Engaging patients in research every step of the way

November 28, 2018

Patient being consulted on researchCMAJ’s new supplement on engaging patients in health research features commentaries led by Drs. Dean Fergusson, Simon Hatcher and Christian Vaillancourt, as well as 14 other teams affiliated with Ontario’s SPOR SUPPORT Unit (OSSU). As co-Scientific Director of OSSU, Dr. Fergusson’s piece reflects on overall successes and lessons learned.  Dr. Hatcher’s piece reflects on including people with lived experience of suicide in all aspects their project to test a smartphone-assisted therapy for men who present to emergency room with self-harm. Dr. Vaillancourt’s piece explores how patient advisors led his team to measure patient-relevant outcomes like comfort and total time in the emergency department while studying implementing the Canadian C-Spine Rule among paramedics. The Ottawa Hospital is a leader in engaging patients in research, with the Hospital’s Ottawa Methods Centre  designated as the SPOR methods hub for all of Ontario. Ottawa researchers are principal or co-investigators on 80% of the 17 projects featured in CMAJ.

Supplement Co-authors: Zarah Monfaredi, Manya Charette, Elizabeth Hall, Brent McLeod, Sarah MacLean, Craig MacKie.

Quote: “Getting patients involved in every step of the research process can help health research be more responsive to the needs of Canadians.”- Dr. Dean Fergusson, senior scientist at The Ottawa Hospital and professor at the University of Ottawa and co-Scientific Director of the Ontario SPOR Support Unit (OSSU)

Funders: Funding is provided by the Ontario SPOR SUPPORT Unit, which is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Government of Ontario. Research at The Ottawa Hospital is possible because of generous donations to the hospital.

The Ottawa Hospital: Inspired by research. Driven by compassion 

The Ottawa Hospital is one of Canada’s largest learning and research hospitals with over 1,100 beds, approximately 12,000 staff and an annual budget of over $1.2 billion. Our focus on research and learning helps us develop new and innovative ways to treat patients and improve care. As a multi-campus hospital, affiliated with the University of Ottawa, we deliver specialized care to the Eastern Ontario region, but our techniques and research discoveries are adopted around the world. We engage the community at all levels to support our vision for better patient care. See for more information about research at The Ottawa Hospital.

University of Ottawa: —A crossroads of cultures and ideas

The University of Ottawa is home to over 50,000 students, faculty and staff, who live, work and study in both French and English. Our campus is a crossroads of cultures and ideas, where bold minds come together to inspire game-changing ideas. We are one of Canada’s top 10 research universities—our professors and researchers explore new approaches to today’s challenges. One of a handful of Canadian universities ranked among the top 200 in the world, we attract exceptional thinkers and welcome diverse perspectives from across the globe.

Media Contact

Amelia Buchanan
Senior Communication Specialist
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
Office: 613-798-5555 x 73687
Cell: 613-297-8315