CAPO Innovation Award

Nominations for 2019 is closed.

The Androgen Deprivation Therapy Educational Team

The core team of the Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ADT) Educational Team is comprised of Drs. Richard Wassersug, Erik Wibowo, John Robinson, Lauren Walker, Andrew Matthew, and Deborah McLeod. We work together to help prostate cancer patients maintain a good quality of life while on ADT. The impetus for the ADT Educational Program began after Richard Wassersug, currently an Honorary Professor at the University of British Columbia and a prostate cancer patient, started ADT treatment some 18 years ago. Richard was curious about the physiological and psychosocial effects of ADT and began research on them. Independently, Dr. John Robinson, a Clinical Psychologist with the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary, started working with prostate cancer patients in the 1980s. Over the years, he observed that many prostate cancer patients on ADT lacked support to manage ADT-related side effects. Under Dr. Robinson’s supervision, Dr. Lauren Walker began working with men on ADT in 2007 as a Masters student. During her PhD, her dissertation formed the basis of the team’s book, Androgen Deprivation Therapy: An Essential Guide for Prostate Cancer Patients and Their Loved Ones. Now it its second edition, and also translated into French, the book has sold over 60,000 copies. Dr. Walker now an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Calgary, continues to facilitate ADT classes and also champions patient access and staff training of the program on an international level. To sort out physiological reality of ADT from placebo effects, Dr. Wassersug began with preclinical research investigating how rodents responded to androgen deprivation. Dr. Erik Wibowo joined him in this research, first as a PhD student and later as his postdoctoral fellow. Erik contributed to the implementation of the ADT Educational Program, and served as Program Coordinator from 2014-2018. Dr. Andrew Matthew, Clinical Psychologist from the Princess Margaret Health Cancer Centre in Toronto, and Dr. Deborah McLeod, Clinician Scientist and Adjunct Professor from Dalhousie University in Halifax, have been involved in the ADT Educational Program since its inception. They have offered face-to-face ADT classes as part of the ADT Educational Program in their cancer centres, making it a truly national program. The newest member of the team is Carly Sears, who joined as Project Coordinator in 2018, when Dr. Wibowo moved to a faculty position at the University of Otago, New Zealand. The ADT Educational Program is now available in face-to-face format in several Canadian cancer centres and is also available online so that patients and partners can access the program regardless of where they live. Well over 1,500 men and partners have participated in the face-to-face classes, which began in 2014; 324 have participated in the online program, which was implemented in 2018. Most recently, the program has been offered at the Moffitt Cancer Centre in Tampa and plans are underway to make the program available to Europeans and Australians.

The CAPO Innovation Award honours the development of quality improvement and innovative clinical, educational, or organizational initiatives aimed at enhancing the performance of psychosocial cancer care or cancer prevention. Award submissions will be rated based on originality and scope, impact of initiative on processes, impact of initiative on stakeholders, meaningfulness, value for money and sustainability.


  • The nominees may be an individual or a team of individuals working within psychosocial cancer care or prevention.
  • Eligibility is limited to members in good standing of CAPO (in cases of teams of individuals, at least one team member must be a members in good standing of CAPO).

Application Criteria

  • Nominator must be a CAPO Member (Regular, Affiliate, Retired) in good standing.
  • Application for the award will consist of:
    • A confidential letter of nomination from the nominator.
    • One letter of support from other individuals to whom the nominee(s) is known, also specifying why the nominee(s) meet(s) the award description above (supporters need not be CAPO members).
    • Complete curriculum vitae, with details of specific termination dates of degrees and post-graduate training. In cases of a team nomination, a complete CV of the team lead(s).
    • Statement from the nominee(s), not to exceed 500 words, highlighting significant accomplishments in the area of psychosocial oncology (research, clinical or education).

Application Process

  • Complete nomination packages must be submitted electronically to the Chair(s) of the Awards Committee (c/o the CAPO office) by no later than April 30, 2019. Submissions should be in PDF format – in one file.
    Please submit to:
  • Nominations and supporting documentation can be submitted in either French or English.
  • The Awards Committee will invite members of the CAPO Board (barring those with real or perceived conflicts of interest) to review the nominations and vote for a recipient of the award. In the event of a tie vote, the last three CAPO past presidents, excluding the immediate past president (who are clear of any conflict of interest) will review the tied nominations and vote amongst themselves to select a winner.
  • There is no monetary value to this award.
  • Award will be presented at the annual CAPO Conference

Previous Innovation Award recipients:

  • 2019 Recipient: The Androgen Deprivation Therapy Educational Team
  • 2016 Recipient: Dr. Carole Mayer, RSW, PhD

The Canadian Association of
Psychosocial Oncology (CAPO)

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