2021 CRA Distinguished Rheumatologist
Dr. Rachel Shupak MD FRCPC
Dr. Rachel Shupak received her fellowship in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology from University of Toronto in 1981 and has been on staff at St. Michael’s Hospital since January 1982. She was the first and only full time GFT in rheumatology for several years and subsequently, they have grown into a robust division with eight outstanding academic clinicians. Dr. Shupak’s clinical focus has been on inflammatory MSK conditions with specific interests in hemophilic arthropathy and idiopathic inflammatory myopathies.
In 1995, Dr. Shupak was promoted to Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine with a job description of Clinician Educator. Over the past 40 years, she has had the pleasure of teaching and mentoring many undergraduate students, postgraduate residents and rheumatology residents. In her role as Clinician Educator, together with her colleagues, Dr. Shupak has been fortunate to have the opportunity to develop, operationalize and evaluate innovative Educational Programs for primary care clinicians, patients and allied health professionals.
The Annual Arthritis Day for Primary Care Clinicians has continued into its 14th year and addresses relevant MSK gaps in knowledge of family docs and ACPAC practitioners. The Prescription for Education Program was developed by an inter-professional group at St. Michael’s Hospital to address knowledge and improve self-management of patients with inflammatory arthritis. This academic program is delivered biannually by an inter-professional group via telemedicine across Ontario.
Dr. Shupak describes the ‘jewel in her crown’ as the Advanced Clinician Practitioner in Arthritis Care program that was co-developed with her esteemed colleague Dr. Katie Lundon. This academic/residency program has created a new cadre of clinician practitioners to address the current and growing gap in access to care for patients with arthritis and MSK conditions. One hundred highly knowledgeable and skilled practitioners, graduates of this rigorous program, are poised to work in a model of shared care delivery.