Connections >> September 2014

17 September 2014

Connections is MSFHR’s monthly e-newsletter. Each issue highlights the top MSFHR news from the past month and showcases the impact of research we’ve funded.

In this issue:



Career Opportunities

B.C. government provides $11 million for health research

Patients and researchers will benefit from a new $11-million grant from the provincial government to the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (MSFHR).

“This funding will help the Foundation maintain the global competitiveness of B.C.’s health research sector,” said Health Minister Terry Lake. “The Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research helps support solutions to our more pressing health problems by funding the best and brightest researchers and spearheading significant projects to address health system priorities.”

In July, the Foundation awarded 32 leaders in health research with MSFHR Scholar Awards totalling up to $11.2 million over five years. These awards, a flagship program for MSFHR, have a proven impact on health research in B.C. Since 2001, MSFHR Scholars have attracted more than $1.1 billion in additional investments to B.C.’s research community and trained more than 4,700 apprentices.

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MSFHR partners on $31.5M national dementia research initiative

MSFHR is proud to partner on a new national initiative that will tackle the growing prevalence of dementia and related illnesses, including Alzheimer’s disease.

The Canadian Consortium on Neurodegeneration in Aging (CCNA), announced September 10 by federal health minister Rona Ambrose, brings together 20 research teams and experts from across Canada to focus on preventing and delaying the onset of dementia as well as improving the quality of life for Canadians affected by these illnesses.

The initiative is supported by a national partnership between the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and 13 organizations from the public and private sectors, including MSFHR. Total funding of $31.5 million over five years has been committed by the Government of Canada and the partner organizations.

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Report highlights best practices in seniors’ home care

Evidence-based lessons and objectives for improving B.C. seniors’ home care are outlined in a new report that summarizes best practices from around the world.

The report synthesizes findings from an international forum on home care convened in January by MSFHR and the B.C. Ministry of Health. Six international experts were invited to Vancouver to speak about home care practice in their respective countries, offering an important opportunity for BC policy-makers and researchers to learn how other jurisdictions are providing sustainable home care for seniors.

All presentations and subsequent discussions are summarized in the report, which is available for download.

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New website supports ethics harmonization

A new website that will act as the primary portal for news, resources, and information about the BC Ethics Harmonization Initiative is now available at

The launch of this website is an important step for BCEHI. It will support public communication about the initiative and provide resources to help researchers, research ethics board administrators, and reviewers understand and implement harmonized approaches to ethics review.

MSFHR is actively working with BCEHI’s partner organizations to facilitate the development and implementation of harmonized ethics review models for research involving human subjects. A harmonized ethics review model for minimal-risk studies has been endorsed by the partner organizations’ senior leadership for pilot implementation and evaluation over six months, starting in October.

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MSFHR supports upcoming conferences

MSFHR is pleased to support two events in September that will advance dialogue on health and health research.

  • Connect 2014
    September 22
    Coast Plaza Hotel & Suites, Vancouver

    InspireNet’s fifth annual fall conference is focused on the challenges and opportunities in using research to improve health care. All researchers, clinicians, policy-makers, students/trainees, and individuals with an interest in health services research are encouraged to attend. Speakers include MSFHR’s Diane Finegood (president & CEO), Bev Holmes (vice-president, research & impact), and Lori Last (director, communications).
  • Interface 2014
    September 29-30
    Vancouver Convention Centre West

    Interface is the only digital health international summit in Canada that brings together health, technology, design, social media, and business. Speakers will include leading experts, innovators, and creative thinkers on the future of health, including MSFHR President & CEO Diane Finegood. Connections readers can save $100 by using the code MSFHR14 before September 26.

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Career opportunities

Evaluation Lead

MSFHR is seeking an Evaluation Lead (permanent, full-time) to join our Impact Analysis team.

You are passionate about the value and power of evaluation. Reporting to the Director, Impact Analysis, your primary responsibility is to implement the new organizational evaluation strategy.

Deadline: September 28, 2014

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