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SHRF and partners invest over $2M in timely research to address SK's health challenges

Updated: Oct 20, 2023

Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF) and our partners are proud to announce over $2 million in funding toward Saskatchewan research teams working to address the province's most pressing health challenges.


"SHRF is dedicated to supporting a health research ecosystem that encourages collaborative and timely work. The Solutions Program exemplifies these commitments clearly. Projects funded through the 2022-23 Solutions Program are leading examples of how innovative and interdisciplinary research stands to positively impact the health and healthcare of Saskatchewan. I extend my congratulations to this year's funding recipients, and look forward to the outcomes of their work." - Patrick Odnokon, CEO SHRF

 

The Solutions Program

SHRF's Solutions Program aims to mobilize Saskatchewan's research ecosystem by focusing and coordinating diverse skills and perspectives to address timely health challenges. These goals are achieved by supporting interdisciplinary research teams, including knowledge-users, to conduct projects with a measurable impact in defined focus areas.


The Solutions Program is comprised of two grants: the Innovation Grant and the Impact Grant. Both grants require that research teams include at least two Saskatchewan-based researchers from different disciplines and at least one Saskatchewan-based knowledge-user. Research teams are strongly encouraged to involve individuals with lived/living experience and to garner support from community leaders/organizations, decision-makers or industry-partners.


SHRF's Innovation Grant promotes creative problem-solving to catalyze innovative ideas and approaches, providing up to $50,000 over a one-year term.


SHRF's Impact Grant advances the translation of research into real-world and practical applications, providing up to $150,000 over a two-year term.


SHRF and our partners are excited to announce that the 2022-23 Solutions Program has funded 20 interdisciplinary research teams, for a total investment of $2,179,438.


 

Focusing on What Matters

SHRF's Solutions Program is unique, in part due to its targeted approach to funding. Solutions Focus Areas reflect the changing needs of Saskatchewan, in addition to:

  • Ecosystem capacity;

  • Stakeholder alignment;

  • Partnership opportunities; and

  • Potential for impact.

In a given year, the Solutions Program may support both SHRF-led and partner-led focus areas. These focus areas are intended to evolve with the needs of the province.


The 2022-23 Solutions Program strategically directed funding toward the following SHRF-led and partner-led focus areas:

Virtual Care

The need for instruments, assessment methods, policies and technologies that promote safe, effective and efficient virtual care remains a pressing need in Saskatchewan. Building on the momentum first established during the pandemic, this year's Virtual Care Focus Area encouraged researchers to consider long-term, coordinated and accessible solutions that can become a mainstay of Saskatchewan's healthcare climate – connecting patients to the care they need, when and where they need it.

In 2022-23, SHRF and our partners funded six projects through an investment of $494,951 in the Virtual Care Solutions Focus Area.

Addictions

Addictions research is complex due to its multi-faceted lens that considers the intersection of physical, social and economic factors. Accordingly, the Addictions Focus Area is well suited for the interdisciplinary and creative projects supported by SHRF's Solutions Program. SHRF first introduced the Addictions Focus Area in 2021, in-part due to the pressing overdose crisis happening in Saskatchewan. While the first year of funding introduced meaningful and impactful projects, we recognize that this work is far from complete and that trusting relationships take time to nurture and grow.

In 2022-23, SHRF and our partners funded four projects through an investment of $600,000 in the Addictions Solutions Focus Area.

Rural and Remote Healthcare

In partnership with a number of provincial health charities and foundations, the Rural and Remote Healthcare Focus Area was introduced to address the roles that geography, accessibility and service provision play on communities outside of Saskatchewan's larger centres. This funding reflects the combined priorities of the Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation, Lung Saskatchewan, Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, Hospitals Foundation of Regina and the Royal University Hospital Foundation. This focus area works to address Saskatchewan's context and needs, acknowledging that a significant portion of the provincial population live in rural, remote and northern communities wherein unique circumstances stand to impact residents' health and healthcare.

