MARIA ISABEL SUAREZ is foreign-trained health care professional with a Master’s degree in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is currently a Research Ethics Coordinator at the SickKids Research Ethics Board and has worked in this role for almost 4 years now. Prior to this, she worked for almost 6 years at 2 other hospital REBs in Toronto, involved with the review with mostly adult research including vulnerable adult and child populations. She has worked as a clinical research coordinator for HIV and oncology clinical drug trials and qualitative studies in adult diabetes.
In addition to her role as Research Ethics Coordinator at the SickKids REB, she is actively involved with creating and presenting education sessions for the SickKids research community. She is a strong advocate for educating study teams through pre- and post-submission consults. She is involved in the review of multiple innovative new studies involving children including research in foster children, gene therapy and online consenting using a social media app. She has participated in the creation of consent template documents for the SickKids Central Biobank. research biobanking and industry partner sharing of research samples and data. She was the REB counterpart for testing the SickKids Case Manager Model, a new initiative involving multiple stakeholders, designed to facilitate the review and regulatory approval of investigator-initiated studies.
During her spare time, she has volunteered extensively in her community working mostly with immigrant and refugee populations. She also currently works with older individuals with dementia and other chronic medical conditions.