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About Sickkids
About SickKids

Roxanne E. Kirsch, MD, FRCP(C), FAAP

The Hospital for Sick Children
Staff Physician, Cardiac CCCU
Critical Care Medicine

Phone: 416-813-7654 X228436
Email: Roxanne.Kirsch@sickkids.ca
Alternate Contact: Donna Cuscuna
Alternate Phone: 416-813-7654 x 205769
Alternate Email: donna.cuscuna@sickkids.ca

Brief Biography

Dr. Roxanne Kirsch joined The Hospital for Sick Children in 2016 in the Department of Critical Care Medicine, Division of Cardiac Critical Care, and in the Department of Bioethics.  

Kirsch grew up in rural Saskatchewan and received her MD from the University of Saskatchewan in 2002.  She completed paediatric residency at the Alberta Children’s Hospital, Calgary and paediatric critical care training at Stollery Children’s Hospital, Edmonton. She undertook an additional fellowship in paediatric cardiac critical care in 2008 at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and in 2009 was appointed to staff at CHOP as a Cardiac Intensivist.

While at CHOP, Kirsch took on leadership roles for the Cardiac Simulation Team, the ECMO Operations Committee and the Critical Care Training Committee.  She helped to develop a program of mock cardiac patient emergencies and ECMO simulations across the CHOP cardiac center.  Additionally, she was Course Director for the CICU NP Airway Simulation course and for Cardiac NP Simulation education. She has ongoing interests in simulation as a tool for health-care providers to improve recognition and treatment of acute changes in patient clinical status as well as a tool for enhancing trainee education in bioethics and communication with families.

Kirsch is completing a masters degree in biomedical ethics with an additional certificate in ethics mediation at the University of Pennsylvania. She has been an annual instructor for the University of Pennsylvania bioethics and professionalism course for medical students since 2012. Her academic work focuses on the ethical and social challenges of stopping advanced technologic therapies like ECMO and ventricular assist devices, end of life care, and medical futility. Her interests include improving patient care delivery by enhancing health-care workers’ facility in understanding and dealing with the ethical issues intendant to paediatric critical care and cardiology. She speaks frequently on these topics at national and international conferences.


  1. Kang TI, Santucci G, Rychik J, Kovacs AH, Kirsch RE. Advanced Care Planning for Young Adults and Children With Congenital Heart Disease: A Panel Discussion. World Journal for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery 2013 January; 4:7-9; Supplementary Material. Epub. Senior Responsible Author.
  2. Kirsch RE, Glatz AC, Gaynor JW, Nicolson SC, Spray TL, Wernovsky G, Bird GL.  Results of elective repair at 6 months or younger in 277 patients with Tetralogy of Fallot: A 14-year experience at a single center. The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 2014; 147:713-7. Primary Author.
  3. Chandler HK, Kirsch RE. Management of the low cardiac output syndrome following surgery for congenital heart disease. Current Cardiology Reviews; 2015 Nov 19. [Epub ahead of print]. Co-Author.
  4. McNally EM, Kaltman JR, Benson DW, Canter CE, Cripe LH, Dongsheng D, Finder JD, Hoffman EP, Judge DP, Kertesz N, Kinnett K, Kirsch R, Metzger JM, Pearson GD, Rafael-Fortney JA, Raman SV, Spurney CF, Targum SL, Wagner KR, Markham LW. Contemporary Cardiac Issues in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Circulation 2015;131:1590-1598. Co-Author.
  5. Rossano JW, Hoffman TM, Jefferies JL, Lorts A, Kirsch RE, Thiagarajan RR. Clinical Issues and Controversies in Heart Failure and Transplantation. World Journal for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery; Jan 2016, Vol. 7;(1): 63-71. Co-Author.
  6. Misfeldt AM, Kirsch RE, Goldberg DJ, Mascio CE, Naim MY, Zhang X, Mott AR, Ravishankar C, Rossano JW. Outcomes of Single Ventricle Patients Supported with ECMO. PCCM; 2016 March; 17(3):194-202. Co-Author.

Presented and Published Abstracts:

  1. Kirsch R, Gaynor JW, Pastuszko P, Nicolson SC, Spray TL, Wernovsky G, Bird GL.  Results of elective repair at < 6 months in 277 patients with tetralogy of fallot: 14 years experience at a single center. Poster presentation at Cardiology 2011 – 15th Annual Update on Pediatric Congenital and Cardiovascular Disease, February 2010, Scottsdale, AZ. Principal Author. 
  2. Kirsch R, Goldberg DJ, Naim MY, Mott AR, Rossano JW, Ravishankar C.  Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in Children with Single Ventricle Anomalies: At What Cost? Poster presentation at the 29th Annual CNMC Symposium: ECMO & the Advanced Therapies for Respiratory Failure, February 2013, Denver, CO. Principal Author.