Our People


The Improving Rural Health Initiative is a partnership between the Lao PDR Ministry of Health, the Laos University of Health Sciences and the University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine.


Our People:


The Improving Rural Health Initiative  - A Lao PDR & University of Calgary Collaboration operates under the University of Calgary Global Health and International Partnerships through a Memorandum of Understanding between the two universities.


Current Key Calgary Team Members


Dr Heather Baxter            Dr Brenda Lee

Dr Katie Billinghurst         Dr Jane Lemaire

Dr Christopher Brown      Ms Alexis Mageau

Dr Eliana Castillo             Dr Ruth Malus

Ms Karen Chadbolt          Ms Laurie Manion

Dr Rita Dahlke                 Dr Jaelene Mannerfeldt

Dr Adriena De Visser       Dr Greg McKinnon

Dr Cristin Fitzgerald         Dr Steve Mintsoulis

Dr Amy Gausvik               Dr Magali Robert

Dr Janice Heard               Dr Sheila Scott

Dr Gwen Hollaar              Dr Nishan Sharma

Dr John Kortbeek             Dr Karen Tang

Dr Martin Labrie               Dr Ian Wishart



Past and Current Key Contributors


Laos Officials

His Excellency, Minister of Health - Dr Bounkong Syhavong

Deputy Minister of Health - Dr Phouthone Moungpak

His Excellency, Former Minister of Health - Dr Ponmek Dalaloy

His Excellency, Former Minister of Health - Dr Eksavang Vongvichit


University Health Sciences, Laos (UHS)

Acting President  - Dr Phouthone  Vangkonevilay

Dean, Faculty of Medicine - Dr. Ketsomsouk Bouphavanh

Vice Dean Post Graduate Medical Education (PGME) - Dr Alongkone Phengsavanh

Dean, Faculty of Public Health - Dr Vanphanome Sychareun

Coordinator, Family Medicine Specialist Program - Dr Visanou Hansana

Program Director Family Medicine Specialist Program - Dr Oua Phimmasarn


Past Key Contributors, University of Calgary

Dr Clarence and Marie Guenther

Dr John Baumber

Dr Bob Bell

Dr Bruce Wright

Dr Robert Lee



Funding Partners:


 We currently receive funding from:

  • Private donations
  • University of Calgary Undergraduate Medical Education
  • Donations in-kind by U Calgary project team members
  • Rotary International

© 2020 Improving Rural Health Initiative