Connections >> April 2015

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Latest MSFHR News


A guide to MSFHR's new strategic plan

MSFHR recently completed and published a new strategic plan outlining our directions and priorities for the next five years.

At the core of this plan are three goals — People, Responsiveness and Coherence — which guide our work and help us maintain a balance between building capacity for health research and supporting the application of research to address priority issues.

To help explain the importance of these goals, as well as the actions supporting them, we have prepared a handy reference complete with video commentary from our President & CEO Dr. Diane Finegood.

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Profile: Dr. Adeera Levin, 2015 Aubrey J. Tingle Prize

As an undergraduate studying anthropology and philosophy at the University of Toronto, Adeera Levin was drawn to medicine by the opportunity to ask and answer questions about the intricacies of the human body.

That inquisitive spirit set her on a path she still follows today as a world-renowned nephrologist. Levin's ability to ask and answer key questions about kidney disease has driven forward our knowledge of this condition and earned her numerous awards and recognitions, including the 2015 Aubrey J. Tingle Prize.

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New website, workshop highlight busy month of KT activities

MSFHR's knowledge translation team has been hard at work this month to expand the range of KT resources and training opportunities available to BC researchers.

We recently supported the development of a website for the BC Knowledge Translation Community of Practice that will build connections between KT researchers, practitioners, and those with an interest in KT. For registered members, the site offers KT resources, as well as tools for sharing events, jobs, and volunteer opportunities. Membership is free and open to all backgrounds and levels of experience. Read more.

MSFHR also recently partnered with Providence Health Care to bring the popular Scientist Knowledge Translation Training (SKTT ™) workshop back to Vancouver. The two-day workshop brought together 28 participants, split evenly between researchers and clinicians, to develop the skills and networks required to effectively communicate research to non-academic audiences. Read more.

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Partnership fosters "synergistic" research collaboration

MFSHR and AllerGen NCE have been working as partners since 2011 to co-fund positions in BC for research in asthma, anaphylaxis and allergies.

One such project supported Dr. Jeremy Hirota to work at St. Paul's Hospital and Vancouver General Hospital in Dr. Christopher Carlsten's lab, a world leader in clinical and epidemiological research on the impact of environmental and occupational exposures on lung health and disease.

Hirota notes that his professional development under the partnered award opened the door to receiving a Banting Fellowship that is allowing him to continue his work in asthma research at UBC. He and Carlsten have since consolidated their research programs and are working together as co-directors of the Chan-Yeung Centre for Occupational and Environmental Respiratory Disease.

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Shaping the future of health research in BC

It is an exciting time for health research in British Columbia. MSFHR is pleased to be involved in several initiatives that are shaping health research in this province going forward.

Thanks to a collaborative effort on the part of many organizations, BC is laying the foundation for a strong, vibrant health research environment that will use research to address priority health challenges and improve the health of British Columbians.

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BC SUPPORT Unit start-up activities underway

Following CIHR approval in March of start-up funding for the BC SUPPORT Unit and CIHR feedback on the unit's business plan, several start-up activities are underway:

  • Steps are being taken following the unit's Interim Governing Council (IGC) meeting on March 19 to formally respond to the CIHR feedback on the unit's business plan and to begin start-up operations.
  • The unit will be reaching out to all stakeholders in the weeks to come to discuss how they can work together toward ongoing operations.
  • Members of the Interim Operations Team have been recruited to work on a part-time basis during the start-up phase.

Subscribe to the BC SUPPORT Unit's mailing list to receive monthly updates on the unit's start-up phase

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Trainee competition update

The deadline to submit full applications for our 2015 Trainee Award competition has now passed (we received a total of 232 applications), and we would like to remind applicants of the next steps.

  • MSFHR Research Programs staff are approving applications and creating the peer-review task for panel members in MSFHR ApplyNet.
  • Panel members will declare their conflicts of interest and have the option of selecting applications to review based on their expertise.
  • Panel meetings are scheduled for late May/early June.
  • 59 panel members have been recruited from around BC and across Canada (including Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg and Lethbridge).

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MSFHR People

BC's health research community was well represented in the recent announcement of Canada Research Chairs.

A total of 27 new or renewed chairs were awarded to BC, with health researchers accounting for more than half of these positions. The total value of BC's chairs is more than $25 million.

MSFHR congratulates all recipients, with special acknowledgement of the following researchers we have proudly worked with or supported at various stages of their careers:

  • Christopher Carlsten (2011 Scholar)
  • Jennifer Gardy (2004, 2006 Trainee; Research Advisory Council member)
  • Michael Hayden (2003 Research Unit Award; 2011 Aubrey J. Tingle Prize; former board member)
  • Michael Law (2011 Scholar)
  • Gina Ogilvie (HPV vaccine evaluation project)
  • Christopher Overall (Technology/Methodology Platform Award)
  • Margot Parkes (Research Advisory Council member)
  • Martin Schechter (Chief Scientific Officer)
  • Jon Stoessl (2006 Research Unit Award)
  • Janet Werker (former Research Advisory Council chair)

A complete list of Canada Research Chairs is available here.

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