Ivar Mendez, head of the Department of Surgery, is one of seven U of S researchers receiving Sprout grants.

Research funding to improve patient outcomes

Bringing ultrasound services to northern Saskatchewan using robots, identifying the support needs for Indigenous cancer patients and their families, and developing resources for families affected by addiction in Prince Albert are just a few of the seven U of S projects that will take a patient-oriented approach in researching several health care challenges currently facing the province.

Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF), in partnership with and support of the Saskatchewan Centre for Patient-Oriented Research (SCPOR), today announced the recipients of eight Sprout grants for patient-oriented health research. This partnership investment, totalling over $1.2 million, will cultivate research in Saskatchewan to address patient-identified priorities with the goal of growing patient-oriented solutions for the health care system.
As part of Canada’s Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research led by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, nine provincial partners, including SHRF and SCPOR, are working together to ensure the right patient receives the right intervention at the right time. The eight teams awarded Sprout grants will tackle a range of pressing needs by exploring and testing innovative solutions. 
“This funding is part of SHRF’s commitment to support high impact health research addressing Saskatchewan needs,” said SHRF CEO Patrick Odnokon. “By working collaboratively in teams of patients, researchers, health care providers and health care decision makers, and with the support of SCPOR, we expect these projects will make a difference for what matters most to patients.” 
“This type of collaboration keeps patients at the centre of the research process,” said SCPOR Executive Director Helen Kenyon. “With this approach, these funded teams will make strides towards better care and a better health care system for all Saskatchewan people.” 
Each project was chosen through a competitive, peer-reviewed process that evaluated not only the innovative ideas and the multidisciplinary teams, but how they plan to engage patients throughout their research project and have a tangible impact on patient outcomes. 
The following patient-oriented projects were awarded: 
  • A Collaborative Approach to Comprehensive Screening and Assessment of Fall Risk for Older Adults Across the Continuum of Care in Saskatchewan
    Principal Investigators: Catherine Arnold, University of Saskatchewan and Daphne Kemp, Saskatoon Health Region
  • Bringing Birth Back: Improving Access to Culturally Safe Birth in Saskatchewan
    Principal Investigator: Angela Bowen, University of Saskatchewan
  • Testing the Efficacy of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction as a Prophylactic Intervention in the Prevention of Perimenopausal Depression: A Randomized Trial
    Principal Investigator: Jennifer Gordon, University of Regina
  • Sâkipakâwin - Assessing the Support Needs for Saskatchewan Indigenous Cancer Patients and their Families: A Multi-Method Study
    Principal Investigator: Gary Groot, University of Saskatchewan
  • Efficacy of Nordic Walking to Improve Physical Function, Quality of Life and Posture in Women with Osteoporosis, History of Vertebral Fracture or Hyperkyphosis
    Principal Investigator: Saija Kontulainen, University of Saskatchewan
  • Exploring the Needs for and Developing Resources for Families Affected by Addiction in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan
    Principal Investigators: Geoffrey Maina and Marcella Ogenchuk, University of Saskatchewan
  • Improving Health Outcomes of Kidney Recipients: A Randomized Controlled Trial of a Pre-Transplant Education Intervention
    Principal Investigator: Holly Mansell, University of Saskatchewan
  • Development and Evaluation of a Remote Robotic Ultrasound Clinic Model to Improve Access to Medical Imaging in Rural, Remote and Indigenous Communities
    Principal Investigators: Ivar Mendez and Brent Burbridge, University of Saskatchewan
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