Before I share my short remarks, I would like to thank Research Canada for this honour. I would also want to express my gratitude for those people who have nominated HealthCareCAN for this prestigious award. I am touched by the gesture.
I salute Dr. Waldron for her leadership work and accomplishments. You certainly deserve this recognition. I am very much impressed by all of what you done.
C’est un grand honneur qui m’arrive aujourd’hui. Mais nous savons toutes et tous que derrière un tel honneur se pointe un soutien extraordinaire, pas toujours visible, mais combien efficace. D’entrée de jeu, permettez-moi de souligner et de remercier le Conseil d’administration et l’équipe extraordinaire de SoinsSantéCAN qui m’ont accompagné dans cette année difficile de la pandémie du covid-19.
The HealthCareCAN team, working remotely from their homes, have consistently succeeded in carrying out all the mandates. It was for many of us an intense time during the period of lobbying the government to recognize the impact COVID-19 was having on the research community. The staff have worked tirelessly to contribute to achieving our objectives of representing and defending the interests of our members of the Canadian hospital research community to decision-makers, and while managing the day-to-day operations of an organization committed to being at the forefront of current events for and on behalf of all its members in the health care system.
In the midst of the devastation formed by the pandemic in 2020 and into 2021, our hospital research centre members have demonstrated an exceptional ability to come together to speak to their needs with one voice. Maintaining a high professional standard of the work done by our frontline teams and basic research and its application to health care and the care of Canadians has been at the forefront of these demands. Canada’s hospital system has been put to the test over the past eighteen months, and we have been able to navigate through these turbulent times thanks to the patience and tenacity of both our members and the team at HealthCareCAN.
I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the important contribution of all our partners in each of our dealings with public policy-makers. Their ongoing support and contribution have made it possible for all of us together to survive, and I do mean survive, this pandemic. Our partners from the Eastern, Central and Western provinces have listened attentively to our requests and appeals with a view to documenting, improving and enhancing our representations to politicians, and policy makers. I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to them and take the opportunity to highlight the value of their contribution and the strength of their representation.
En dernier lieu, permettez-moi de remercier le gouvernement du Canada, les députés, les ministres, les fonctionnaires pour leur accueil et leur ouverture aux revendications nombreuses, je dois l’admettre, fait à plusieurs reprises tout au cours de l’année 2020. L’aide financière et le soutien logistique et technique du gouvernement fédéral ont fait en sorte que tous nos membres ont pu maintenir leurs importantes prestations auprès de la population canadienne.
While there is still much to be done to meet COVID-19 challenges, I believe we are on the right track. However, we as a community, need to remain vigilant, because COVID-19 has made clear the need for a more resilient and agile health system. As Canada emerges from the pandemic, the federal government needs to tap into the full potential of the health and biosciences sector. As our former Minister of Science, the Honorable Kirsty Duncan, underscored in a tweet, “In 2021 Science will remain our most powerful tool in fighting COVID-19. But science matters beyond the pandemic. We must ensure the long-term health of research in our country; and this requires nurture and support to build a better future and quality of life for all Canadians”.
In conclusion, I am humbled and honoured to accept this award that you present to me today, and I am accepting it on behalf of the great team behind me — and sometimes ahead of me! — who have worked for our members, the common good and the health of all Canadians. Thank you.
About the Research Canada Leadership in Advocacy Award
The Research Canada Leadership in Advocacy Award recognizes outstanding champions of health research and health innovation. Recognition of Canadian health research—the kind that attracts the necessary public and political support—often comes from the dedicated and tireless efforts of health research advocates who educate policymakers, the media and the public about the social and economic benefits of health research and its promise of future cures and, importantly, a better quality of life for all Canadians. Learn more
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