Up-and-coming Thunder Bay researcher earns Mitacs & NCR-IRAP Award for Outstanding Commercialization

An up-and-coming researcher at Lakehead University, with strong ties to the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute, has been recognized for his innovative work to develop a cutting-edge medical imaging technology that delivers high-resolution pictures at a much lower dose of radiation, providing a breast-imaging alternative to mammography, positron emission tomography (PET) scan and other imaging devices.

The breakthrough work has earned Oleksandr Bubon the Mitacs & NCR-IRAP Award for Outstanding Commercialization, awarded by Mitacs, a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada for business and academia. The award was presented at a ceremony in Ottawa on November 26th, 2019.

Bubon — a postdoctoral fellow studying at Lakehead University under Dr. Alla Reznik, Canada Research Chair and Scientist at the Health Research Institute — is being recognized for developing a novel solid state imaging technology that exposes patients to 10 to 15 times less radiation than traditional PET scans. At the same time, the technology delivers highly sensitive, accurate images that can detect extremely small tumours in their earliest stages of cancer, particularly in women who have denser breast tissue than average.

“It is an honour to receive this award and have my research recognized in this way,” said Bubon, who serves as Medical Chief Technology Officer of Radialis Medical, a joint venture of Lakehead University and Thunder Bay Regional Research Institute co-founded by Bubon and Reznik in February 2016. “There is a huge need for this lower-dose, high-resolution imaging device and we’re only just beginning to see the incredible potential this technology has.”

The technology is currently being developed and tested by Radialis Medical. The latest prototype — a fully enclosed system on wheels — is in clinical trials at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto with validation results expected to be available before the end of the year. The company is now working to scale its manufacturing and quality control efforts, and expects to be firmly established as a medical device manufacturer ready to seek FDA and Health Canada approval by mid-2020, Bubon said.

The Mitacs & NCR-IRAP Award for Commercialization is presented to a Mitacs intern for an idea brought from research that is either on the market or soon to be commercialized. Bubon is one of eight Mitacs award winners nationally, chosen from thousands of researchers who take part in Mitacs programs each year. The remaining seven recipients were recognized for outstanding innovation or exceptional leadership in other areas of research.

“Innovation in Canada continues to be inspired by the groundbreaking work of up-and-coming researchers that touch all industry sectors and help to fuel the economy,” said Jennifer Wilkie, Mitacs interim CEO. “Their achievements are truly remarkable and Mitacs is honoured to support them, and broker important connections between industry, post-secondary institutions and government that make their leading-edge work possible.”

“We know that employers are looking for students and graduates with real-world experience so they can make an immediate impact in the workforce,” said Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “By working with Mitacs to support experiential learning and the innovative work of researchers like Oleksandr Bubon, we can help more people get the meaningful, hands-on learning opportunities they need to secure good jobs and support Ontario’s growing economy.”

For more information about the Mitacs awards and a full list of winners, visit www.mitacs.ca.

Lakehead University researcher, Health Research Institute scientist receiving more than $448k from the Canadian Cancer Society

Dr. Alla Reznik

A Lakehead University researcher and Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute scientist was awarded $448,800 from the Canadian Cancer Society to continue research into a new method of diagnosing breast cancer that may detect lesions earlier than current methods.

This Innovation to Impact grant will allow Dr. Alla Reznik to spend three years developing Positron Emission Mammography (PEM), molecular imaging equipment that may alleviate some uncertainty from breast cancer detection.

“Although X-ray mammography remains the gold standard of breast cancer screening, there is increasing awareness of a large cohort of women for whom anatomical X-ray imaging has reduced sensitivity,” said Dr. Reznik, a professor in Physics at Lakehead University and scientist at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute.

“This includes women with dense breasts and women with known intermediate and high risk factors for breast cancer,” said Dr. Reznik, who is also the Canada Research Chair in the Physics of Molecular Imaging.

The first clinical prototype of the PEM system is assembled, its imaging performance has been characterized in a laboratory setting, and it is now at the University Health Network-Princess Margaret Cancer Centre for awaiting clinical trials.

