The HDRN Canada Executive Committee (the “Executive”) provides scientific and management oversight and responsibility for HDRN Canada, including for the initiatives developed through the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) grant. The Executive provides leadership and ensures excellence across HDRN Canada, focusing on priorities recommended by the HDRN Canada Board of Directors.
Membership consists of a subset of the HDRN Canada’s Leads Team, with representation from Principal Applicants to the CIHR grant to develop the SPOR CDP, as well as additional members whose working groups or perspectives are not otherwise represented (for example, public engagement).
Kimberlyn McGrail, Scientific Director
Kimberlyn McGrail is a Professor at UBC in the School of Population and Public Health and the Centre for Health Services and Policy Research, Scientific Director of Population Data BC, Data Director for the BC Academic Health Sciences Network, and the PI for the SPOR Canadian Data Platform. Her research interests are quantitative policy evaluation, aging and the use and cost of health care services, learning health systems and all aspects of population data science. She conducts research in partnership with clinicians, policy-makers and the public. Kim is a founding member of the International Population Data Linkage Network and founding Deputy Editor of the International Journal of Population Data Science.
Alan Katz is the Director of the Manitoba Centre for Health Policy. He is a practicing family physician whose research interests include quality in primary care, Indigenous Health and the social determinants of health. “HDRN Canada represents an opportunity to exploit the unique natural experiment that Canada’s distributed health care system governance model presents. As the remaining provinces and territories develop administrative data centers and research capacity, we need to develop the capacity to learn from each other using the latest research methods and tools. My wife and I immigrated to Canada because of the Healthcare system. I am passionate about the potential this represents for addressing the needs of Canadians.”
P. Alison Paprica is Executive Advisor and Affiliate Scientist at ICES. Her previous roles include: Vice President, Health Strategy and Partnerships at the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence, Director responsible for $60 million annual research funding at the Ontario Ministry of Health, and Manager of Performance Measurement & Results at the Ontario Ministry of Research & Innovation. From 1993-2001 she worked in international pharmaceutical R&D at Eli Lilly, Astra Pharma and Genpharm Inc. Alison holds an Honours Combined BSc in Biochemistry and Chemistry (McMaster), a PhD in organic chemistry (Western University) and is Assistant Professor (status) at the Institute for Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto. Alison is also is a senior fellow at Massey College, a member of the Board of Directors at Ontario Genomics, and a member of the International Advisory Board for Health Data Research UK.
Brent Diverty is the Vice President of the Programs Division at the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI). In this role, he oversees CIHI’s extensive data holdings, which span the continuum of health care services and contain related financial, pharmaceutical and workforce data. He also has executive responsibility for CIHI’s strategic data initiatives, including work and partnerships to advance new data acquisitions, linkages, improving access and health system use of data as well as CIHI’s strategy for advanced analytics.
Mr. Charles Victor, MSc, PStat, is the Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships and External Services at ICES, Canada’s largest health services research institute. In this role he is responsible for developing and maintaining partnerships with data providers, governmental and non-governmental agencies, academic institutions and researchers, and industry partners. Over the past three years Mr. Victor has been responsible for the development and oversight of ICES’ Data and Analytic Services, a unit aimed at providing high quality research ready health services data and analytic reports to clinical researchers, health system stakeholders, and industry partners globally. Mr. Victor has over 15 years of experience as an epidemiologist and professional biostatistician providing methodological and statistical support to over 1000 research studies. His expertise spans several methodological and data resource domains including health administrative data, research study design and analysis, complex regression modelling techniques, and adult education in statistics.
For nearly twenty-five years Frank Gavin has worked to advance patient- and family-centred care. In 1995 he joined the Family Advisory Committee to The Hospital for Sick Children, chairing it from 1997 to 2001. In 2002 Frank founded and then for six years chaired the Canadian Family Advisory Network (CFAN), which links family councils at paediatric centres across Canada. From 2011 to 2017 he was a public member of The Canadian Drug Expert Committee at CADTH. He serves on the boards of The Canadian Association for Health Services and Policy Research, The Ontario SPOR Support Unit, on the advisory board of CIHR’s Institute of Human Development, Child and Youth Health and on the steering committees of CIHR’s Drug Safety and Effectiveness Network and of Converge3. Since 2016 he has been the Director of Citizen Engagement for CHILD-BRIGHT, the national CIHR research network focused on children with brain-based disabilities. Frank received the inaugural Volunteer Humanitarian Award from The Hospital for Sick Children in 2002, the Contribution to Child Health Award from The Canadian Association of Paediatric Hospitals in 2008, and the Best Patient Reviewer Award from The BMJ in 2017. For nearly 30 years he taught English at Centennial College and twice served as chair of the department.
Pr Jean-François Ethier is a clinician-scientist and associate professor in the Department of Medicine of the Université de Sherbrooke and the Sherbrooke University Health Center. He is also the codirector of the Groupe de recherche interdisciplinaire en informatique de la santé (GRIIS.ca). He has extensive collaborations in Europe and is an associate researcher at the INSERM UMRS 1138 in Paris. He received his medical training from McGill University where he graduated MD CM in 2006 and completed his residency in internal medicine in 2011. He subsequently completed a Master STS (public health) and a PhD in health informatics in Paris at Paris IV (Université Pierre-Marie Curie). His research duties include the direction of the Data Access Group of the Quebec SPOR Support Unit.
Jennifer Walker is a health services researcher and epidemiologist. She is a member of the Six Nations of the Grand River (Haudenosaunee). She has a PhD in Community Health Sciences (Epidemiology specialization) from the University of Calgary. Her work focuses on Indigenous use of Indigenous health and health services data across the life course, with a focus on older adults. She collaborates closely with Indigenous organizations and communities to address health information needs. Jennifer holds a Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health at Laurentian University in the School of Rural and Northern Health. She is a Core Scientist and Indigenous Lead at ICES. She also holds appointments at the Maamwizing Indigenous Research Institute, the Centre for Rural and Northern Health Research, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health.
Michael Schull is CEO and Senior Scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto, and a Senior Scientist at the Sunnybrook Research Institute. His research focuses on health service utilization, quality of care, health system integration and patient outcomes, and the evaluation of health policy. Under his leadership, ICES has expanded the types of data available for researchers, created a virtual platform where researchers outside ICES can access and analyze linked datasets, launched a health artificial intelligence data and analysis platform, and engaged the public in the work of ICES to ensure it remains aligned with public values. Dr. Schull leads the participation of ICES in a pan-Canadian initiative to build a national health and social data platform. He practices as an Emergency Medicine specialist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto.
Ted McDonald is a Professor of Economics at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton. He holds a Ph.D. and a Master of Commerce in Economics from the University of Melbourne. He is the founding Director of the NB Institute for Research, Data and Training, New Brunswick’s only provincial research data centre hosting administrative data. He is also the New Brunswick lead for the Maritime SPOR SUPPORT Unit, the Chair of the Canadian Research Data Centre Network Academic Council and the Academic Director of the Statistics Canada NB-RDC. His main areas of research include the health status and health services use of immigrants, rural residents, minority groups and other subpopulations, the socioeconomic and demographic determinants of cancer, and population migration and retention.