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How data analysis saves lives: Celebrating PHSA+ recipient Yvonne Sun

Yvonne Sun is one of this year’s PHSA+ recipients due to her dedication, passion and positive attitude. Learn more about how her work at BC Transplant impacts patient care and has helped to advance the field of donation and transplantation overall.
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​​Yvonne Sun has been a BC Transplant team member for about 20 years, since 2001, when she began her journey as an information analyst. 

While her position isn’t one in the spotlight, Yvonne’s work is vital to the health care outcomes of patients all over the province as the information she provides to clinicians directly affects patient care. To celebrate her PHSA+ award, we spoke to Yvonne about her work and career. 

An unsung health care hero: two decades behind the scenes

Yvonne was humbled when she found out she was a PHSA+ recipient but her recognition is no surprise. Throughout her career, Yvonne has worked in various environments beginning in China where she started her medical background, to the department of pathology at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. where she worked as a research staff member, and finally here to Vancouver. 

Acting as BC Transplant’s only information analyst for about 17 years, Yvonne prepared more than 700 reports annually in order to support all BC Transplant data requests.

“For patients with end-stage disease of the heart, liver, lungs and kidneys, organ transplantation is the only chance for them to survive. I analyze and provide patient information to clinicians. I’m proud I work in the health care system and can contribute to the process of saving lives."​
​In recent years, there have been about 450 to 500 transplants performed in B.C. each year. Although her work life can be quite busy, Yvonne is happy that her efforts directly help so many patients, including the 451 lives saved due to organ donations and transplants in 2020. 

When working with specialists and other colleagues, Yvonne is known not only for her expertise in data analysis, but also for the way she carries herself when urgent projects come in. 

Consensus among directors and doctors: BC Transplant wouldn’t be the same without Yvonne
​“She’s always ready to respond to our ad hoc requests no matter how extensive and how last minute,” says one BC Transplant pharmacy manager, Dominique Khoo. Well known for her smile and positive attitude, Yvonne completes requests in a timely manner, making sure to perform validation checks along the way. 

Storytelling through data is a unique task and one Yvonne does in a meaningful and pragmatic format, allowing audiences to quickly understand and appreciate the data’s significance. This includes data for national groups such as Canadian Blood Services, the Canadian Organ Replacement Register, Canadian Institute of Health Information and the International Society of Heart & Lung Transplant.

According to Dr. Tom Blydt-Hansen, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of British Columbia, Yvonne’s ability to assess and explain data has been invaluable to their pediatric research program.

​“When we think of data support at BC Transplant, we think of Yvonne. She is truly indispensable and I don’t know how we would keep up without her.”​
Yvonne’s manager and PHSA+ nominator, Parvind Grewal, was not sure her words would do justice to Yvonne’s capabilities. “BC Transplant’s reporting team and all the transplant programs rely heavily on Yvonne’s expertise and experience,” she explains. 

When asked about who inspires her, Yvonne humbly credits Parvind, her teammates on the Health information Management team and those involved in organ donation and transplantation as inspirations. 

“I’m inspired by my coworkers. They all work hard behind the scenes efficiently and effectively and dedicate themselves to organ donation and transplantation. Every one of them deserves an award.” ​

Congratulations Yvonne and thank you for living out PHSA values every day through your dedication and hard work.  

About the PHSA+ Awards program

The PHSA+ Awards are part of an internal recognition program that celebrates teams and individuals who bring our PHSA values to life in the workplace. They go above and beyond to serve patients and families across B.C. Read about the other PHSA+ award recipients for 2021.

 
 
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