Welcome to the CHEO Research Institute 2013 Annual Report. As I write this message I’m reflecting on how it is such a privilege for me to lead such an outstanding group of scientists, clinical investigators, trainees and staff at the CHEO RI. Whether at the lab bench, the clinic, the Emergency Department or the Intensive Care Unit, researchers at CHEO are focused on realizing our vision of making discoveries today for healthier kids tomorrow. This means a determination to translate our findings into changing clinical practices that improve health outcomes for children and families.
We’ve structured this year’s Annual Report to highlight the depth and breadth of research programs currently underway at CHEO. For example, Dr. Roger Zemek in the Emergency Department has just enrolled more than one thousand patients in a pan-Canadian study aiming to determine which children are at highest risk for serious post-concussion symptoms. Once we understand how to recognize these children and adolescents early in their course we can start testing new therapies to improve outcomes. Dr. Kristi Adamo is working on how to combat childhood obesity very early in development by finding novel ways to decrease maternal obesity. Dr. Mona Jabbour is figuring out how to embed the best medical evidence into practical care pathways that physicians and nurses can adopt and use in rural hospitals. Dr. Denise Harrison is working to decrease the pain of immunizations in children while Drs. Samson and Brophy are aiming to determine the most effective time to start antiretroviral drugs in children infected by HIV at birth. All these programs aim to deliver better medical care to children and I encourage you to read further to learn more.
I mentioned that I am proud of our people – I am also tremendously proud of their achievements. According to Research Infosource, over the last three years CHEO is the fastest growing hospital-based research institute and the third-ranked pediatric research hospital in Canada. We have almost 200 researchers working in almost every department across the hospital; more than 500 active studies are ongoing at any given time; and we’ve published more than 300 peer-reviewed articles this past year alone.
Special thanks to the CHEO Foundation and community at large for your generous support of research at CHEO. We also owe a great deal of thanks to our stakeholders and partners locally in Ottawa, across Canada and around the world. Finally we are grateful to Alex Munter and the CHEO leadership team for their appreciation of the critical role research has in making kids and families be their healthiest. I believe that with such a supportive cast our researchers will continue to make ground-breaking discoveries that will help CHEO to deliver world-class care.
I hope you enjoy reading this report.
Dr. Martin Osmond