Like many health professionals, I got involved in research because I couldn’t accept having to tell my patients “there is nothing more we can do for you.” Today, thanks to research, I don’t have to say this nearly as often as I used to, and I have real hope that in the future I may not have to say it at all.
As you’ll see in this report, our scientists are making exciting advances that are improving care at The Ottawa Hospital and around the world, as well as fuelling more hope for the future.
For example, Dr. Michael Schlossmacher is leading the development of groundbreaking new approaches for the early detection Parkinson’s; Dr. Marc Rodger is spearheading the expansion of an innovative new treatment program for life-threatening blood clots; and Dr. Marjorie Brand’s group is making important progress in understanding how adult stem cells help replenish our blood.
All of this exciting work has been catalyzed through partnerships between researchers with very different areas of expertise. A culture of collaboration is a key strength of OHRI and, indeed, the entire Ottawa health research community.
In the last year, we’ve made great progress in strengthening our partnerships with The Ottawa Hospital, the University of Ottawa and its Faculty of Medicine, and we’ve worked closely with CHEO, the University of Ottawa Heart Institute and the Champlain Local Health Integration Network on a number of projects. By working together in this way, I believe our city can enhance its competitiveness on the world stage and lead the way in making groundbreaking medical discoveries, providing world-class patient care, training the next generation of scientists and health professionals, and creating the jobs of the future.
As you’ll see in this report, OHRI has reached a number of important milestones this year. We released our three-year strategic directions, which outline a number of initiatives designed to enhance our ability to translate research into benefits for patients and society. We’ve completed the construction of new laboratories for innovative cancer and regenerative medicine research, and we’re on track to open a new building for high-impact clinical research later this year. We’ve also grown to become the fourth largest hospital-based research institute in the country in terms of funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). Given the increasing competition for CIHR grants, our success in this area is a strong testament to the exceptional quality of our research.
I would like to conclude by recognizing all of our trainees, scientists, clinical investigators, staff and volunteers for a year of incredibly hard work. I would also like to thank the many individuals who have supported our research through generous donations to The Ottawa Hospital Foundation. I am honoured to lead the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute into what promises to be another banner year.
Dr. Duncan Stewart
CEO and Scientific Director, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
Vice-President, Research, The Ottawa Hospital
Professor of Medicine, University of Ottawa