“This project will add advanced capabilities to the current PEM prototype, using data from our pilot studies as a guide,” Dr. Reznik added. “The next-generation device will have a better dynamic range to allow for a wide array of clinical tasks – ranging from low-dose screening to high-dose treatment follow-up – and will be tested in multiple clinical centres in Canada and the United States to prepare data to support wide-spread deployment.”

Dr. Andrew P. Dean, Lakehead’s Vice-President, Research and Innovation and Board Chair of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute, said Dr. Reznik’s innovative research could someday improve the health outcomes for women around the world.

“Thank you to the Canadian Cancer Society for awarding Dr. Reznik with this Innovation to Impact grant. Grants such as these are extremely important so that fundamental research can lead to better health outcomes for women,” he said.

“Dr. Reznik is a key contributor to our health research program that is vital to advancing our academic mission and even more importantly, to improving the health of the population,” said Jean Bartkowiak, President and CEO of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre and CEO of the Health Research Institute. “Health research, like that of Dr. Reznik, provides patients with the opportunity to participate in research activity that helps design the care of the future and to access equipment at the frontier of health technology development.”

Dr. Judy Bray, Vice-President, Research at the Canadian Cancer Society, said Dr. Reznik’s research could be very beneficial to women’s health and wellbeing.

“With one in eight Canadian women expected to be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, there is a need for more accurate and sensitive screening methods so that we can detect and treat the cancer earlier,” Dr. Bray said.

“That’s why we are proud to fund Dr. Reznik’s work in making breast mammography a more reliable screening tool for all women, including those with dense breasts and those at increased risk for breast cancer. We are grateful to our generous donors who enable us to support innovative researchers like Dr. Reznik and help create a world where no Canadian fears cancer.”

Research Day Returns to Showcase Health Research in Northwestern Ontario

Dr. Patrick McGrath

After a successful debut in 2018, a local event designed to showcase health research returned for another year.

The second annual Research Day took place October 4th at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (the Hospital) and provided attendees interested in health research with valuable information, skills-building and networking opportunities.

Research Day is a collaboration between the Hospital and its research arm, the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute.

Highlights of this event included a special keynote presentation from Dr. Patrick McGrath, (‘Translating Research to Patient Care’), a panel discussion (‘Using seed funding to leverage research for patient care’) presentations by researchers, poster displays, and workshops for attendees.

“We’re excited to shine the spotlight on the work of our researchers,” said Jean Bartkowiak, President and CEO of the Hospital and CEO of the Health Research Institute. “A robust health research program is vital to advancing our academic mission but more importantly, to improve the safety and quality of care and ultimately, the health of the population we serve. It provides patients with the opportunity to participate in research activity that helps design the care of the future.”

The theme for this year’s event was ‘Moving Research to Patient Care: From Bench to Bedside’.

“High quality health care is driven by high quality research,” said Dr. Valerie Grdisa, Executive Vice President, Research, Quality & Academics and Chief Nursing Executive at the Hospital. “Researchers at our Hospital and the Health Research Institute are undertaking a wide range of basic and applied health research with the aim of improving the lives of those living in Northwestern Ontario.”

The 2019 edition of Research Day focused on the importance of translating research into patient care and provides an opportunity for communicating the value of research to the patient and health sciences community.

Translational research applies findings from basic science to enhance human health and well-being. It aims to “translate” findings in fundamental research into medical practice and meaningful health outcomes. Translational research implements a “bench-to-bedside”, from laboratory experiments through clinical trials to point-of-care patient applications model, harnessing knowledge from basic sciences to produce new drugs, devices, and treatment options for patients. The end point of translational research is the production of a promising new treatment that can be used with practical applications that can then be used clinically or are able to be commercialized.

For a summary about this year’s Research Day, visit www.tbrhri.ca/researchday2019

Moving Research to Patient Care: From Bench to Bedside

Dr. Patrick McGrath

Health Research Institute and Hospital host 2nd Annual Research Day

After a successful debut in 2018, a local event designed to showcase health research returns for another year.

The second annual Research Day is taking place on Friday, October 4th, 2019 at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (the Hospital) and will offer valuable information, skills-building and networking opportunities for anyone interested in health research. Research Day is proudly presented by the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute, in collaboration with the Hospital.

