The Ontario Pharmacy Research Collaboration was launched on May 31 at a media event officiated by University of Waterloo senior administrators and the Honourable John Milloy, member of provincial parliament for Kitchener Centre.
Co-led by Drs. Nancy Waite and Lisa Dolovich, this ambitious multidisciplinary and multi-institutional research program is supported primarily by a $5.77 million grant from the government of Ontario to evaluate the quality, outcomes and value of medication management services that pharmacists and other healthcare professionals provide.
In recent years, the government of Ontario has expanded scope of practice so pharmacists — the third largest group of healthcare professionals in the province — can provide better patient-focused care. The province has invested significantly in these new services and may expand pharmacist scope of practice in the future.
OPEN was established to conduct a series of research projects to examine how effective current pharmacist services are, if patients are making the best use of them, how these services can assist other healthcare professionals to provide better healthcare, and what new or expanded medication management services might benefit Ontario’s patients.
OPEN’s projects are conducted in tandem with three program-wide themes to ensure research findings are put into action, that students and new investigators are trained in multidisciplinary health services research, and that dimensions of vulnerability are integrated into study designs, data collection and analyses.
OPEN brings together some 50 researchers, staff and students from the University of Waterloo, McMaster University, University of Toronto, Western University and the Bruyère Research Institute, a partnership of Bruyère Continuing Care and the University of Ottawa.