Menaka Pai

Dr. Menaka Pai is a Canadian hematologist and thrombosis medicine physician in Ontario, Canada. She is notable in the COVID-19 pandemic for her role on the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table.

Education

Dr. Pai completed her medical training at McMaster University and the University of Toronto. She holds a Masters degree in Health Research Methodology from McMaster University.1)

Affiliations

American Society of Hematology

Pai is Chair of the American Society of Hematology’s Guideline Oversight Subcommittee.2)

Hamilton Health Sciences

Pai is a hematologist and thrombosis medicine physician, Head of Service for Benign Hematology at Hamilton Health Sciences, and Quality Lead for Transfusion Medicine in the Hamilton Regional Laboratory Medicine Program.3)

In her role at HHS, Pai acted as a Local Principal Investigator for the “CONvalescent Plasma for Hospitalized Adults With COVID-19 Respiratory Illness” (CONCOR-1) study, funded by Canadian Blood Services, Héma-Québec, University of Toronto (Toronto COVID-19 Action Initiative 2020), Université de Montréal, Canadian Institutes of Health Research COVID-19 May 2020 Rapid Research Funding Opportunity, Ontario COVID-19 Rapid Research Fund, Fondation du CHU Ste-Justine, Ministère de l’Économie et de l’Innovation du Québec, Fonds de Recherche du Québec, University Health Network Emergent Access Innovation Fund, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (University Health Academic Health Science Centre Alternative Funding Plan; Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Foundation), Saskatchewan Ministry of Health, University of Alberta Hospital Foundation, Alberta Health Services COVID-19 Foundation Competition, Fondation du CHUM, Ottawa Hospital Academic Medical Organization, Ottawa Hospital Foundation COVID-19 Research Fund, Sinai Health System Foundation, and McMaster University.4)

International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis

Pai received funding through McMaster University from the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) to publish a Guideline on Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (TTP).5) 6) 7)

McMaster University

Pai is an Associate Professor of Medicine at McMaster University, specializing in Hematology & Thromboembolism.8) 9) She was a speaker on the topic of COVID-19 and thrombosis at the McMaster International Review Course in Internal Medicine event in 2021.10) 11) She is also a member of the McMaster Centre for Transfusion Research (MCTR).12)

Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table

Pai is a member of the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table and Co-Chair of the Drugs & Biologics Clinical Practice Guidelines Working Group.13)

Scripps Health

Pai was an invited speaker at the 2020 Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center‘s Clinical Hematology and Oncology Conference, where she spoke about thrombosis in intensive care patients.14) 15)

Thrombosis and Atherosclerosis Research Institute

Thrombosis Canada

Pai was paid by Thrombosis Canada to develop an “online thrombophilia educational tool.”17) She also participated on the Planning Committee of a November 2015 event for TC and McMaster University called “Thrombosis Practice Pearls”, which was sponsored by Bayer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Pfizer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Sanofi, AstraZeneca, LEO Pharma, Medtronic, and Octapharma.18)

Wolters Kluwer

Pai co-authors articles pertaining to prophylaxis of venous thromboembolism for UpToDate, an online medical textbook published by Wolters Kluwer.19) 20)

Relationships with Pharmaceutical Companies

Pai received payment from Novartis for presentation of Medical Grand Rounds at Bluewater Health on September 11, 2019.21) 22) She has also received speakers bureau/honoraria funds from Bayer,23) and has attended at least one advisory committee meeting for Pfizer.24) 25)

Her payments from Pfizer and Novartis are also described as “personal fees” in her conflict of interest disclosure for a study discussing vaccine-induced thrombocytopenia following COVID-19 vaccination.26)

Pai held shares in Medtronic worth $813.00 USD as of June 6, 2020, which she divested on June 8, 2020. Her husband held Medtronic shares worth $16,300.00 USD as of June 6, 2020, which had not been divested at the time of her disclosure to the American Society of Hematology.27) 28)

Media

Pandemic Politics

Pai shared a Tweet stating “OMG there is no food shortage… we're just so accustomed to abundance we're not used to seeing even the occasional empty shelf. You know what there IS a shortage of? CLEAN WATER in so many First Nations communities. Which-unlike eating in a restaurant- actually is a human right,” in protest against the Freedom Convoy 2022 and related food shortages resulting from COVID-19 related supply chain interruptions.29)

She also indicated support for Neil Young after he presented an ultimatum to Spotify, demanding they remove the Joe Rogan Experience from their platform due to frequent alleged “misinformation” following viral interviews with Robert Malone and Peter McCullough.30) 31)

COVID-19 Vaccines

In an April 2021 article, Pai insisted that the benefits of the Oxford-AstraZeneca ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 COVID-19 vaccine product outweighed the risk of vaccine-induced thrombocytopenia (VITT), arguing that every decision carries risk. She argues that the risk of blood clotting resulting from COVID-19 infection is higher than from the injection.32)

In November 2021, she advocated strongly for 5-11 year olds to receive a COVID-19 injection. She described it as “the socially responsible thing to do,” claiming that it's a matter of “getting vaccinated” to protect each other - despite the fact that by the time of publication, it was a matter of common knowledge and robust scientific consensus that none of the available products effectively prevent or reduce community transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 pathogen.33) 34) 35) 36) 37) She described the products as “safe and effective”.38)

She also insinuated COVID-19 is a “vaccine-preventable disease”, which the Government of Canada itself refutes.39)

In a January 12, 2022 article for McMaster's “Business and Economy” blog, she expressed that “we are slowly (too slowly) vaccinating the world, which will ultimately ensure that the virus is kept in check.”40)