Research Day will be open to all staff at the Hospital and Health Research Institute as well as physicians, health practitioners, staff of our partner organizations and to interested members of the public. The theme for this year’s event is ‘Moving Research to Patient Care: From Bench to Bedside’.

Highlights of this event will include a special keynote presentation from Dr. Patrick McGrath, a panel discussion, research presentations, interactive workshops, poster presentations, lunch and networking.

About Our Research Day Keynote Speaker

Dr. Patrick McGrath OC, PhD, FRSC, FCAHS, is a clinical psychologist, scientist, senior health administrator and social entrepreneur.  He currently is Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry, at Dalhousie University and Scientist at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

His research focuses on two areas:  the use of technology to deliver care and pain in child health. Most of his research focuses on translating research into care. He develops interventions and conducts pragmatic randomized trials to evaluate the interventions.

He has published over 325 peer-reviewed papers, 50 book chapters and 14 books. His h-index is 94 and his work has been cited over 32 thousand times (Google Scholar). He has received numerous national and international awards and recognitions for his research, mentoring and advocacy including being appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada, being elected as fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.

Dr. McGrath was co-winner of the Principal Award of the Manning Foundation in 2013, and the Governor General’s Innovation award in 2017 for the Strongest Families e-health system (www.strongestfamilies.com). He is Chair of the Board of the not for profit, Strongest Families Institute which delivers mental health care to over 7000 families each year across Canada and employs 85+ people. His newest company is 60Seconds, a novel health information strategy.

He currently leads major grants in developing and evaluating apps for Family Doctors to prescribe to their patients (Health enSuite, CIHR Foundation Grant); a coached intervention for caregivers (Province of Nova Scotia, Major Grant) and a coached program for children with neurodevelopmental disorders and mental health problems (CIHR. Child Bright Network).  In his private practice, he sees children and adults for therapy.

He has served on dozens of university, health system and national committees and currently serves as a member of the Order of Canada Advisory Committee.

Dr. McGrath will be presenting ‘Translating Research to Patient Care’ on Research Day (8:45 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.) in Auditorium A & B (3rd Level at the Hospital).

For more information about Research Day, visit www.tbrhri.ca/researchday2019 or contact Lisa Niccoli at niccolil@tbh.net

Health Research Institute Board Member Profile: Dr. Penny Moody-Corbett

Dr. Penny Moody-Corbett

The Vision Statement for the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM), “Innovative education and research for a healthier north”, captures the passion and philosophy of those of us who work and learn at NOSM. As the Associate Dean, Research I have the pleasure of working with bright and innovative researchers. They tackle tough problems, using research approaches that do not always lend themselves to traditional western research methodologies. Researchers include bench scientists working on chronic and infectious diseases, biomedical scientists tackling difficult health and environmental questions, social scientists studying Indigenous health issues, the complexity of distributed medical education and social accountability and clinical scientists planning better and improved methods for treating patients in rural and remote settings.

While I have been at NOSM I have participated in research focused on a better understanding of recruitment and retention of health care providers in northern and underserviced areas. Together with partners from Northern Europe, NOSM participates in the “Recruit and Retain – Making it Work” project. NOSM’s unique approach to education has demonstrated the importance of training students “in the north for the north”. This and other approaches have provided a model for addressing health work force stability and are now being tested by each of the partners. At NOSM, our project involves collaborating with colleagues in Nunavut on health workforce recruitment and retention. The work contributes to a global effort working to improve health service delivery in rural, remote and underserviced populations through organizations such as Training for Health Equity Network, an international organization, of which NOSM was a founding member.

I have been a member of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute Board of Directors for the past four years as the NOSM representative. The Board provides a great opportunity to see first hand the research being done both at our Hospital and beyond and provides an opportunity to network with researchers, business personnel, entrepreneurs and health care providers. Research involves working with motivated and knowledgeable individuals and the Board provides an opportunity to hear directly from our research scientists, engage in inspiring conversation and plann with a diverse cross-section of colleagues all interested in improving health and health care delivery.

I think people would be surprised to know that our Hospital is an active research site and that the Health Research Institute Board is actively engaged in strategies to promote and advance best practices, based on research evidence and innovation conducted in Thunder Bay. Our research scientists are national and international stars in their fields and the research conducted at the Health Research Institute is known across the world.

