About Sickkids
About SickKids

Joel Kirsh, BASc, MSc, MD, FRCPC, FACC

The Hospital for Sick Children
Staff Cardiologist

Staff Physician
Critical Care Medicine

Section Head Electrophysiology

University of Toronto
Associate Professor

Governing Council

Other Positions

The Hospital for SickChildren
Electorphysiology & Arrhythmia Service
Section Head

The Hospital for Sick Children
Cardiac Clinic
Medical Director

Camp Oki
Founder and Medical Director

Phone: 416-813-6140
Fax: 416-813-7547
e-mail: joel.kirsh@sickkids.ca
Alternate Contact: Shelley Kahn
Alternate Phone: 416-813-7654 x 202604
Alternate e-mail: shelley.kahn@sickkids.ca

For more information, visit:

The Labatt Family Heart Centre

Brief Biography

Dr. Kirsh is a paediatric cardiac electrophysiologist focusing on heart rhythm abnormalities. After graduate training in biomedical engineering at Northwestern University in Chicago, Dr. Kirsh attended medical school at the University of Toronto followed by postgraduate training in Toronto, London and Boston, eventually returning to Toronto as staff in the Division of Cardiology. He is also cross-appointed in the Cardiac Critical Care program.

Dr. Joel Kirsh is also the Founder and Medical Director of Camp Oki, which he operates through the Labatt Family Heart Centre.

As a consultant to the Chief Coroner’s Office, Dr. Kirsh is also involved in investigation and prevention of sudden unexplained death in children and young adults. He is also responsible for coordinating charitable Public-Access Defibrillation programs in multiple school districts including the Toronto School Board – the largest such program in the world when it was launched in 2006.

Clinical Care Activities

  • General Paediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Critical Care
  • Catheter Ablation of Cardiac Arrhythmias
  • Pacemaker/Defibrillator Implantation & Management

Research Interests

  • Novel ablation therapies
  • Resynchronization pacing in congenital heart disease
  • Psychosocial impact of recreational interventions in children with heart disease


Kirsh JA, Gross GJ, O'Connor S, Hamilton RM, for the Cryocath International Patient Registry: Transcatheter cryoablation of tachyarrhythmias in children:  Initial experience from an international registry.  Journal of the American College of Cardiology 2005: 45: pp 133-136.

Harris L, Gow RM, Kirsh JA, Klein GJ, Siu S: Canadian Cardiovascular Society Consensus Conference on Atrial Fibrillation:  Atrial Arrhythmias and Special Circumstances.  Canadian Journal of Cardiology 2005: 21 supp B: pp 51B-60B.

Kirsh JA, Stephenson EA, Redington AN: Recovery of left ventricular systolic function after biventricular resynchronization pacing in a child with repaired Tetralogy of Fallot and severe biventricular dysfunction.  Circulation 2006: 113: pp 691-2.

Gross GJ, Chiu CC, Hamilton RM, Kirsh JA, Stephenson EA: Natural History of Postoperative Heart Block in Congenital Heart Disease: Implications for Pacing Intervention.  Heart Rhythm 2006: 3: pp 601-4.

Collins KK, Rhee EK, Kirsh JA, Cannon BA, Fish F, Dubin A, VanHare GF: Cryoablation of accessory pathways in the coronary sinus in young patients: A multicenter study from the Pediatric and Congenital Electrophysiology Society's Working Group on Cryoablation.  Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 2007: 18: pp 592-7.

Berul CI, Villafane J, Atkins DL, Cecchin F, Kirsh JA, Johns JA, Kanter RJ, Karpawich PP: Pacemaker lead prolapse through the pulmonary valve in children.  PACE 2007: 30: pp 1183-9.

Freedman SB, Haladyn KJ, Floh A, Kirsh JA, Taylor G, Thull-Freedman J: Myocarditis: Clinical Findings and Diagnostic Evaluation.  Pediatrics 2007: 120: pp 1278-1285. 

Moola F, Faulker GEJ, Kirsh JA, Kilburn J: Physical activity and sport participation in youth with congenital heart disease: perceptions of children and parents.  Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly 2008: 25: pp 49-70.

Templeton C, Kirsh JA: Paediatric Cardiology: Looking back, looking forward.  Pediatrics and Child Health 2009: 14.  CPA

Atz AM, Travison TG, Williams IA, Rychik J, Mahle W, Laussen P, Cook A, Pearson GD, Kirsh J, Sklansky M, Khaikin S, Goldberg C, Frommelt M, Krawczeski C, Puchalski M, Jacobs J, Baffa JM, Ohye RG: Prenatal Diagnosis and Risk Factors for Preoperative Death in Neonates with Single Right Ventricle and Systemic Outflow Obstruction: Screening Data from the PHN Single Ventricle Reconstruction Trial.  Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 2010: 140: pp 1245-50.

Moola F, Fusco C, Kirsh JA: "What I Wish You Knew": Social Barriers Towards Physical Activity in Youth with Congenital Heart Disease (CHD).  Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly 2011: 28: pp 56-77.

Moola F, Fusco C, Kirsh JA: The perceptions of caregivers toward physical activity and health in youth with congenital heart disease.  Qualitative Health Research 2011: 21: pp 278-291.

Moola FJ, Faulkner GEJ, Kirsh JA, Schneiderman J: Developing Exercise Interventions for Children with Cystic Fibrosis and Congenital Heart Disease: Learning from their Parents.  Psychology of Sport and Exercise 2011: 12: pp 599-608.

Tabbutt S, Ghanayem N, Ravishankar C, Sleeper L, Cooper D, Frank D, Lu M, Pizarro C, Frommelt P, Goldberg C, Graham E, Krawczeski C, Lai W, Lewis A, Kirsh J, Mahony L, Ohye R, Simsic J, Lodge A, Spurrier E, Stylianou M, Laussen P: Risk factors for hospital morbidity and mortality after the Norwood procedure: A report from the Pediatric Heart Network Single Ventricle Reconstruction trial.  Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 2012.

Kwong W, Neilson AL, Hamilton RM, Chiu CC, Stephenson EA, Gross GJ, Soucie L, Kirsh JA: The effect of NavX on fluoroscopy times in pediatric catheter ablation.  Journal of Interventional Cardiac Electrophysiology 2011.

Kirsh JA: Orbits and implants: trends in indications, utilization and complications in pediatric device therapy.  Heart Rhythm 2012.

Ohye R, Schonbeck J, Eghtesady P, Laussen P, Pizarro C, Shrader P, Frank D, Graham E, Hill K, Jacobs J, Kanter K, Kirsh J, Lambert L, Lewis A, Ravishankar C, Tweddell J, Williams I, Pearson D for the Pediatric Heart Network Investigators: Cause, Timing and Location of Death in the Single Ventricle Reconstruction Trial.  Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 2012.