaborative Mental Health Initiative, The Enhance Ontario project on inter-organizational Collaboration, and The Canadian Review Panel for the World Health Organization Management of Mental Disorders in Primary Care.

He has recently co-developed a groundbreaking national online anti-stigma learning module “Combating Stigma for Physicians and other Health Professionals” for the Mood Disorder Society of Canada, Mental Health Commission of Canada, Canadian Medical Association and partners (www.cma.ca). He is the founder and continues to develop the Mental Health Minute, a consumer friendly evidence based public education and anti-stigma multimedia social campaign consisting of brief audio and video minutes, social media, podcasts, consumer friendly treatment guidelines, at www.mentahealthminute.com.

Filomena Vernace-Inserra, BASc, RD

Filomena Vernace-Inserra is a Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Consultant in York & Peel Regions. She has operated her private practice for the past 15 years and brings with her 20 years of client interaction experience from in-patient and out-patient hospital settings and private practice. Filomena provides group nutrition education programs across the greater Toronto area to adults, children, and seniors on a variety of nutrition topics including weight management & sports nutrition. She also hosts cooking classes, grocery store tours on label reading, and develops Ministry approved menus for day care centres and catering companies for school lunches in her community.

Filomena has volunteered extensively in her community including the development of the Healthy School Committee at an elementary school to help promote the message of healthy eating and healthy living to over 800 students. She willingly accepts university and college nutrition students and mentors them.

Filomena is graduate of the Nutritional Sciences program at Ryerson University (1993) and the Toronto General Hospital Internship Program (1994). She has published two research articles in scientific journals that investigated adherence factors to calcium recommendations in women attending the Multidisciplinary Osteoporosis Program at Women’s College Hospital. She has worked in the clinical areas of Renal, Cardiology, Women’s Health, Breast Cancer, and Osteoporosis. She was recently awarded the York Region “Healthy and HOT (Helping Others Too) award by a group of organizations including Heart and Stroke Foundation & York Region Media Group for her outstanding service to clients and her community.

Filomena is a member in good standing with the College of Dietitians of Ontario and Dietitians of Canada professional groups including the Diabetes, Obesity, and Cardiovascular Network, Sports Nutrition Network, and the Consulting Dietitians of Ontario Network.