I am a Physiologist, with a PhD from McGill University. I did post-doctoral research at Harvard and Tufts New England Medical Centre in Boston. I spent most of my research career as a Professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland, including eleven years as Associate Dean Research and Graduate Studies in the Faculty of Medicine. I worked as Director of Ethics and the Strategy for Patient Oriented Research at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) before taking the position of Associate Dean Research at NOSM.

Finding Innovative Ways to Use Radioactive Isotopes to Solve Common Problems

Dr. Michael Campbell, PhD

Vision for research

The goal of my research program is to find new and innovative ways to use radioactive isotopes to solve common problems.  My research lab applies chemistry techniques used for the synthesis of drugs, polymers or other common materials to find ways of working with these radioactive materials to answer specific questions.

Some of the questions we are looking at include:

  • Is there a better way to attach this radioactive atom to a radiopharmaceutical?
  • What precious metals are in this ore sample?
  • Are there better ways to produce and distribute medical isotopes?

First, a bit about what radioisotopes are.  Most of us will remember seeing the little cartoons of an atom where you have the electrons around the outside and the nucleus in the middle. If we zoom in to the nucleus you will find positively charged particles called protons.  The number of protons is what determines if the atom is hydrogen, carbon or some other element.  We will also see particle that don’t have any charge called neutron.  In most atoms if the number of protons and neutrons are balanced within a certain range the atom is stable and most likely has been around for billions of years and most likely will be around for another billion or so.  Where it gets interesting is when the number of neutrons gets out of balance, this makes the nucleus unstable and is radioactive.  To get to a stable state the atom releases some energy, this energy is what we detect when we use radioisotopes to diagnose or treat diseases.

Where do the radioisotopes come from? 

There are many sources of radioisotopes.  Many radioisotopes are naturally occurring, if you pick up a piece of granite chances are there are at least some radioactive atoms present.  Radioisotopes can also be created. In Thunder Bay, we are fortunate to have a cyclotron that can give us access to a variety of isotopes and facilities for working with these materials.

How do you use radioisotopes help detect diseases and what are the challenges?

The main isotope that the cyclotron produces for the detection of cancer is a radioactive version of fluoride called F-18.  If only F-18 was given to a patient it wouldn’t have any way of guiding it to the tumour, it needs to be attached to a drug that is able to seek out the tumour.  This is where we come in.  Chemists have developed many processes for connecting atoms to molecules but with Radiolabeling compounds one of the big (or very small in this case) problems is one of scale.  A very small amount of radioactive material goes a long way.  If we use the example of F-18 from our cyclotron as an example, the amount of F-18 that is in an actual dose is less than 1 nano gram.  To put that in perspective if you take a single grain of salt, that is 10,000 times larger than the amount of F-18 in a single dose used to detect cancer.

When working on this scale it is impossible to weigh out materials at that small a scale and as a result, the amount of other reagents the F-18 has to react with are in huge excess.  What this means is that after the reaction is done, there is a lot of other stuff that needs to be removed in order to get a pure product.  This is where the next problem comes up, the material is radioactive after all so that means that the normal methods of handling and purifying compounds become more difficult and can’t be handled directly.  The final challenge is time, as F-18 only has a half life of 110 minutes.  That means approximately every 2 hours you have half as much material remaining so we need to work fast.

The work we are doing hopes to address these problems. We are taking the molecules that the F-18 reacts with and attaching them to a tether and then attaching the other end of the tether to a small plastic bead.  We have set up the attachment of the molecule to the tether in such a way that when it reacts with F-18 the tether is cut and the radioactive molecule is now in solution.  What this lets us do is to remove any excess molecules by sampling filtering off the plastic beads.  This may not work for every molecule but it will hopefully allow us to prepare and purify molecules that we otherwise difficult to make.

