Jerusha Ellis is an Education Specialist and Medical Illustrator with the de Souza Institute at the University Health Network (UHN) in Toronto. At the de Souza Institute, Jerusha is part of the team that creates online continuing education courses in oncology and palliative care, as well as patient education websites.

Before working at UHN, Jerusha worked as a teaching assistant in the human anatomy course at the Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCADU), leading joint movement and surface anatomy tutorials with life models and assisting with anatomy prosection labs at the University of Toronto.

Jerusha is a trained medical illustrator. She holds a master’s degree in Biomedical Communications (MScBMC) from the University of Toronto where her master’s research project was the design of illustrated patient education booklet about mental health services targeted at women living with HIV in Ontario.

Jerusha has collaborated with oncologists, psychiatrists, surgeons, oncology nurses, social workers, and patients in the development of illustrated educational resources. She designs her illustrations and educational media with the audience’s educational needs at the forefront, whether it be health care professionals, students, patients, or a general audience. She has training in plain language medical writing for patients, and in researching best practices in education for her target audience.

Jerusha Ellis is a member of the Association of Medical Illustrators, and is a Certified Medical Illustrator (CMI).

Conference Presentations



Convergence Healthcare Education Conference, Michener Institute (Virtual Conference)

“Designing Meaningful Visuals for eLearning”  1-hour Workshop with Dr. Jiahui Wong, PhD



Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Conference (Virtual Conference)

“Enhancing Clinical Reasoning in Palliative Care education: Designing simulated case scenarios for online self-study course in palliative care”  Slide presentation with Dr. Jiahui Wong, PhD and Cathy Kiteley, APN, RN, MScN, CON(C), CHPCN(C)



Convergence Healthcare Education Conference, Michener Institute (Virtual Conference)

“Designing Meaningful Clinical Scenario Questions for eLearning” Slide presentation with Komal Patel, RN(EC), MN, CON(C), CHPCN(C), GNC(C)



Ontario Health Literacy Symposium, Toronto ON.

“Patient Teaching for Oral Chemotherapy and Biotherapy: The creation and evaluation of two companion online resources for healthcare providers and patients” Slide presentation with Dr. Jiahui Wong, PhD.



Casey House Fall Symposium: HIV/AIDS and Health Care, Toronto, ON.

“Taking Care of My Body and Mind – a guide to mental health services for women living with HIV ” Slide presentation with Dr. Julie Maggi, MSc, MD



Association of Medical Illustrators (AMI) Annual Meeting, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.

“Taking Care of My Body and Mind – a guide to mental health services for women living with HIV ”  Poster Presentation.



American Journal of Hospice & Palliative Medicine

Leung YW, Wong J, Kiteley C, Ellis J, Esplen MJ. Addressing Educational Needs in Managing Complex Pain in Cancer Populations: Evaluation of APAM: An Online Educational Intervention for Nurses. Am J Hosp Palliat Care. 2019 Jul;36(7):587-597. doi: 10.1177/1049909119832819. Epub 2019 Feb 27. PMID: 30813737.

Continuing Education


Certificate in Plain Language for Patient/Public Health Communication

The Michener Institute of Education at UHN, Toronto, ON


What is a Certified Medical Illustrator (CMI)?

The board certification program for Medical Illustrators consists of a written test, practicum, and rigorous portfolio review to measure professional competence in biomedical science and drawing skills. Board certification is endorsed by the Association of Medical Illustrators to encourage life-long learning and professional competence.


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