Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Max Rady College of Medicine, University of Manitoba.

Research achievements

Research summary

Dr. El-Gabalawy’s research program examines:

  1. Mental health correlates of adverse health events (medical trauma), and common psychological outcomes following such events. For example, she is interested in understanding psychological sequelae (e.g., post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), delirium) of a life threatening illness, major surgery and associated complications, admission to the intensive care unit, and COVID-19.
  2. Feasible interventions to improve health outcomes in adverse health events. Developing targeted interventions aimed at reducing negative psychological experiences following adverse health events. She is particularly interested in medical technologies such as virtual reality.
  3. Understanding the impact of anxiety and trauma-related disorders on physical health and chronic pain. These investigations include understanding co-occurrence, mechanisms, and correlates/outcomes of co-occurring conditions.


  • medical trauma
  • mental and physical health comorbidity
  • perioperative mental health
  • posttraumatic stress disorder
  • psychiatric epidemiology

Research affiliations

Adjunct scientist:

  • CancerCare Manitoba

Adjunct associate professor:

  • Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, University of Manitoba
  • Department of Psychiatry, Max Rady College of Medicine, University of Manitoba

Research groups


Renée El-Gabalawy is an associate professor in the departments of clinical health psychology and anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine in the Max Rady College of Medicine at the University of Manitoba (UM). She also holds adjunct appointments in the Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology (Fort Garry), and is an adjunct scientist at CancerCare Manitoba. She is also a clinical psychologist for Shared Health with a specialization in health psychology. Her practice focuses on medical trauma. Dr. El-Gabalawy is the Director of the multidisciplinary Health, Anxiety and Trauma Laboratory (HATLab). She supervises undergraduate and graduate students, BSc(Med) students, and medical residents.

As a Vanier Scholar, she received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from UM in 2015. She also completed a predoctoral research fellowship supported by a CIHR Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement at Yale University in 2013. Before joining the faculty at UM in 2015, Dr. El-Gabalawy completed her clinical psychology residency at the Medical University of South Carolina (Charleston Consortium) with a behavioural medicine and civilian trauma clinical emphasis.

She has been successful at obtaining millions of dollars of funding locally and nationally as both co- and principal investigator. She has over 100 peer reviewed journal publications and book chapters, and has presented research findings in over 150 local, national and international conference proceedings.

Dr. El-Gabalawy is also a co-investigator and the Clinical Research Network Director of the Chronic Pain SPOR Network at UM.


PhD in Clinical Psychology from the University of Manitoba, Canada (Canadian Psychological Association Accredited), 2010-2015

Clinical Psychology Residency (Behavioural Medicine Emphasis) at the Medical University of South Carolina and Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center Charleston Consortium Internship Training program (American Psychological Association Accredited), 2014-2015

Predoctoral Research Fellow at Yale University School of Medicine, USA, funded through Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement, 2013

Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology from the University of Manitoba, Canada, 2009-2010

Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Psychology from the University of Manitoba, Canada, 2003-2008



  • Aubie Angel Young Investigator Award in Clinical Research


  • Psychology Internship Clinical Excellence Award, Charleston Consortium, Medical University of South Carolina


  • Career Development Award, Anxiety and Depression Association of America


  • Graduate Studentship, Manitoba Health Research Council


  • Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement, Canada Graduate Scholarship
  • Dean of Graduate Studies Student Achievement Award
  • Vineberg Research Award, Department of Psychology, University of Manitoba


  • Alumni Psychology Student Research Award, Department of Psychology, University of Manitoba
  • Certificate of Academic Excellence, Canadian Psychological Association
  • Brain Star Award, Canadian Institutes of Health Research


  • Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship
  • Centre on Aging Jack MacDonell Scholarship for Research In Aging, University of Manitoba
  • Centre of Aging Esther and Samuel Milmot Scholarship, University of Manitoba
  • Manitoba Graduate Scholarship, University of Manitoba
  • Graduate Research Award, Statistics Canada Research Data Centre


Renée El-Gabalawy In the news

Contact us

Clinical Health Psychology
PZ350-771 Bannatyne Avenue
University of Manitoba, Bannatyne Campus
Winnipeg, MB R3E 3N4 Canada