Funding

The research in my lab would not be possible with out the generous support of the following group:

Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute

The National Science and Engineering Research Council

Acsion Industries in Pinawa, Manitoba

GoldCorp Musselwhite

Lakehead University

Health Research Institute Board Member Profile: Kathleen Lynch

Kathleen Lynch

My research vision is to encourage and support research to meet the unique needs of the people of Northwestern Ontario and to improve the health outcomes of our population. In alignment with the Health Research Institute’s vision of “bringing discovery to life,” I am interested in exploring opportunities to enhance patient care, while inspiring students through the integration of research and applied learning opportunities. By engaging learners in research and health care technology advances in the educational environment, we can instill a spirit of innovation in the future leaders of health care in our region and beyond.

It is my privilege to represent Confederation College on the Health Research Institute’s Board of Directors. We are grateful to have a permanent seat on the Board, supporting Confederation College’s valued and longstanding partnership with the Health Research Institute. Colleges have much to offer in applying the latest research through an applied, experiential learning environment. Confederation College is able to take advantage of our partnership with the Health Research Institute to apply the latest research developments to our curriculum and support the work of the Institute through our regional campuses as well.

The most important thing people should know about the Health Research Institute is how critical its work is in helping to support local research, which can help address the issues unique to northwestern Ontario.  Through the Health Research Institute’s efforts, our region is better able to anticipate the changing needs of patients and find solutions we can apply in the health care setting locally. The range of research projects in which we are engaged is considerable and we should be proud to have such a diverse group of scientists committed to working with the Institute.

I was appointed as the President of Confederation College in September of 2018 and have more than 30 years of progressive leadership experience in health care, human services and education. Prior to Confederation, I was the Vice President of Rehabilitative Care at St. Joseph’s Care Group (SJCG). There I witnessed first-hand the health care issues faced by people across this region and how advances in research are helping people on a practical level through prevention, treatment and care. I was born and raised in Thunder Bay. Prior to working at SJCG, I worked at Confederation College for 14 years, including serving as the Dean of the School of Health and Community Services. I hold an Honours Bachelor of Social Work degree from Lakehead University and a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Toronto, where I studied social policy and administration.

Preparing for a New Era in Health Care

Message from the Board Chair and CEO

Message from the CEO and Board Chair

Normally when we think of medical research advances, we think of scientists in white coats developing new treatments in test tubes. This is often still the case, but there is a new era in health care research on the horizon where test tubes are traded for something a little more digital.

Smart health isn’t a method of treatment as much as it’s a way to improve access to health care and patient flow, while supporting patients to receive the right care at the right time. The Digital Age has brought us instant communications, more advanced computer modelling and data management, and ultimately more ways for health care providers to connect with their patients.

The possibilities with smart health are almost limitless; smart health has the potential to affect every area of health care today – including, crucially, improving access to care for rural and remote communities and in particular our Indigenous peoples. This past January, we welcomed Dr. Zubair Fadlullah as the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute’s newest scientist and the first Lakehead University-Health Research Institute Research Chair in Smart Health Technology. As you’ll read in this year’s Annual Report, he has a plan to implement smart health technology in three different ways: implementing sensors, improving connectivity, and using artificial intelligence (AI) for decision support. His work in distance and smart health in Japan will be a tremendous asset to our Health Research Institute and to health care in Northwestern Ontario.

We also welcomed Dr. Jinqiang Hou to our team of scientists this year. Dr. Hou’s research into Positron-emission tomography (PET) imaging using fluorine-18-labelled radio isotopes will further advance our radioisotope program, taking full advantage of the cyclotron technology. His research will lead to new ways of diagnosing and treating cancer as well as possibly other diseases. The Health Research Institute is lucky enough to be one of the few hospital-based research centres with access to an onsite cyclotron, making our research center so much more attractive.

These and other projects will enhance the Health Research Institute’s strengths and help our Hospital overcome barriers and challenges to care throughout our region including addressing our Indigenous population’s health disparities.

Twelve years ago, we made a commitment to provide patient-centred research to the region, finding solutions to our barriers to care. Smart health may be the newest direction, but it is not the only one. We continue to support the great progress of our scientists, advancing medical knowledge and bringing new ways of treating patients that are focused on the needs and challenges of Northwestern Ontario.

 

Jean Bartkowiak
CEO, Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute

Dr. Andrew Dean, PhD
Interim Chair, Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute Board of Directors

 

To read our full 2018/2019 Annual Report, please view it online at www.tbrhri.ca/2018-2019AnnualReport

Community Donations Go a Long Way to Supporting Regional Health Care

(L-R) Mike and Dawn Wrenshall.

