Dr. Ayal Schaffer (MD, FRCPC) is Head of the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program, and Deputy Psychiatrist-in-Chief, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Canada. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, and Vice President Education for the International Society for Bipolar Disorders.
Dr. Schaffer’s research interests involve the management of bipolar disorder, understanding suicide risk and prevention in bipolar disorder, and examining population-health trends in mood disorders and suicide. Dr. Schaffer has been a principal or co-investigator of studies funded by the Ontario Mental Health Foundation, Canadian Institute of Health Research, National Institute of Mental Health (U.S.), Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, PSI Foundation, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the Stanley Medical Research Institute, and others, and has authored over 80 peer-reviewed articles and chapters. His awards include a New Investigator Fellowship from the Ontario Mental Health Foundation and the John Dewan Prize presented in recognition of outstanding research in the field of mental health.
Dr. Schaffer is Chair of the International Society for Bipolar Disorders Task Force on Suicide, and serves on the ISBD Executive as VP Education. He co-authored the CANMAT / ISBD Guidelines for the Management of Bipolar Disorder as well as co-leading the CANMAT Task Force on Comorbidity in Mood Disorders. He has an outpatient and inpatient clinical practice focused on bipolar disorder and treatment-resistant depression. Dr. Schaffer is a strong advocate of quality improvement in mental health, and is Chair of Sunnybrook Department of Psychiatry Quality Improvement Committee. He is actively involved in teaching at the undergraduate, postgraduate, and continuing educations levels, and has received awards in each of these areas.