Virtual Obesity Course


Learn to help your patients living with obesity is a four-week, comprehensive educational initiative designed to help healthcare providers better manage patients living with obesity. 

Closely following the new Canadian Clinical Practice Guidelines for Adult Obesity, this new interactive course will provide participants with foundational knowledge in regards to the pathophysiology, drivers, and science of obesity, as well as guide them through a therapeutic approach to assessment and management for both adults and pediatrics. Participants will be provided with an approach, tools, and resources to help better manage patients. The 5As Team has developed a comprehensive educational program that was developed, piloted, and refined for use with medical residents, physicians, and interdisciplinary team members. The training program has now been adapted for the virtual environment.

What to expect
This virtual course uses a flipped classroom design. Participants will be provided with pre-recorded content videos to watch prior to attending live. During the interactive sessions, participants will have the opportunity to ask questions, interact in case-based discussions with subject matter experts, and share their reflections. In addition, participants will be introduced to and have an opportunity to practice using an evidence-based approach to consultations that healthcare providers can use in their own practice.
Learning objectives
  • Identify obesity as a chronic disease
  • Support patients to understand how their comorbidities and personal context are related to their obesity management 
  • Apply the 5As of Obesity Management in interdisciplinary team care 
  • Perform obesity assessments that identify root causes and care priorities through a collaborative clinical approach 
  • Recognize the impact of weight stigma on people’s experiences of care and the importance of advocating to improve access and reduce bias in the healthcare system 
  • Understand and select therapeutic approaches (lifestyle, medication, surgery, behavioural) to help patients develop personalized plans
Featured topics

Topics presented

Dr. Shahebina Walji, MD, CCFP, ABOM
Clinical Assistant Professor, Dept of Family Medicine, University of Calgary
Medical Director, Calgary Weight Management Centre

  • Science of Obesity
  • Bariatric Surgery

Dr. Sarah Nutter, BA, MSc, PhD
Assistant Professor of Counselling Psychology, Educational Psychology and Leadership Studies, University of Victoria

  • Weight Bias & Stigma

Dr. Denise Campbell-Scherer, MD, PhD, CCFP, FCFP
Family Physician, Professor, Family Medicine, Associate Dean, Office of Lifelong Learning & Physician Learning Program

  • Approach to Assessment & Management in Adult Obesity

Dr. Stasia Hadjiyannakis, MD, FRCPC
Pediatric Endocrinologist, CHEO

Dr. Laurie Clarke, C. Psych
Clinical Psychologist, CHEO

  • Approach to Assessment & Management in Pediatric Obesity

Dr. Amy McPherson, PhD, Registered Psychotherapist (Qualifying)
Senior Scientist, Bloor Research Institute
Associate Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health & Rehabilitation Sciences Institute, University of Toronto

  • Considerations in Pediatric Obesity and weight-related communication

Dr. Danya Lee-Baggley, PhD, R. Psych.
Director, Dr. Lee-Baggley and Associates (virtual health psychology clinic)
Director, Behaviour Change Research institute, Dalhousie University

  • Behavioural Management of Obesity

Dr. Marsha Kucera, MD, CCFp, ABOM, MScHQ
Site Medical Lead, Sunridge Family Medical Teaching Centre
University of Calgary, Cumming School of Medicine

  • Lifestyle Management: Medical Nutrition Therapy and Physical Activity

Dr. Tasneem Sajwani, MBBS, CCFP, FCFP, ABOMd
Medical Director, Edmonton Weight Management Centre
Family Physician and Obesity Medicine Physician

  • Pharmacotherapy
CME credits

Members of CFPC can claim CME credits by completing a Linking to Learning exercise and/or earn up to 6 credits by completing a Personal Development cycle through the MyL3Plan tool.

RCPSC members can claim credits with the MyL3Plan or they can do a Personal Learning Project (2 credits per hour) on the MAINPORT site.


Denise Campbell-Scherer, MD, PhD, CCFP, FCFP


Dr. Campbell-Scherer is a Professor in the Department of Family Medicine, and the Associate Dean of the Office of Lifelong Learning and Physician Learning Program at the University of Alberta. She completed her PhD in Pathology at Queen’s University prior to studying Medicine at the University of Toronto, graduating in 2000 and her residency in family medicine at McMaster University in 2002. She has worked in rural Northern Canada, the University of Michigan, and the University of Alberta as a family physician, with extensive experience in residency education and evidence-based medicine. 

She heads the 5As Team (5AsT) Program which aims to improve the primary care of patients living with obesity and has culminated in Dr. Campbell-Scherer serving on the executive of the 2020 Canadian Adult Obesity Guidelines.


Tasneem Sajwani, MBBS, CCFP, FCFP, ABOMdts.png

Dr. Sajwani practices family medicine and obesity medicine in Edmonton, Alberta. She completed her Family Medicine Training Program at the University of Alberta in 2008 and is diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine. She is committed to making obesity management accessible and to challenge obesity bias and stigma through her practice and advocacy. She is currently the Medical Director of the Edmonton Weight Management Centre & Family Practice. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, and when time (or the pandemic) permits, traveling adventures abroad.

Andrea Milne-Epp, MD, CCFP, FCFP, Diplomate ABOM.    dec1_22-219-2.jpg

Dr. Milne-Epp worked as a family doctor and resident faculty advisor for the Department of Family Medicine, University of Alberta, in Edmonton from 2001-2022. Since becoming a diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine in 2022, Dr. Milne-Epp hasbeen offering consults in obesity medicine at the Edmonton Weight Management Centre.  Her other practice interest is GP oncology. Her hobbies include travelling  (big city,  backcountry or home to Saskatchewan), long walks with her trusty canine companion and trying out new recipes on her three ever hungry children and husband.

Shahebina Walji, MD, CCFP, FCFP, ABOMd     2019-walji_mcmichon_05-1.jpg        

Dr. Shahebina Walji is an Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Calgary, and a Diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine. She received her medical degree from McMaster University and her Fam

ily Medicine designation from the University of Toronto. She offers clinical teaching to family medicine residents, and is extensively involved in t

he development of professional education programs to increase knowledge about obesity and its treatments to practicing health professionals. As the Medical Director of Calgary Weight Management Centre, Dr. Walji works with a specialized team to provide comprehensive and evidence-based care to patients who are trying to manage their weight. Dr. Walji is a co-author for the Primary Care Chapter of the 2020 Canadian Adult Obesity Clinical Practice Guidelines.


This four-week, comprehensive educational initiative is available to physicians, residents, medical students, and other healthcare providers for $475.00 +GST



Full refunds, cancellations, and transfers will be accepted up until digital course materials are sent out (usually 1-2 weeks prior to the course start date) after that time, we will only be able to issue a partial 50% refund.

A minimum of 10 registrations are required in order to run the course. 

If the workshop is canceled by the Office of Lifelong Learning due to low enrollment or other unforeseen circumstances, you will be issued a full refund or have the option of transferring your enrollment to another open session.

More questions?
Please contact Melanie Heatherington at if you have questions or concerns.

"I love the course! Supportive teachers and an excellent opportunity to meet other professionals!"

"Excellent course from very passionate and dedicated physicians."

"Loved the program. Very professional. Full of energy. Can tell that the presenters were very passionate. I have come away much more confident and have already done the tool 4-5 times with patients and it’s been great."