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COVID-19 PANDEMIC RESEARCH DIRECTIVES

Effective immediately, THP is suspending all non-essential on-site research activities until further notice. This is being done as part of a larger effort across THP and in line with the Toronto Academic Health Sciences Network (TAHSN) hospitals to focus on the immediate needs posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. This is also aligned with THP guidance and larger efforts to implement social distancing and slow the transmission of the coronavirus. You should anticipate that suspension of these research activities will be extended.

THP scientists and investigators are instructed to suspend all non-essential on-site research activity involving patients, families, healthcare workers, and other hospital staff immediately. This means the following:

New studies:

  • Halt the initiation of new studies involving: (1) in person, interaction with patients and families, (2) onsite activities at THP, (3) healthcare workers, and (4) other hospital staff unless:
    • there is an overriding rationale for continuity of care or patient safety, or
    • the research is on COVID-19.

To proceed in those exceptional cases, you must obtain written approval from Dr. Robert Reid, SVP Science and Chief Scientist.

On-going studies:

  • THP scientists and investigators are expected to identify what parts of your research activity are considered essential. With consideration for continuity of care and participants’ safety, researchers should halt recruitment, and conduct remote visits where possible. All in-person visits should be limited to those required for study treatments, safety and collection of critical endpoint data. Investigators need to ascertain any limitations with respect to lab, pathology, DI, etc. to support any research considered essential.   
  • You may continue research studies that are part of essential clinical care or about COVID-19 after obtaining approval from Dr. Robert Reid. Consideration will also be given to continuing studies that have significant cost or time-related implications. 
  • Research activities such as those related to study planning, analysis of existing data, or publication writing can continue.
  • All changes to study protocol must be recorded and submitted to the REB – see THP REB COVID-19 communication. Please contact the REB with any questions or concerns: THPREB@thp.ca
  • THP scientists and investigators should directly communicate with the study sponsor if any protocol changes are required. THP scientists and investigators that serve as site PIs in multi-site studies should communicate any changes with the Lead PI for the study.
  • Study personnel should postpone all on-site monitoring visits by the sponsors of clinical trials or other studies. If strictly necessary, arrangements can be made for monitoring without an in-person visit.
  • Further guidance will be distributed as available from funding organizations and specific clinical research groups.

Research personnel

  • THP and IBH are encouraging research teams and support staff to work remotely from home where possible. IBH is establishing mechanisms to enable research activities to continue remotely (offsite of THP premises).
  • Mentorship for research learners should continue remotely where possible as per guidance from the University of Toronto or other academic institutions; learners are not to be present onsite at THP unless approved by exception.
  • Hiring of any new research personnel or summer student work arrangements should be suspended until further notice, or by approval from Dr. Robert Reid. 

IBH support

  • IBH Operations and Project Management support staff, and THP REB staff are available to answer questions, and assist with these changes.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email IBH@thp.ca or contact Susan Law, Director of Research at susan.law@thp.ca or 905-848-7580 x1659. We will aim to respond to any questions as soon as possible.

Thank you for your patience and understanding, and please stay tuned for updates.

Sincerely,
Robert J. Reid, MD PhD 
Senior Vice-President, Science


Frequently Asked Questions – COVID-19 Pandemic Research Conduct & Requirements »


 

Trillium Health Partners established the Institute for Better Health to help create a new kind of health care for a healthier community. The Institute for Better Health leads research projects that align with the hospital’s goals and supports the advancement of research work across the hospital – all with the intention of improving health and transforming care. Research is happening throughout the hospital, from primary care to medical devices and cardiology to new drug interventions. The Institute for Better Health is focused on systems-based research and population health while building the infrastructure to better support and enable all research at the hospital. We believe that solutions that work within our walls will also work beyond our walls. Being embedded in one of the largest hospitals in Ontario offers exciting opportunities to test solutions that can be adapted to impact health and care in our community, province, country and beyond.

 

Mission
A new kind of health care for a healthier community using scientific expertise, innovative approaches and partnerships

Values
We are committed to enabling, producing and sharing meaningful research and innovation through compassion, excellence and courage

Compassion and inclusion of patients, providers and community
Excellence in using scientific evidence, system design and evaluation
Courage to think differently - plan, try, fail, succeed, improve, share

Research at The Institute for Better Health

We are focused on the discovery and implementation of scalable solutions that will produce better outcomes for our patients, community and the health care system as a whole. Guided by Trillium Health Partners’ goals in quality, access and sustainability, our work is focused on:

Quality – Health Services Implementation and Evaluation
Examine how people, organizations and health systems work together to discover areas for improvement.

Access – Patient and Provider Experience
Designing solutions around the needs and preferences of patients, families and providers.

Sustainability – Models of Care Integration and Exploration
Developing new models of delivering care that result in better practice, better outcomes and better experiences.

Our Functional Areas

The Institute for Better Health is comprised of five functional areas: Research Operations, Research Project Management, Data Discovery, Innovation and Knowledge Translation and Engagement. Each of these functional areas is essential to the innovative and collaborative research that happens across Trillium Health Partners and the Institute for Better Health.

Research Operations​ – Research Services, Policies and Procedures
Research Project Management – IBH Research Support
Data Discovery – Big Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence
Innovation Early Discovery and Pilot Projects
Knowledge Translation and Engagement – Connect, Enable, and Share Research

 

The Institute for Better Health was established in 2014. Watch our launch video here:


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