In 2022-23, SHRF and our partners funded four projects through an investment of $599,902 in the Rural and Remote Healthcare Solutions Focus Area.

Lung Health

In partnership with Lung Saskatchewan, the Lung Health Focus Area aims to direct funding toward research that improves the understanding and management of diseases of the lungs, and the quality of life of those who experience them. SHRF's partnership with Lung Saskatchewan allows our organizations to align our objectives, investments and reach to promote cutting-edge lung health research in our province.








In 2022-23, SHRF and Lung Saskatchewan funded four projects through an investment of $299,824 in the Lung Health Solutions Focus Area.

Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias

In partnership with the Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, the Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias Focus Area enables localized health research that supports prevention, disease management and quality of life among affected populations and their caregivers and loved ones.



In 2022-23, SHRF and Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan funded two projects through an investment of $184,760 in the Alzheimer’s and Other Dementias Solutions Focus Area.

 

Interdisciplinary Teams at Work

We are proud to announce the 2022-23 recipients of the Solutions: Innovation and Impact Grants and to witness the impact of their research in Saskatchewan. The Principal Investigators and project details are outlined below.


2022-23 Innovation Grant recipients:


Mohan Babu | University of Regina $50,000 In partnership with Lung Saskatchewan Lung Health Peptide Therapeutics For Cystic Fibrosis

Project Summary


Allison Cammer | University of Saskatchewan $49,509 Virtual Care The Cognitive Kitchen: An Evidence-Based Nutrition and Socialization Program for Rural Caregiver Support

Project Summary

Oleg Dmitriev | University of Saskatchewan Franco Vizeacoumar | University of Saskatchewan Andrew Freywald | University of Saskatchewan Sunil Yadav | University of Saskatchewan $50,000 In partnership with Lung Saskatchewan Lung Health

A Novel Biomarker for Personalized Chemotherapy of Lung Cancer

Project Summary


Anas El-Aneed | University of Saskatchewan Darryl Adamko | University of Saskatchewan $50,000 In partnership with Lung Saskatchewan Lung Health Improve Diagnosis of Lung Diseases Using Urine Tests

Project Summary


Stacey Lovo | University of Saskatchewan Gary Linassi | Saskatchewan Health Authority $49,262 Virtual Care

Community-Directed Virtual Care Strategies for the Management of Neuropathic Pain in Remote Indigenous Communities

Project Summary


Darrell Mousseau | University of Saskatchewan $49,933

In partnership with Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias Injecting Healthy Cells into the Brain to Slow the Progression of Alzheimer Disease

Project Summary

Susan Petryk | University of Saskatchewan Jill Bally | University of Saskatchewan $49,986 In partnership with Mental Health Research Canada Virtual Care The Virtual Specialist and the Travelling Nurse Practitioner: A Novel Consultation Model for Children and their Families to Improve Access to Developmental Pediatric and Child Mental Healthcare

Project Summary

Kristi Wright | University of Regina $49,981

Virtual Care Supporting Caregivers of Children with Cystic Fibrosis: The Development of an Online Mental Health and Wellness Prevention Program for Caregivers

Project Summary


 

2022-23 Impact Grant recipients:


Shauna Davies | University of Regina Ramona Kyabaggu | University of Regina $150,000

In partnership with Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation, Lung Saskatchewan, Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, Hospitals Foundation of Regina and the Royal University Hospital Foundation Rural and Remote Healthcare How Well Does Virtual Reality Compare to the Use of High Fidelity Manikins: Using Virtual Reality to Examine a Paramedic's Ability to Perform Specific Tasks and Skills When Seeking Employment in Rural and Remote Areas of Saskatchewan

Project Summary


Andrew Eaton | University of Regina Sarah Ross | AIDS Programs South Saskatchewan Shiny Mary Varghese | AIDS Programs South Saskatchewan Vidya Dhar Reddy | AIDS Programs South Saskatchewan $150,000 Addictions Map Community Needles Incidence Data and Respond with Harm Reduction Interventions in Regina, Saskatchewan: A Community-Based, Mixed-Method Study

