A Decade Older, A Decade Wiser

Ten years ago, the Ontario Brain Institute (OBI) was established with a goal of improving brain health for the 1 in 3 Ontarians directly impacted by brain disorders. As we look back, we’re certain that our formula for collaborative discovery and innovation works and that we are on course to advance brain health. But along the way we’ve learned a lot by testing assumptions, collecting feedback from our stakeholders, and gathering data that will help us chart the course for the next phase. While there are many insights we could share, a few stand out which will help us focus our activities through this funding cycle and the next. And they all revolve around how we work with people, which is when you think about it makes sense for an organization that is focused on building relationships and supporting collaborations.

We have learnt to appreciate that showing direct impact of work on the people and the community is as important as strong performance metrics. We’ve seen that patient engagement improves the quality of research and makes its outputs more meaningful. And lastly, we must listen to the needs of our stakeholders and build systems to help them succeed. Continue reading “A Decade Older, A Decade Wiser”

Why Patient Engagement Matters in Improving Brain Health?

 

1. Lived experience offers valuable insight on what matters

“Being a part of OBI’s Patient Advisory Committee has provided me the opportunity to increase my own knowledge base while being able to share my opinions and thoughts – the ability to contribute a broader personal perspective, based on my lived experience and professional experience towards research projects” says Shelly LaForest. Shelly is a parent of three – two of whom have epilepsy, a practicing Registered Nurse at The Hospital for Sick Children and a member of OBI’s Data Access Committee and Community Advisory Committee (CAC) for EpLink. Continue reading “Why Patient Engagement Matters in Improving Brain Health?”

Care in the Digital Age

The shift from traditional in-person activities to the digital space brought on by the pandemic has been challenging, but this change gave us a new perspective on how we do our work. Simply by moving online, we’ve been able to reduce barriers to access and reach more people than ever before. Change doesn’t come easily, but despite the challenges we’ve faced along the way, we are poised to steer the future of brain health into the digital space by investing our energy and resources in the right places.

OBI is committed to supporting activities that either generate the evidence to improve care or lead to the development of products and services that improve health outcomes. We’re striving to improve the lives of people with brain disorders and moving to digital or virtual approaches makes it easier to reach the 1 in 3 Ontarians in the comfort of their homes. Over the last year, we’ve supported major efforts to address mental health challenges, better the delivery and experience of virtual care, and create new tools that can be used at home. Continue reading “Care in the Digital Age”

Four misconceptions around depression

“These are truly extraordinary times. We know that when people are experiencing something new and unfamiliar to them, it can cause many people to also experience stress and anxiety among other mental health challenges,” remarked the Hon. Michael Tibollo, Associate minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “These stressors become a lot for a person to manage on their own – even with the support of their family and friends.”

As Tibollo rightly pointed out, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the concerns around brain health, making it more important than ever for mental health and wellness to be discussed more broadly. This offers people an opportunity to speak and share without fear of stigma and make use of tools and supports readily available to make informed decisions about their overall health in partnership with health care providers.

Here are four misconceptions experts would like to clarify, for you to better understand depression. Continue reading “Four misconceptions around depression”

Using A Patient-Centered Approach

 

Our health system requires that we ensure our research is relevant to the needs of patients and their families/caregivers, while empowering and supporting patients as partners.   Indeed research ought to be the standard-of-care with the goal of continuous improvement. Partnerships in this virtuous cycle of improvement will generate increased knowledge and tools for self-management of health and lead to better quality evidence that reaches the community faster.

Continue reading “Using A Patient-Centered Approach”

Brain-CODE – An Engine for Collaboration

The Ontario Brain Institute (OBI)  builds collaborations between Ontario neuroscientists so that they can combine their diverse expertise and resources to better understand brain disorders and translate these discoveries into new tools and treatments. Continue reading “Brain-CODE – An Engine for Collaboration”

Your Questions Answered: Neurodevelopmental Disorder Priority Setting Partnership

We asked people living with neurodevelopmental disorders, their families, friends, carers, and healthcare professionals to list questions they had about diagnosis, therapies, care, and other interventions for neurodevelopmental disorders. After receiving about 1300 questions from 300 individuals across Ontario, we grouped them by topic, and checked against published research to see if they have already been answered.

Continue reading “Your Questions Answered: Neurodevelopmental Disorder Priority Setting Partnership”