Faculty Profile: Dr. Krista Genoway


Dr. Krista Genoway
Clinical Instructor
Division of Plastic Surgery



1) Why did Dr. Genoway pursue a career in medicine?

With an aptitude for science,  Dr. Genoway hoped for a scientific career that would allow her to make a difference in the lives of others.  An initial exposure to health care occurred through involvement in a harm reduction program in Vancouver’s downtown Eastside.  She discovered that patient interactions were most gratifying for her and this prompted her decision to pursue medicine.

2) What was it that attracted her to the area of plastic surgery?

Dr. Genoway has always loved working with her hands and during medical school she was immediately interested in surgery.  She found plastic surgery to be a particularly creative surgical discipline allowing for the ability to change form and function throughout the body in hopes of improving patients’ quality of life.  Dr. Genoway enjoys the collaborative nature of her speciality as she is regularly able to work with physicians from many other specialities. 

3) What does she consider to be the biggest advance in gender affirming surgeries in British Columbia in recent years?

In 2016, the Ministry of Health developed an organization called Trans Care BC which has been an integral part in centralizing and coordinating the delivery of gender affirming surgical care throughout the province. As a result, over the last several years surgical services have expanded and improved, creating a hub and spoke model for health care delivery.

Within VCH Dr. Genoway is excited to be part of the first comprehensive publicly delivered gender affirming lower surgery program in Canada (GSPBC). This program has a focus on delivering excellent surgical care while leading the field through research, innovation and collaboration.

4) In addition to her clinical work, what research is Dr. Genoway involved in at the moment?

 Dr. Genoway is involved in several local and international collaborations. The GSPBC has a full time research coordinator and has received grant funding for interspecialty collaborations within the field of gender affirming care. Some of the specific areas of focus includes; assessing outcomes and patient quality of life following gender affirming surgical care. The program is also focused on identifying techniques and surgical applications that can improve on current surgical standards.

On the side Dr. Genoway is also interested in surgical ergonomics and has been involved in piloting a project within VCH to help improve surgeon posture and OR ergonomics.    

5) No matter what your profession is or where you live in the world, COVID-19 certainly has people reflecting on so many aspects of life. What has changed in Dr. Genoway’s thinking or behaviour that will likely continue when we are on the other side of this pandemic?

Dr. Genoway is very impressed with how quickly the world came together to collaborate – sharing tips, insights and strategies regarding management of this pandemic and how to deliver patient care through this health crisis. She hopes that many of these relationships and avenues for communication will continue for years to come. For her personal practice, this pandemic required her to rapidly adopt telehealth communication for clinical care.   She feels this will have a long-term positive impact on patient care particularly to reach those in remote communities and long-term care homes where transportation to a physical clinic has additional challenges.

6) What brought Dr. Genoway to BC after growing up in Alberta?

She initially moved here to pursue competitive equestrian but, as many do, she was drawn to stay in British Columbia for the beautiful weather and snowless winters.  As well, she met her husband in BC and they have enjoyed their family connections within the province.

7) What is one of her greatest fears?

In the face of the current pandemic and a constantly changing world, Dr. Genoway hopes that her children are afforded the same safety and stability that she enjoyed throughout her childhood.  The COVID pandemic has shed light on the intermittently fragile nature of global health and wellness.  She hopes that new generations understand the importance of health promotion and prevention on both local and global scales.

8) Dr. Genoway has several hobbies – horseback riding, triathlons, travelling and painting to name a few. What has been her focus lately?

With her young family, the focus has been to get active outdoors. They are often found at Sun Peaks whether it be snowshoeing, downhill skiing or skate skiing.

9) Which talent would she most like to have?

Balancing her professional and personal life remains a challenge.  In a perfect world she would have a talent of being able to be in two places at once, always there for patients and family. 

10) When asked if she had anything else to share, what did she say?

She is grateful to work within VCH and share such talented and dedicated colleagues. This has become even more apparent to her during the Covid-19 crisis and she is very proud to be a part of the VCH medical community.