People of KHSC: Dr. Jocelyn Garland

News / Patient & family Centred Care / Renal and Dialysis Care

Portraits of caring, compassion and commitment.

It was love at first rotation for nephrologist Dr. Jocelyn Garland.

“I trained at Western University and nephrology was my first rotation as an intern just out of medical school. I don’t know there was just something about nephrology. Everything I did after that first rotation didn’t really compare,” recalled Dr. Garland.

Fast forward to 2022, and her passion for treating patients with kidney disease is still going strong.

In fact, she’s the medical director of Kingston Health Sciences Centre’s Specialized Kidney Disease clinic.

Part of the Ontario Renal Network, it’s one of only six specialized glomerulonephritis clinics in the province, and one of five clinics specialized to care for pregnant patients who have kidney disease.

“What I deal with is mainly very rare kidney diseases and trying to treat those, and prevent patients from progressing to kidney failure. Once there’s kidney failure the options include dialysis and possibly a kidney transplantation.

“We investigate some of the rarer causes of kidney problems, along with specific diagnoses and potentially targeted treatments to try to prevent dialysis or need for a transplant. It’s really about early detection and therapies. There’s a lot of problem solving because it’s never the same approach, it’s similar but no two patients are the same in terms of how they’re treated.”

Her dedication to her specialty is just one of the reasons why she was awarded the 2022 Distinguished Clinical Service Award from the American Society of Nephrology.

“Receiving such an honour is definitely validation for the work I do, but that’s not why I’m in this field. We’re just focused on our patients and making sure people get the best possible care.”

The modest physician adds it takes a village to provide high quality care.

“I work with a great nephrology team comprised of nurses, dietitians, social workers, pharmacists and many others. All of us work together and meet on a weekly basis to discuss the patients coming to the clinic, and what we need to do to best serve them.

“I also work collaboratively with many other sub-specialists including pregnancy specialists because kidney disease can also impact all other organs. The care is very much a multi-disciplinary approach, and it has to be for these rare diseases. The team I work with is invaluable.

“And I certainly couldn’t be where I am today, without my family. They give me a lot of support which allows me to do the work I do.”