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Meet The Educators

Learn more about our independent Medical, Educational and Cannabis Sciences Board members, who help develop and oversee all our original content on cannabis education.

Dr. Daniel Bal, MD

Stamford Health

“I have been an advocate for the use of cannabis based treatments for health care and to improve the quality of life for certain patients for quite some time.”

After earning a medical degree from the American University of Antigua College of Medicine, Magna Cum Laude, Dr. Bal completed his residency at Stamford Hospital/Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons in Family Medicine. Having also completed three years of General Surgery Residency at Stamford Hospital and SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York, Dr. Bal remains active in medical research, competing in many research competitions and presentations. Dr. Bal also has a particular interest in wound care, and practices at the Stamford Hospital Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center.

Dr. Shirish Patel, MD

Medical Advisor

“Working at a medical cannabis clinic in Toronto, I witness the benefits of medical cannabis on a regular basis and strongly believe technology will play an important role in the delivery and education of medical cannabis, leading to improved patient outcomes.”

Dr. Patel is an engineer-turned-clinician with a passion for neurology, psychiatry, pharmacology and electronic healthcare delivery. His strengths lie in clinical research and evidence-based support for health care providers. Dr. Patel currently works as a Neuropsychiatric Intake Specialist and Counselor for a private psychosomatic psychiatry clinic in Toronto, as Medical Advisor for My Natural Living Life, a concierge medical cannabis clinic, and Medical Advisor for Trendlines Health Inc., a company specializing in remote data acquisition and analytics from wearable health devices. (In 2018, Dr. Patel presented five scientific posters at the American Psychiatric Association (APA) annual meeting, developed in collaboration with leading psychiatrists and psychiatry residents from Canada and the U.S.)

Stacey Patterson, RN

University Health Network

“When used responsibly for the right conditions, cannabis can provide relief from a range of symptoms but it is important for people to learn that, like other treatments, it will have different effects on different people.”

A critical care nurse at Toronto’s University Health Network, Ms. Patterson works regularly with patients at Toronto General and Toronto Western Hospitals. Her specialization lies in developing relationships with doctors, caregivers and patients in neurology, medical/surgical/transplant, cardiac and critical care units. Ms. Patterson earned a Bachelor of Nursing from the University of New Brunswick as well as Certificates in Critical Care and Nephrology, and consistently reviews academic and medical papers and studies for evidence of cannabis’ potential effects related to health care.

Aislin O'Hara

O'Hara & Associates Consulting Inc.

“Older adults are increasingly curious about cannabis as an alternative to traditional pharmaceuticals and benefit greatly from specialized content to address their health care concerns with no pressure to purchase or consume.”

A Certified Professional Consultant on Aging (CPCA), Ms. O’Hara spent 12 years supporting seniors’ initiatives within the public sector, where she established herself as a trusted professional among seniors’ services and support agencies. Among her recent positions was Project Lead - Customer Experience for the Toronto Transit Commission’s Wheel-Trans program, whose customer base is vastly comprised of seniors with disabilities. In 2018, she founded O’Hara & Associates Consulting Inc. to provide advice and consultation to businesses and services on how to appropriately serve Canadian seniors and put them at the forefront of strategies and market growth plans. Among her notable accomplishments, Ms. O’Hara helped develop the 2017 and 2018 Toronto Seniors Strategy and the Toronto HomeShare Pilot (in partnership with the National Initiative of Care for the Elderly). She maintains professional affiliations with a number of senior-focused organizations including the Age-Friendly Business Alliance, among others.

Tom Loutskou, M.ED

Toronto District School Board

“I have long been a vocal supporter of medicinal cannabis use for pain management and treatment of other ailments.”

Mr. Loutskou is continuing an active 17-year teaching career as an educator with the Toronto District School Board with a focus on health and physical education. He graduated from York University with an Honours Bachelor of Science, Majors in Kinesiology and Biology and a Bachelor of Education, and also earned a Masters of Education from Nipissing University.

Elizabeth Moniz

Toronto District School Board

“I believe science-based information empowers people with the education needed to make healthy living choices.”

A 20-year veteran in the education field as a teacher, mentor, and workshop leader, Ms. Moniz has extensive experience in health education. Through intensive research and relatable lesson plans, she has helped hundreds of students thoroughly understand the implications of using a variety of substances. Ms. Moniz earned an Honours Bachelor of Science and a Post-Graduate Degree in Child Studies from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto.