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What's New

August 2019

Government of Canada invests $1.4M in biomedical research to improve the quality of life of people living with myalgic encephalomyelitis 

This $1.4M, five-year investment aims to improve the quality of life of people living with ME through:

  • investigating the causes of ME, including possible links to viruses and genes;
  • linking cohorts of patients and researchers in Canada and the US, enabling investigators to share research samples, clinical data, and analysis methods;
  • supporting graduate students working on ME to build Canadian capacity to research this condition; and
  • benefiting from the wisdom of people with ME who are active research partners.  

Find out more about the role of the Complex Chronic Diseases Program in this research.

Read the full News Release from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

June 2019

Friends & Family Event 
Saturday June 15, 2019   1:00 - 3:00pm 

Presented by Dr. Ric Arseneau at BC Women's Hospital, Vancouver.

This is a free event, however, Registration is Required.

Please contact CCDP Booking to register for webinar or for attending in-person: 

April 2019

BC Women’s welcomes Dr. Luis Nacul as the new Medical Director for the CCDP

We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Luis Nacul as the new medical director and research director of the Complex Chronic Diseases Program (CCDP). 
“We are very lucky to have Dr. Nacul join our team and lead CCDP,” says Dr. Stephanie Rhone, senior medical director, specialized programs, at BC Women’s. “Dr. Nacul will have dedicated research time in addition to his clinical and administration work, which is a huge asset to the program. His research expertise will inform the way we treat patients and open the door to new discoveries.”

Dr. Nacul is an internationally renowned leading clinician and researcher in his field with a broad understanding of complex chronic diseases treated at CCDP from medical, health services and research perspectives.
“It is a privilege for me to join such a dedicated team at one of a few centres in the world that specifically treats complex chronic diseases,” says Dr. Nacul. “I look forward to starting my new role and the opportunity to work in a collaborative environment that involves patient and community groups that are most affected.”

One of the challenges in treating complex chronic diseases is that their causes are unclear. In his capacity as CCDP research director, Dr. Nacul will leverage an established clinical program to expand research into complex chronic diseases. This is an important gain for the program, as CCDP patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis /chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), fibromyalgia syndrome and symptoms attributed to chronic Lyme-like disease will be able to benefit directly from research discoveries.

Dr. Nacul will also have an appointment as a researcher with the Women’s Health Research Institute. His research time is funded by the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) Foundation through its BCCDC Foundation Research Scholar Award.

Virtual Health

The Complex Chronic Diseases Program (CCDP) is excited to offer patients the opportunity to attend some of their appointments virtually. In a Virtual Health visit you are able to see, hear and speak to your health care providers in the same way as an in-person visit, using secured live video-conferencing technology. Click here to find out more.

Have you watched our videos yet?

We are building a video library to share more information with you. We have videos on many different topics related to chronic disease and management. Check out our videos:  

What are Central Sensitivity Syndromes?                                            Fibromyalgia is complex                                                                Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome                    What is Sleep Hygiene?                                                                       

Interested in joining a support group?

Living with chronic illness can feel like a never-ending journey. Many feel as if they have come from a past which represents all things lost, and are heading towards a future that is riddled with unknowns. Sharing one's story and knowing that you are not alone can provide compassion and an empathetic understanding to those living with chronic illness. Visit People in Pain Network for info on support options in your community.

New Info for IBS Sufferers  

Dr. Mark Pimentel, gastroenterologist at Cedars-Sinai, suggests Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms could be a result of the disruption of the normal motility in digestion. This can lead to an overgrowth of bacteria in the intestines which then contributes to the symptoms experienced by IBS sufferers. Consider discussing this topic with your primary care provider and read more about it at the Pimentel Laboratory.  

Pain intervention: Trigger Point Injections, "What to expect"

Trigger Point Injections is a pain treatment for people who have tried most medication options but continue to struggle with pain control. We encourage patients to discuss trigger point injections with their primary care provider and if appropriate, request a referral to a community provider. Check out our handout, What to Expect, which provides information about trigger point injections before and after treatment.

Event Planning Tips

The holiday season has passed (phew!). Regardless of the season it can be helpful to have a toolkit for managing events all year round. Check out our event planning toolkit, PEN down your event plans .

Previous CCDP updates

November 2018

New Model of Care Development

The Complex Chronic Diseases Program is excited to announce that we are developing a new model of care to better support our clients. We are changing our current model to increase client accessibility through telehealth, build connections amongst clients, and reduce wait times between appointments. The new model of care will broaden our ability to support clients after they participate in our program and provide resources while they are on the waitlist.

Our new program will focus on offering group based education and self-management support, while continuing to offer 1:1 medical visits. This group education format is supported by client feedback and research. The new model of care will roll out in early 2019. As we develop this new model we will continue to see clients, and will communicate with our current clients about how this change may impact their journey with us. Please check back to the website for updates on our progress.

Complex Chronic Disease Program Awards

The Complex Chronic Disease Program team wins two significant awards!

  • Award of Excellence for Interprofessional Collaboration: This award honours exemplary interprofessional collaborative practices, leadership and excellence from individuals and teams throughout BC Women's Hospital, BC Women's Hospital & Health Centre, and Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children. 
  • PHSA+ Awards: We share this award with BC Cancer and the Office of Virtual Health. This award celebrates the people and projects who exemplify PHSA's value of leadership in providing excellent care for vulnerable populations. 

March 2018

International Awareness Day

May 12 is International Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases. This day recognizes a host of diseases that include Fibromyalgia, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and Golf War Syndrome. Click here to find out more


  • In May 2017, The CCDP, in partnership with our Community Advisory Committee, held a World Cafe style engagement event. Read the CCDP World Cafe report from this event.


  • We have received several questions around the role of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) in the Program.  Please click here to learn more about CBT in the program and the patient experience. 


  • We are excited to share that we are embarking on a project to make more information available to the community through the use of patient and public education videos. 
  • For an update on The Complex Chronic Diseases Study, led by Dr. Patrick, click here.
  • To watch an interview Dr. Patrick gave on Lyme Disease, click here.



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