Candace D. McNaughton (Canada)

Associate Professor

Emergency services, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Sunnybrook Research Institute
Department of Medicine, University of Toronto

What is your role at your work?

My clinical work as an emergency physician is a constant source of motivation for research. My current research focuses mainly on health services research for patients with heart failure, hypertension, and now post-acute complications of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

How did you get interested in your career path?

Research provides opportunities to dive into the hows and whys of disease, with the hope of improving clinical care. Every time I find a new unknown or gap in evidence when I take care of patients, it adds a new research question to the long list of to-do’s.

What are you most proud of in your career or otherwise?

In research there are many “opportunities” for learning and to develop creativity and perseverance. Sometimes the value of our work is recognized years later, and often it isn’t the work we thought other people would find important. Finding joy and growth in the daily hard work and failures is important.

What important career challenges have you faced and how did you overcome them?

Research is a team sport, and behind every successful researcher there are multiple full-time support roles. It is important to work in a team and institution that recognizes and values every team member.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Keep going, keep working. Find mentors who will show you how to identify what you need. Seek out sponsors who can support and connect you with other potential collaborators and leadership.

Highlight your most significant research contributions and publications (3-5) – if relevant to you.

1. Feasibility and Short-Term Effects of a Multi-Component Emergency Department Blood Pressure Intervention: A Pilot Randomized Trial. J Am Heart Assoc. 2022 Mar;11(5):e024339. PMID: 35195015

2. An LC-MS assay for the screening of cardiovascular medications in human samples. J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci. 2013 Oct 15;937:44-53. PMID: 24013190

3. Systolic Blood Pressure and Biochemical Assessment of Adherence: A Cross-Sectional Analysis in the Emergency Department. Hypertension. 2017 Aug;70(2):307-314. PMID: 28652467

Have you had any significant career mentors? If yes, please provide further details.

I have been fortunate to benefit from mentors and sponsors from multiple disciplines in every stage of my career, to name a few: Drs. Phil Levy, Christianne Roumie, Nancy Brown, Russell Rothman, and so many others.

How can we support the next generation of women scientists?

Women, particularly minority women, often experience barriers that are so pervasive that they have become invisible. For us to benefit from their unique perspectives, we must not only search them out but also continue to actively support them throughout their careers.