1) , 3) , 13)
About Us. Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://covid19-sciencetable.ca/about/#pai-menaka
2) , 8)
Menaka Pai - McMaster Experts. McMaster University. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/QCpdm
4)
Bégin, P., Callum, J., Jamula, E., Cook, R., Heddle, N. M., Tinmouth, A., Zeller, M. P., Beaudoin-Bussières, G., Amorim, L., Bazin, R., Loftsgard, K. C., Carl, R., Chassé, M., Cushing, M. M., Daneman, N., Devine, D. V., Dumaresq, J., Fergusson, D. A., Gabe, C., Glesby, M. J., … Arnold, D. M. (2021). Convalescent plasma for hospitalized patients with COVID-19: an open-label, randomized controlled trial. Nature medicine, 27(11), 2012–2024. https://archive.ph/5vlNR
5)
Krolak, B. (2018, April 25). ISTH Partners with McMaster University to Publish a Guideline on Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura. International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis. https://archive.ph/XsK2Q
6) , 23)
Pai, M. (2020, June). Anemia and Heavy Menstrual Bleeding. Ontario Regional Blood Coordinating Network. https://transfusionontario.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Anemia-and-Heavy-Menstrual-Bleeding.pdf
7)
Zheng, X., Vesely, S., Cataland, S., Coppo, P., Geldziler, B., Iorio, A., Matsumoto, M., Mustafa, R., Pai, M., Rock, G., Russell, L., Tarawneh, R., Valdes, J., & Peyvandi, F. (2020). ISTH guidelines for the diagnosis of thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. J Thromb Haemost, 18(10), 2486–2495. https://doi.org/10.1111/jth.15006
9) , 29)
Menaka Pai, MSc MD FRCPC (@MPaiMD). Assoc Professor Hematology & Thromboembolism @McMasterU @HamHealthSci Bleeds, clots, transfusion, quality, guidelines, equity Wife, mom of 2 little boys [Profile]. Twitter. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/LYMPv
10)
MIRCIM: McMaster International Review Course in Internal Medicine. (2021, June 14). Prof. Menaka Pai invitation. Facebook. https://web.archive.org/web/20220127200510/https://www.facebook.com/MIRCIMcourse/videos/155770989922716/
11)
Speakers - Prof. Menaka Pai. Empendium. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/Dp34T
12)
McMaster Centre for Transfusion Research. Contact Us. McMaster University. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/lK4EP
16)
Menaka Pai. TAARI. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/i4iuJ
20)
Patient education: Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) (Beyond the Basics). UpToDate. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/P6A1N
22) , 28)
Supplement 4: Disclosure of Interest Forms for Panelists. (2021, February 9). https://ia601504.us.archive.org/9/items/advancesADV2020003763C-suppl5/advancesADV2020003763C-suppl4.pdf
25)
Contributor disclosures. UpToDate. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://archive.ph/6XqtC
26)
Klok, F. A., Pai, M., Huisman, M. V., & Makris, M. (2021). Vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia. The Lancet Haematology. https://doi.org/10.1016/s2352-3026(21)00306-9
27)
Cuker, A., Tseng, E. K., Nieuwlaat, R., Angchaisuksiri, P., Blair, C., Dane, K., Davila, J., DeSancho, M. T., Diuguid, D., Griffin, D. O., Kahn, S. R., Klok, F. A., Lee, A. I., Neumann, I., Pai, A., Pai, M., Righini, M., Sanfilippo, K. M., Siegal, D., Skara, M., … Schünemann, H. J. (2021). American Society of Hematology 2021 guidelines on the use of anticoagulation for thromboprophylaxis in patients with COVID-19. Blood advances, 5(3), 872–888. https://doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020003763
30)
The Joe Rogan Experience. (2021, December 13). #1747 - Dr. Peter A. McCullough. Spotify. https://archive.ph/tTyEu
31)
The Joe Rogan Experience. (2021, December 31). #1757 - Dr. Robert Malone, MD. Spotify. https://archive.ph/F5N5X
32)
Vohra-Miller, S. (2021, April 19). Understanding the blood clot issue behind the AstraZeneca vaccine and its safety. Hamilton Health Sciences. https://archive.ph/RsHWn
33)
Mallapaty, S. (2021). COVID vaccines cut the risk of transmitting Delta — but not for long. Nature. https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-021-02689-y
34)
‫חיסון‬ ‫קבלת‬ ‫לאחר‬ ‫מאומתים‬ ‫קב‬ ‫בקרב‬ ’ ‫הראשונים‬ ‫המחוסנים‬. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://www.gov.il/BlobFolder/reports/vaccine-efficacy-safety-follow-up-committee/he/files_publications_corona_two-dose-vaccination-data.pdf
35)
Callaway, E. (2021). COVID vaccine boosters: the most important questions. Nature, 596(7871), 178–180. https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-021-02158-6
36)
Hains, T. (2021, August 6). CDC Director: Vaccines No Longer Prevent You From Spreading COVID. Real Clear Politics. https://archive.ph/EducC
37)
The Deprogram. (2021, August 8). CDC Director Rochelle Walensky tells Wolf Blitzer that COVID Vaccines won’t prevent transmission. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKFWGvvlVLI
38)
Altruism, empathy and COVID vaccines for kids. (2021, November 22). Hamilton Health Sciences. https://archive.ph/YR3lL
39)
Public Health Agency of Canada. (2021, July 22). Diseases and conditions. Government of Canada. https://web.archive.org/web/20211104163241/https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases.html?vaccine-preventable
40)
McMaster experts on key themes shaping our world in 2022. (2022, January 12). Brighter World; McMaster University. https://archive.ph/SwMSj
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