Thursday, January 31, 2008

New Chair in Diabetes Management at The University of Western Ontario

Dr. Stewart Harris to lead diabetes research Chair

     LONDON, ON, Jan. 31 /CNW/ - Dr. Stewart Harris, the lead investigator of
a study which revealed that half of Canadians with diabetes are not properly
controlling their disease, has been selected as the first holder of the
Canadian Diabetes Association Chair in Diabetes Management at The University
of Western Ontario.
The Canadian Diabetes Association and Western each committed $1 million
to the Chair, the cornerstone of a $5 million National Diabetes Management
Strategy. The Chair was established to develop and evaluate evidence-based
models of optimal diabetes management, and to advance the prevention and
treatment of diabetes, with the ultimate goal of improving the lives of the
approximately two million Canadians diagnosed with the disease, and the
millions of others at risk.
"I am honoured to accept this position, as it offers exciting
opportunities to harness the existing expertise and programs of related
research here at Western. My vision is to establish a diabetes research
population cohort that will allow us to identify and respond to major gaps in
care, and to provide interdisciplinary research and training opportunities,"
said Dr. Harris. "As Ontario embarks on a major reform of primary care
delivery, the time is ripe to promote optimal diabetes care as a model of
effective chronic disease management."
Dr. Harris is a professor in Family Medicine, Epidemiology and
Biostatistics, and Endocrinology at Western's Schulich School of Medicine &
Dentistry. He also holds the Ian McWhinney Chair in Family Medicine Studies.
Dr. Harris was the chair of the 2003 Clinical Practice Guideline Committee and
past-chair of the Clinical and Scientific Section of the Canadian Diabetes
Association. His major research interests focus on type 2 diabetes in
high-risk populations including Aboriginal Canadians and new immigrants, as
well as translational research on improving the management of diabetes in
primary care settings.
"We're especially pleased about the appointment of Dr. Stewart Harris as
the inaugural Canadian Diabetes Association Chair in Diabetes Management at
The University of Western Ontario," said Michael Howlett, President & CEO,
Canadian Diabetes Association. "Stewart's commitment to diabetes is clear and
his position as a leader in the diabetes research community is well
Western and the Canadian Diabetes Association are working together to
raise an additional $3 million for the National Diabetes Management Strategy.

The Canadian Diabetes Association works to prevent diabetes and improve
the quality of life for those affected by diabetes, through research,
education, service and advocacy. With a presence in more than 150 communities,
the Canadian Diabetes Association's strong network of assistance includes
volunteers, employees, healthcare professionals and partners. To learn more,
visit or call 1-800-BANTING (226-8464).

The Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at The University of Western
Ontario provides an outstanding education within a research intensive
environment where tomorrow's physicians, dentists and health researchers learn
to be socially responsible leaders in the advancement of human health.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

McGuinty government halts bidding process for home care contracts across the province

Minister acts out of concern for loss of continuity of patient care

TORONTO, Jan. 28 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is halting the
competitive bidding process for home care contracts across the province in
order to ensure that Ontarians receiving home services continue to receive the
highest quality of care.
"I work for patients and I am not going to put their relationships with
health care workers at risk," said George Smitherman, Ontario's Minister of
Health and Long Term Care.
A January 28 memo from the ministry to board chairs and executive
directors of Ontario's Community Care Access Centres asks all centres to
cancel bidding processes now underway for nursing, personal support,
homemaking and therapy services and to not restart such processes.
"To ensure there is no uncertainty, existing contracts will be extended,"
said Smitherman. "All processes for other contracts are being halted. In the
meantime, we have a fair bit of policy work to do. And my focus is on
maintaining the quality of services currently being provided."
Last week, Smitherman stopped the awarding of the home care services
contract in Hamilton and surrounding areas, which was the only community where
the awarding of a contract was imminent.
The January 28 memo further tells CCACs that the government is reviewing
the bidding process and related policies and procedures to "ensure they
support the principles of putting the client first, continuity of care and
stability for health care workers to ensure Ontarians receive the highest
quality home care services possible." It also states that further details will
be provided in the near future.

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Michener Institute looking to expand archives during its 50th Anniversary

January 28th, 2008 TORONTO – The Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences is beginning its 50th Anniversary celebrations with The Golden Archives Launch on Tuesday, January 29th, 2008 at 10 a.m.

As the first 50th Anniversary event, The Golden Archives Launch marks the beginning of a year long campaign to gather items from alumni, students and past and present faculty and staff to expand the school’s archives. Michener is looking for donations of brochures, event programs, photos and other items people may have from their time at Michener. There will also be a video camera set up at the Launch for guests to record their favourite Michener memories. Some messages will be transcribed into the 50th Anniversary commemorative book at the end of the year.

“This event will give us the opportunity to add to our archives and give people a chance to tell us stories about what Michener means to them,” says Dr. Paul Gamble, President and CEO, The Michener Institute. “In celebration of our 50th year we invite anyone with memories and artifacts from Michener to come and share those with us and donate items to our archives.”

n addition to The Golden Archives Launch there are other events throughout 2008 to celebrate the major milestone of reaching 50.

  • An appreciation event for Michener educators, past and present, held in May.
  • In September Michener will host a street party for the Michener community, the University Avenue hospitals, Baldwin Village and the Queen Street West community.
  • At the end of November, the very first Homecoming weekend will be held in conjunction with Michener’s Open House.
  • On Homecoming weekend Michener will also host it’s first Alumni and Friends Gala Dinner.

What began as a Medical Laboratory pilot program at Toronto General Hospital is now an educational facility boasting over 18 full-time, part-time and continuing education programs, many unique to Ontario and Canada.

In the last 50 years many new programs and initiatives have helped Michener gain the reputation it has today. Programs like Respiratory Therapy, introduced in 1969, and Anesthesia Assistant, introduced in 2005, show that Michener is always evolving to fill the needs set forth by the Canadian health care system. Partnerships with Canadian universities such as U of T and Dalhousie, and international connections in Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica make Michener well respected in the academic communities of many countries.

For Michener, the 50th Anniversary is a celebration of accomplishments from the past, enjoyment of the present and a look forward towards the future at what is to come.

Event: The Golden Archives Launch

Date: Tuesday, January 29th, 2008 at 10 a.m.

Where: The Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences, 222 St. Patrick Street, Toronto, Ontario (One block west of University Avenue and north of Dundas Street)

For more information about Michener, interview requests or media tours:
Iliana Arapis 416-596-3120 /