In partnership with

Emerging Technologies
in Arrhythmia Care

Hosted by Brian Stever and Jeremie Saunders of Sickboy Podcast, in celebrating Heart Month, this February 4, 2020, we host our annual public forum at the TIFF Bell Lightbox in Toronto, Ontario.

Learn about the latest advances in arrhythmia research and care from virtual care for pacemakers and implantable cardiac devices to drone-delivered defibrillators, and how a patient’s voice, through technology, can be heard in healthcare.

Brought to you by the Cardiac Arrhythmia Network of Canada (CANet®), our event offers you the opportunity to meet other patients, caregivers, and physicians, to exchange knowledge about arrhythmia care in Canada.

With our prominent guest speakers and the addition of the CANet® Shift competition, our goal is to bring together over 500 people in what would be our largest public forum to date.

click here to register

CANet® Shift

$200,000 Heart Rhythm Innovation Competition

Our Public Forum evening will also include our inaugural CANet® Shift competition.

Canadian health technology startups will go head-to-head, showcasing their technology at the CANet® Shift – $200,000 Heart Rhythm Innovation Competition.

Three startups will be chosen as finalists to present their technology and ground-breaking solutions to a group of renowned researchers, industry leaders, venture capitalists, and a patient-filled audience.

The pitch winner will receive an astounding CANet-funded grant totaling $200,000!

click here to learn more


February 4, 2020


TIFF Bell Lightbox
Toronto, Ontario
view map 

Event Agenda

5:30 pm – Introductory

5:35 pm – Dr. Ratika Parkash

5:50 pm – Sue Robins

6:05 pm – Dr. Sheldon Cheskes

6:20 pm – Armchair Panel Discussion

7:00 pm – Audience Q&A

7:30 pm – Intermission

7:45 pm – CANet® Shift Competition


Brian Stever and Jeremie Saunders are two of the hosts of the wildly popular Sickboy Podcast.

Hilarious, ridiculously insightful and determined to break down the stigmas associated with illness and disease. Sickboy Podcast began because they recognized that when faced with difficult situations, illnesses and diseases, people tighten up, get awkward, and simply don’t know what to say. Taking the lead from Jeremie’s life long battle with Cystic Fibrosis, they help people understand that sometimes the best way to deal with illness, disease and life is simply to laugh. Through the therapy of laughter, we can begin to understand that whether sick or healthy, we’re all human, and we’re all dying, so let’s talk about it.

It started in a public library recording room, moved into their own recording studio, was funded by a hugely successful Kickstarter campaign and within weeks they were among the top rated podcasts in the country. Their talks are engaging, forward-thinking and hilarious. Let them inspire your audience and blow the conversation wide open today!


Dr. Ratika Parkash
CANet® Investigator, RPM-CIED

Delivering efficient remote virtual care for pacemaker and implantable cardiac devices

read bio

Dr. Parkash obtained her medical degree in 1996 from Dalhousie University. She completed her residency in internal medicine/cardiology in Ottawa from 1996-2002, followed by a fellowship in cardiac electrophysiology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital from 2002-2004. She obtained a Masters of Science in Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2004. She is a professor of medicine at Dalhousie University, from 2004 until the present.

She has two major areas of research: atrial fibrillation (AF) and cardiac implantable electronic devices (CIEDs). Currently, Dr. Parkash is involved in a number of clinical trial initiatives in atrial fibrillation focused on mechanisms of disease and management strategies. She continues to investigate the prevention of recurrent atrial fibrillation in patients with a high symptom burden to prevent future cardiovascular events and improve quality of life.

In addition, she investigates Cardiac Implantable Electronic devices in the areas of device recalls, management, outcomes, complications, virtual care strategies, as well as prevention of sudden death. Dr. Parkash is the past Chair of the Canadian Heart Rhythm Society Device Committee and has been the lead investigator in initiatives to improve outcomes in patients with cardiac implantable devices.

Dr. Parkash is the Associate Scientific Director of CANet®, dedicated to reducing sudden cardiac death, atrial fibrillation and syncope in Canada.

Sue Robins
Author, Bird’s Eye View

A patient’s view: Innovation in health care using technology

read bio

Author Sue Robins’ career began as a young hospital volunteer and student nurse before she embarked on a series of health administration roles. She was unexpectedly immersed in health care as a caregiver when her third child was born with Down syndrome. In 2017, Sue became a patient when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Sue’s recent work experience includes paid family leadership positions with the B.C. Children’s Hospital and the Stollery Children’s Hospital. She is also a senior partner with Bird Communications, a Canadian health communications company.

Sue’s writing has been widely published, including in The New York Times, The Globe and Mail, the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the Journal of Family Nursing, the Journal of Paediatric and Child Health and the Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences. She has spoken at many national and international health conferences about patient and family centred care.

Sue is the mom of three children – Isaac, Ella and Aaron. She lives with her husband and youngest son just outside of Vancouver, Canada on the unceded territory of the Traditional Coast Salish people.

After writing about health care for almost her entire life, Bird’s Eye View is Sue’ first book.

Dr. Sheldon Cheskes
CANet® Investigator, AED Drone Delivery

Providing cutting-edge technologies with potential to be transformative advances in cardiac arrest response

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Dr. Sheldon Cheskes is an Associate Professor with the Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto, and a scientist at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute at St. Michael’s Hospital and Affiliate Scientist at Sunnybrook Research Institute in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Dr. Cheskes is also a Regional Medical Director with the Sunnybrook Centre for Prehospital Medicine, and for 20 years served as the Divisional Chief of Emergency Medicine at Peel Memorial Hospital. He is one of the principal investigators for the Canadian Resuscitation Outcomes Consortium (CanROC) and is a recognized international authority in the area of CPR quality and out-of-hospital cardiac arrest resuscitation. Dr. Cheskes has published over 90 manuscripts in high impact journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, Circulation and Resuscitation that have changed resuscitation practice around the world.

He is currently leading the FIRST study, exploring the impact of remote ischemic conditioning to reduce reperfusion injury in ST- elevation myocardial infarction; and is also the principal investigator of the DOSE VF trial, evaluating alternate defibrillation strategies in refractory ventricular fibrillation. Finally, Dr. Cheskes is the principal investigator of the AED on the Fly research study exploring the use of drone technology to improve AED use and survival from rural out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

Tim Westhaver
CANet® Patient Partner, Panelist

Tim will be joining our speakers above in our Armchair Panel Discussion

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Tim Westhaver is retired living in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Tim lives with his wife Susan has two children, Malcolm and Natalie whom both have inherited HCM (Hypertrophic Cardio Myopathy).

His family history of HCM and its life-ending arrhythmias has been a call-to-action for Tim.

Tim has recently become a CANet Patient Advisory Council (PAC) member.

He is also a committee member of VIRTUES (and the remote virtual care for pacemaker and implantable cardiac devices study)
In other related cardiac support groups, he is a moderator for the The HCMA is a grass-root patient advocacy organization that is worldwide in scope. Over the last 20 years it has played a large part in creating a “gold standard” for the diagnosis and treatment of HCM.

Tim’s professional career was highlighted by being a co-founder and president of Meridian Communications Group, Atlantic Canada’s first full service-print brokerage.

Tim’s volunteer resume consists of involvement in many community endeavors. Highlights include past president of Saint Mary’s University alumni association, Reading Recovery instructor Halifax public school system and minor hockey coach Chebucto minor hockey .

He has high hopes for both VIRTUES and the continued success of CANet.

The collaboration and communication exchanges brought about by CANet will surely be a life saver in the future.

Emerging Technologies in Arrhythmia Care

Join us on February 4, 2020 for this exciting event!