Mental Health Awareness Month

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness about the importance of mental health and destigmatize mental health issues. For transplant recipients and their caregivers, mental health is a crucial aspect of their overall wellbeing, as they navigate the physical and emotional challenges of the transplantation process. Studies have shown that caregivers are at risk of experiencing mental and physical health challenges, and transplant recipients may experience depression, anxiety, and PTSD. It’s important to prioritize mental health and seek support when needed, whether it’s through therapy, support groups, or other resources. By acknowledging the importance of mental health, we can support the wellbeing of transplant recipients and their caregivers and help them thrive in their post-transplant journey.

  • CDTRP Special Interview with Dr. Puneeta Tandon & Dr. Dayna Lee-Baggley

Communications Manager, Stéphanie, had the chance to meet with Dr. Puneeta Tandon, Professor of Medicine at the University of Alberta, Co-Director of the Cirrhosis Care Clinic and Transplant Hepatologist, and Dr. Dayna Lee-Baggley, Registered Psychologist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at Dalhousie University, as part of the Mental Health Awareness Month.

During the interview, Drs Tandon and Lee-Baggley speak about the intersection between mental health and liver diseases and transplantation. They discuss how mental health came into their practice and explain how liver diseases and transplantation can impact a person’s overall quality of life and mental well-being. They also address common misconceptions about mental health and seeking therapy.

Additionally, the interview dives into The EMPOwer Program, a 12-week online wellness program for people 50+ who have received an organ transplant. Dr. Tandon and Lee-Baggley provide insight into the program and discuss how it has helped improve the mental and physical health of participants.

This interview sheds light on the importance of addressing mental health in the context of liver diseases and transplantation and offers valuable insights into how we can better support patients in this area.

Listen to the full interview below.

Join the 12-Week EMPOwer Program Now!

The clinically-proven program focuses on movement, breathwork, mindfulness, and psychology tips to help you live your best life. You will also receive weekly educational tips from expert clinicians, and have the opportunity to join an online community of others who have received an organ transplant. The group is currently recruiting adults 50+ to participate in their research study, and they ask for a minimum time commitment of 90-120 minutes spread across each week.

Join today and see the difference EMPOwer can make in your life!

About Dr. Puneeta Tandon

Dr. Puneeta Tandon (MD, FRCP(C), MSc(Epi)) is a Gastroenterologist, Transplant Hepatologist and Faculty member at the University of Alberta since 2007. She is founder and co-director of the Cirrhosis Care Clinic and is currently appointed as a Professor in the Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine at the University of Alberta.

Dr. Tandon is an active researcher who is driven by the desire to empower people with chronic conditions with practical tools for improving knowledge, physical and mental well-being. At both the national and international levels, she is frequently invited to speak about areas including cirrhosis, nutrition, exercise, mental health and chronic disease symptom management.

About Dr. Dayna Lee-Baggley

Dr. Dayna Lee-Baggley is a Registered Psychologist in BC, AB, ON and NS in Clinical and Organizational Psychology. She specializes in facilitating change for individuals, teams, leaders and organizations. She is a senior facilitator providing healthy workplace interventions. She has extensive applied experience and research knowledge on behaviour change, team functioning, conflict resolution, workplace restoration, diversity, equity, inclusion, trauma-informed workplaces, restorative justice, and organizational change. She also leads all research projects. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine with cross-appointments in the Departments of Psychology and Surgery at Dalhousie University in Family Medicine and is an Adjunct Professor at Saint Mary’s University in the Department of Psychology and the Chief of Research for the Howatt HR Applied Workplace Research Institute. She has the lived experience of being a bi-racial daughter of an Asian immigrant. She strives to make training meaningful and safe using evidence-based methods and processes.