Centenary Medal – Colleen Varcoe

Dr. Colleen Varcoe has a clinical background in Emergency and Critical Care. Her research focuses on violence and inequity, emphasizing structural and interpersonal violence. Her completed research includes studies of risks and health effects of violence and how to promote health for women who experience violence. She also has studied the key dimensions of equity-oriented care (which include cultural safety, harm reduction, and trauma- and violence-informed care).

Currently, she focuses on intervention research and knowledge mobilization. She is co-leading development and testing of on-line and nurse-delivered health interventions for women who have experienced violence. This includes an in-progress randomized controlled trial of the approach and a study with Indigenous women completed in collaboration with Indigenous Elders now being developed into a program by the Vancouver Women’s Health Collective. Building on development and testing of an organizational intervention to promote equity in Primary Health Care (PHC), she is leading a similar study in Emergency Departments, and leading efforts to create tools to promote equity for use by practitioners. She is the author of textbooks on nursing, and on Women’s Health. She is a founding board member of a new Indigenous-led PHC clinic in the Downtown Eastside. She teaches paragliding for fun.