Project Summary

Tasha Epp | University of Saskatchewan Jordan Woodsworth | University of Saskatchewan $149,914

In partnership with Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation, Lung Saskatchewan, Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, Hospitals Foundation of Regina and the Royal University Hospital Foundation Rural and Remote Healthcare A One Health Approach to Prevent and/or Respond to Dog-Related Issues, Including Aggressive Encounters in Rural and Remote Communities in Saskatchewan

Project Summary


Barbara Fornssler | University of Saskatchewan James Dixon | University of Saskatchewan Linzi Williamson | University of Saskatchewan Kayla Demong | Prairie Harm Reduction $150,000 Addictions Building Capacity to Reduce Substance Use Harms: Researching Effective Evaluation Standards for the Supervised Consumption Site in Saskatoon SK

Project Summary


Jonathan Gamble | Saskatchewan Health Authority Jennifer O'Brien | University of Saskatchewan $147,260 Virtual Care Making Virtual Multidisciplinary Preoperative Assessment Possible for Everyone in Saskatchewan

Project Summary


Arlene Kent-Wilkinson | University of Saskatchewan $134,827

In partnership with Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias Dementia Screening and Diagnosis for Older Persons in Custody at the Regional Psychiatric Centre

Project Summary


Shelley Kirychuk | University of Saskatchewan Kerry McPhedran | University of Saskatchewan

Lori Bradford | University of Saskatchewan Wanda Martin | University of Saskatchewan $150,000

In partnership with Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation, Lung Saskatchewan, Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, Hospitals Foundation of Regina and the Royal University Hospital Foundation Rural and Remote Healthcare Enhancing Wellness in our Miyo Wāskahikan

Project Summary


Benjamin Leis | University of Saskatchewan $150,000 Addictions Community as Cure: A Multi-Disciplinary Endocarditis Clinical (MENDO) Pathway

Project Summary


Ivar Mendez | University of Saskatchewan Rachel Johnson | University of Saskatchewan Stacey Lovo | University of Saskatchewan Scott Adams | University of Saskatchewan $149,988

In partnership with Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation, Lung Saskatchewan, Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, Hospitals Foundation of Regina and the Royal University Hospital Foundation Rural and Remote Healthcare Enhancing Access to Ultrasound Services Using a Telerobotic Ultrasonography System in Rural Southern Saskatchewan

Project Summary


Megan O'Connell | University of Saskatchewan $148,953 Virtual Care Re-imaging How Care Partner Support is Delivered by the Alzheimer Society of SK to Include Research-Supported Therapy

Project Summary

Erika Penz | University of Saskatchewan Alexandra King | University of Saskatchewan Amanda Froehlich-Chow | University of Saskatchewan Sithokozile Maposa | University of Saskatchewan Katelyn Roberts | Sanctum Care Group Alana Cattapan | University of Waterloo $150,000

In partnership with Saskatchewan Centre for Patient-Oriented Research (SCPOR) Addictions What is the Wholistic Value Produced Through Investing in Sanctum 1.5, the First HIV Prenatal Care Home in Canada?

Project Summary


Aneesh Thakur | University of Saskatchewan Azita Hadidi | University of Saskatchewan $149,824 In partnership with Lung Saskatchewan Lung Health Vaccine-Induced Protection of the Airways Against Inhaled Pathogens: Deciphering the Design Criteria for Inhalable Subunit Vaccines

Project Summary


 

Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF) is the provincial agency that funds, supports and promotes the impact of health research that matters to Saskatchewan. SHRF collaborates with stakeholders to contribute to the growth of a high-performing health system, culture of innovation and the improved health of citizens. These objectives are achieved by strengthening research capacity and competitiveness, increasing the investment in health research in Saskatchewan and aligning research with the needs of stakeholders.


Inquiries about SHRF's Solutions Program may be directed to Karen Tilsley, Director of Programs and Partnerships, at ktilsley@shrf.ca


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