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Volunteer Advocate

Spotlight on Healthcare

Q&A with… a Respirologist
Julian Tam, Saskatoon Adult Cystic Fibrosis Clinic

1. COULD YOU PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF?

My name is Julian Tam. I’m a respirologist and the director of the Saskatoon Adult Cystic Fibrosis Clinic. I completed a Cystic Fibrosis Canada Clinical Fellowship at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto in 2014 followed by a fellowship in Lung Transplantation at Toronto General Hospital. I’ve been working at the University of Saskatchewan since 2015.

2. WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO WORK IN A CF CLINIC?

I was involved in the care of two memorable individuals with CF early in my medical training. As I progressed in my training, I found meaning in caring for patients with the condition and became interested in the science underlying CF.

3. WHAT IS A TYPICAL DAY LIKE?

My team holds a multidisciplinary CF clinic at least once per week. After clinic, I visit my patients who are admitted to hospital. I liaise throughout the day with Niki Afseth, our amazing clinic nurse, and work with her to address issues our patients are facing. I stay in frequent contact with my research collaborator, Dr. Juan Ianowski, to discuss ideas and research findings. I am also involved in the education of medical students and resident physicians at the hospital.

After work, I enjoy running alongside the South Saskatchewan River or exercising at the gym. In the summer, I maintain a balcony garden.

4. WHAT HAS BEEN THE GREATEST HIGHLIGHT OF WORKING WITH PEOPLE LIVING WITH CF FOR YOU?

An individual with CF is not defined by their disease; it is incredibly gratifying when we are able to support our patients’ health and help them achieve their life goals.

5. WHY DO YOU THINK IT’S IMPORTANT TO SUPPORT CF CANADA?

I have recommended my family and friends to donate to CF Canada because it is a well-run organization that supports both the current care of people with CF as well as research that can lead to better treatments and care strategies.