Dona Suinita Swarna Weerasinghe
Dona Suinita Swarna Weerasinghe
Associate professor

Department of Community Health & Epidemiology
Dalhousie University


  • Ph.D., Statistics, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada,
  • M.Sc., Applied Statistics, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka (Linked with Reading University, London, U.K.)
  • Post Graduate, Applied Statistics, Diploma, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka (Linked with the Reading University, London, U.K.),     
  • B.Sc, Major in Statistics, (Honors Minor in Medical Anthropology First Class) University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka.
  • Full term courses, Human genetics 4570.03   Math/Stat, Dalhousie University, Qualitative methods, CHE 6045 B, Dalhousie University
  • Knowledge Discovery and Data mining, BUSI 6522.03, Dalhousie University, Issues in Health and Illness SASA 5006A, Dalhousie University




Research Interest

Areas of research 

  • Network analyses, Bioinformatics, Consumer health information exchange and data analytics.
  • Development and use of statistical methods for: Modeling environmental data; Longitudinal Data Analysis; Stochastic Modeling and Time series analyses.
  • Analysis of secondary data: Population Health Surveys and Clinical Trials data, Geographical and time series analyses of disease incidence and prevalence data.
  • Access to healthcare and health outcomes of vulnerable populations


Professional Activities:


2007 July –Present. Associate professor Department of Community Health & Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University
1994 July -2007 June Assistant Professor (tenured, July 1, 2000) Department of Community Health & Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University
1992 July – 1994 June Lecturer/Biostatistician Delivered lectures to medical students, graded their papers, wrote cases, carried out assessments and developed CHE masters degree biostatistics curriculum, Department of Community Health & Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University

Other duties:

2013 July-2015 September Component Head Procomp 2 – MSK/DERM
1994 July – 2009 July Director (part-time) Biostatistical consulting unit, Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie university
1994 September-1995 June Co-Unit Head Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics Unit, Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, Dalhousie University
1990 September -1992 August Lecturer (Part time) Dept. of Mathematics, Statistics and Computing Science, Dalhousie University
1989 September -1991August Instructor (Part Time) Dept. of Mathematics, Statistics and Computing Science, Dalhousie University
1985 September -1989 August Teaching Assistant Dept. of Mathematics, Statistics and Computing Science, Dalhousie University



  1. Swarna Weerasinghe, (2012) "Inequities in visible minority Immigrant Women's Healthcare accessibility", Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care, Vol. 5 Iss: 1, pp.18 – 28.
  2. Weerasinghe, S. Multi pollutant models for three Canadian sites: Age and gender based ecological relationships with asthma hospital admissions, Journal of Environmental Protection, Accepted, April 6, 2012.
  3. Rasic, D. Weerasinghe, S. Asbridge, M. and Langille, D. (2013), “Longitudinal association of cannabis and illicit drug use with depression, suicidal ideation and suicidal attempts among Nova Scotia high school students”, Drug and Alcohol Dependence, vol 129, issue 1, 49-53.
  4. Wojtowicz, M. Weerasinghe, S. Stadnyk, K. Bhan, V. Fisk J.D. “Longitudinal relations in neurologic disability and health-related quality of life in multiple sclerosis.” 5th Joint Triennial Congress of the European and Americas Committees for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, October 19-22, 2011. Multiple Sclerosis Journal, 2011; 17(Suppl 10): S309-310.
  5. Weerasinghe, S. & Numer, M. Healthy lifestyle behaviours of widowed South Asian Immigrant women in Canada: A life course exploration through a cultural gender lens, International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, Volume 6 Issue 4 December 2010, 42-56.
  6. Ghiabi, E & Weerasinghe, S. , The Periodontal Examination Profile of General Dentists in Nova Scotia, Canada, Journal of Periodontology, accepted June 28, 2010.
  7. Etowa, J., Weerasinghe, S. & Eghan, F. Maternal Health Care Challenges within African Immigrant Communities; Journal of  US-China Public Administration, ISSN 1548-6591, USA. May. 2010, Volume 7, No.5 (Serial No.55), 30-40.
  8. Weerasinghe, S. (2010).  A missing values imputation method for time series data: an efficient method to investigate the health effects of sulfur dioxide levels, Environmetrics, 21, 162-172
  9. Asbrige, M. & Weerasinghe, S. (2009). Homicide in Chicago from 1890 to 1930: prohibition and its impact on alcohol- and non-alcohol-related homicides. Addiction, 104, 355–364, 
  10. Weerasinghe S & Mitchell T. Connection between Meaning of Health and Interaction with Health Professionals: Caring Immigrant Women. Health Care for Women International 2007 April;28(4):309-28.
  11. Oxman-Martinez J, Hanley L, Lach L, Khanlou N, Weerasinghe S, & Agnew V. Intersection of Canadian Policy Parameters affecting Women with Precarious Immigration Status: a Baseline for Understanding Barriers to Health. Journal of Immigrant Health, 2005 Oct;7(4):247-258.
  12. Wong J, Wong S, Weerasinghe S, Makrides L, Coward-Ince T. Building community partnership for diabetes primary prevention: Lessons learned. Clinical Governance, An International Journal, Vol.10, No.1, 2005@Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 6-14.
  13. Webster D, Weerasinghe S, and Stevens P. Morbidity and Mortality Rates in a Nova Scotia First Nations Community, 1996-1999. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 2004;95(5):369-374.
  14. Campbell CA, Cooke CA, Weerasinghe S, Sketris I.S, McLean-Veysey PR, Skedgel CD. Topical Corticosteroid Prescribing Patterns Following Changes in Drug Benefit Status. The Annals of Pharmacotherapy, 2003;37:787-93.
  15. Wong S, Wong J, Makrides L, and Weerasinghe S.  A conceptual model for a culturally responsive community-based diabetes prevention program. International Journal of Health Care Quality assurance Incorporating Leadership in Health Services, 2002;15(5): 
  16. Mendez I, Dagher A, Hong M, Gaudet P, Weerasinghe S, Simultaneous Intrastriatal and Intranigral Fetal Dopaminergic Grafts in Patients with Parkinson’s Disease. Journal of Neurosurgery, 2002;96:589-596. 
  17. MacCara M, Sketris I, Comeau D, Weerasinghe S, Impact of a limited Fluroquinolone Reimbursement Policy on Antimicrobial Prescription Claims. The Annals of Pharmacotherapy, 2001(July/August);35(7-8):852-8.  
  18. Mendez I, Weerasinghe S, An Enhancement of survival of stored dopaminergic cell exposed to human fetal nigral tissue to glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor and promotion of graft survival in two patients with Parkinson’s disease. Journal of Neurosurgery, 2000; 92:863-869.
  19. Hazzan A, Norman R, Thompson C, Weerasinghe S. Dietary Habits of Idiopathic Calcium Stoneformers compared with Normal Controls. British Journal of Urology, 2000; 85:616-620.
  20. Guernsey, J.G., Dewer, R., Weerasinghe, S., Kirkland,S., Incidence of Cancer in Sydney and Cape Breton County, Nova Scotia 1979-1997. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 2000; July:285-292.
  21. Hanley JH, Mosher D, Weerasinghe S, Sutton E, Theriault D. Self-Assessment of Disease Activity  By Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis The Journal of Rheumatology, 1996; June:1531-1537.


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