Research is vital in Northwestern Ontario, helping us find solutions to our unique health care challenges. Despite our barriers to care, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre programs consistently rank among the best in Ontario, and we are a Leading Practice in several areas including orthopaedics, Telemedicine, and Patient and Family Centred Care (PFCC). The Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation continues to support health research thanks to the generosity of donors throughout the region.

Mike and Dawn Wrenshall are incredible examples of how local residents can make a big difference to research. Their contribution was a direct result of the care Mike received. He was diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2018 and referred to urologist Dr. Hazem Elmansy.

“When you find out you have cancer, your world shifts – majorly,” Mike said. “I had surgery in less than a week. It was such a relief to get it out of me… You feel violated that something like that would be in your body.”

Mike and Dawn credit Dr. Elmansy for helping Mike survive his cancer. “We’re extremely lucky to have him here in Thunder Bay,” Mike said. “I don’t actually think our community recognizes just how talented and caring he is.”

The story doesn’t end there. What you may not know is that research is of particular interest to Dr. Elmansy. Many clinicians choose to practice in Thunder Bay specifically because of the research opportunities available to them. It’s big enough to offer a wide range of possibilities, yet small enough that it’s easy to work with other clinicians and scientists at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute.

The couple decided to support Dr. Elmansy’s ongoing urological research, donating $10,000 to the Health Sciences Foundation. “I am proud to donate in honour of him,” Mike said. “I thought that if there was anything I could do to recognize his work and allow him to continue to offer incredible care, then I’d do it. It’s our way to show support for the work he’s doing now and the work we hope he will continue to do in the future.”

Many people in Northwestern Ontario like the Wrenshalls understand the importance of local research to find local solutions. Donations through the Foundation’s Health Discovery Fund help support scientists and clinician researchers meet those goals with funding that wouldn’t otherwise exist.

Designing Better Patient Care

(L-R) James McCormick, Lisa Ewen, Connor Little and Dr. Arnold Kim.

Standard patient records, whether they are paper or electronic, are large and often fragmented collections of information. But what if you could bring all that information into a design environment and create a “blueprint of care”? This would allow care providers to literally visualize the treatment plan and instantly see the big picture. That’s exactly what Dr. Arnold Kim, a Hospitalist at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre, set out to do 10 years ago.

When you go to see the doctor, he or she records your symptoms in your chart, analyzes what you’ve said, and then starts treatment planning. Your doctor may order tests, prescribe medications, and plan a follow-up visit. But these entries are disconnected bits of information that will need to be read again in the future, forcing the care provider to reconstruct the patient story or “narrative” from scratch every time.

“That’s a weak point in the medical system,” Dr. Kim said. “Narrative works well when you are giving simple directions, like to the store from your house. But when we rely upon narrative to describe very intricate relationships like those in health care, it breaks down. There are many more directions, perhaps several destinations, and even different steps happening at the same time.”

Now imagine that when doctors enter information into your electronic medical record (EMR), the system automatically suggests a blueprint of care. Instantly, any health care professional helping you can visualize your care plan, where you are, and what the next step is.

Aurora Constellations is that software. Dr. Kim calls it a patient care design tool – and there is nothing quite like it anywhere. The name comes from the fact that when we see constellations rather than a mass of disconnected stars, we are better able to navigate. Aurora Constellations represents the next generation of EMR technology, adding decision support for treatment planning, automating test ordering, direct prescription ordering, integration of the latest research, and more.

“It’s a powerful way to accurately implement evidence-based medicine, standardized care procedures, and hospital policies inside the patient’s blueprint of care,” Dr. Kim said.

Although patent pending, Aurora Constellations software is still in the development stage, he said. A number of collaborators came together including our Hospital, students from the Computer Science Department at Lakehead University including James McCormack and Lisa Ewen, and the Northern Ontario Medical School (NOSM). Clinical trials involving NOSM students are scheduled to begin at our Hospital in the fall of 2019.

“Students tend to be more tech savvy, so I believe that they will be more able to help undertake this huge shift towards design-based patient care.”

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