May 23, 2019 (Ottawa) – HealthCareCAN is commending important new support for health innovation and transformation through the federal government Stream 4 Strategic Innovation Fund.
“Health organizations across the country have been looking to the federal government to invest in digital health and data platforms to support innovation and transformation that will help us better meet the health needs of Canadians,” said Paul-Émile Cloutier, President and CEO of HealthCareCAN. “With the announcements made this week we are in a much better position to enhance health innovation in Canada.”
This week Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Navdeep Bains announced investment of up to $49 million for the Industry Consortium for Image Guided Therapy (ICIGT), a pan-Canadian network working to accelerate application of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies for more accurate image-guided therapies such as MRIs, CT scans and ultrasounds. Minister Bains has also announced support of up to $49 million for the Digital Health and Discovery Platform (DHDP), a network of partners establishing a Canada-wide health data platform.
HealthCareCAN has urged the federal government to support the creation of national digital health platforms that enable data sharing between institutions across Canada. These platforms will strengthen the health system, improve health outcomes for Canadians, position Canada as a world-leader in evidence-based, data-driven health research, and attract investments in the health and life sciences industries to Canada.
“Leveraging the use of AI in health while developing common platforms to link and share health data across institutions and jurisdictions will help researchers answer key questions about health, risk factors and disease, and will support clinicians in delivering the best care in the most affordable way,” added Mr. Cloutier. “As a major economic driver in Canada, the health and life sciences sector is a major force for innovation.”
Sunnybrook Research Institute leads the network of 70 private and public sector partners in the ICIGT project. The DHDP is led by the Terry Fox Institute/Imagia and includes 95 members across provinces, including 31 healthcare institutions, including HealthCareCAN members University Health Network, McGill University Health Centre and IWK Health Centre.
The National Health Leadership Conference in Toronto from June 10-11 will focus on the theme of Healthcare innovation: Advancing better outcomes and economic growth as well as digital health.
HealthCareCAN is the national voice of healthcare organizations and hospitals across Canada. We foster informed and continuous, results-oriented discovery and innovation across the continuum of healthcare.
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Steve Wharry, Director, Communications and Member Services
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