Canada's Economic Action Plan

Canada's Economic Action Plan

October 25, 2013 11:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports an Innovative Health Care Solution

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Oct. 25, 2013) - Today, the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), participated in the Applied Research Day at George Brown College. Minister Goodyear discussed how the Government of Canada's investment in innovative software will help Canadians, their families and their medical teams gain quick access to all of their health records using cloud-based tools.

Announced by Minister Goodyear on September 12, 2012, the Connected Health and Wellness Project is a technology platform containing an integrated suite of compatible technologies and apps designed to improve the health of Canadians. This project will allow patients to access and share their health records with their family, friends and care teams, including a health coach, to collaboratively manage their health and wellness. This technology will allow hospitals, physicians and other healthcare professionals to access and update this information on an ongoing basis. It is also positioning southern Ontario as a leader in advancing health coaching, which is intended to help Canada and other countries around the world find new ways to decrease healthcare costs.

FedDev Ontario's investment in the Connected Health and Wellness Project is helping to create the conditions necessary to make southern Ontario's businesses and not-for-profit institutions global leaders in the development and delivery of integrated electronic healthcare software.

The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector also received significant support October 18, 2013, when Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that Canada and the European Union (EU) have reached an agreement in principle on a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement which will significantly boost commercial ties between the two partners, and create jobs and long-term economic growth and prosperity. This deal will have a significant impact on the ICT sector in southern Ontario.

"Today's event demonstrates how great ideas can be applied, bringing about transformational change," said Minister Goodyear. "Our investment in the Connected Health and Wellness Project will bring integrated health and wellness solutions to new markets at home and abroad, creating new jobs and helping Canadians better manage their health using innovative technology developed in southern Ontario."

FedDev Ontario's contribution of up to $15,549,290 through the Technology Development Program will enable the Connected Health and Wellness Project to bring together 17 private sector, academic and not-for-profit partners. In addition to federal funding, this project has leveraged more than $23 million in private-sector investments.

"With its important contribution of healthy recipes for diverse communities, as part of its Applied Research Day, George Brown College is playing an integral role in the Connected Health and Wellness Project's commitment to people-centred health using e-health technology and behaviour change to help more people live healthier, longer," says York University's Faculty of Health Dean Harvey Skinner.

"George Brown College is very pleased to be part of the Connected Health Wellness Project. Its success is a testament to the advantages of colleges, universities and industry working together on applied research," said Robert Luke, Vice-President, Research and Innovation, George Brown College. "Not only do our students gain valuable experience that prepares them for the workplace, but our partners, and in this case patients, benefit from the creativity and expertise of our students, faculty and staff."

Created in 2009, FedDev Ontario supports the southern Ontario economy by building on the region's strengths and creating opportunities for jobs and economic growth. In Budget 2013, the Government of Canada demonstrated its continued commitment to workers, families and communities in southern Ontario with the renewal of FedDev Ontario. Economic Action Plan 2013 provides $920 million over five years for the Agency, starting on April 1, 2014. As part of the renewal, FedDev Ontario will be allocating $200 million over five years for a new Advanced Manufacturing Fund in Ontario. To learn more, please visit www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca or call 1-866-593-5505.

As outlined by the Prime Minister, the Government of Canada remains focused on what Canadians care most about: their families, the safety of our streets and communities, their pride in being a citizen of this country, and their personal financial security.

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IF THERE IS A DISCREPANCY BETWEEN ANY PRINTED VERSION AND THE ELECTRONIC VERSION OF THIS NEWS RELEASE, THE ELECTRONIC VERSION WILL PREVAIL.

This news release is available online at: www.feddevontario.gc.ca.

BACKGROUNDER

Contribution to the Connected Health and Wellness Project

On September 12, 2012, FedDev Ontario announced a non-repayable contribution of up to $15,549,290 to the Connected Health and Wellness Project through its Technology Development Program.

This project is focused on building a network to deliver health and wellness tools using a cloud-based software platform. The final product, an integrated suite of electronic healthcare software, will offer users an all-in-one health and wellness management solution that will provide patients with a consolidated view of their electronic medical records and personal health records from various healthcare providers.

This project has two main goals: to create the software applications to support integrated online health tools and to build an educational platform for healthcare professionals that will form the foundation for new standards in health coaching. This is an emerging profession that integrates the use of online tools with the practice of health promotion, behaviour change, disease prevention, and chronic disease management.

This investment will accelerate the development and commercialization of technologies being developed under the Connected Health and Wellness Project. The project is expected to benefit Canada's healthcare system by improving patient outcomes through personalized health services and more efficient use of medical resources. It is also expected to lead to economic growth in the healthcare and information and communication technology sectors in southern Ontario and across the globe.

The Connected Health and Wellness Project is being led by the following three main partners:

  • York University, a leader in sustained health behaviour change, is leading a new training program and professional standard for the emerging health coach profession.
  • NexJ Systems, with expertise in enterprise software and people-centered health solutions, is integrating all components of the project with its robust Connected Wellness Platform.
  • McMaster University, renowned for research intensity innovation, has developed and is the lead organization for OSCAR, an electronic health record, and MyOSCAR, a personal health record managed by the patient. These technologies will be further developed through the project and will be core components of the new people-centred, technology-enabled health and wellness system.

The following is the complete list of partners in this project:

Private sector partners Post-secondary institute partners Not-for-profit research partners
NexJ Systems Inc.
OSCARService Inc.
PryLynx Corporation
Rogers Health Care
BlackBerry
Trivaris
Tyze Personal Networks
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (an affiliate of Harvard Medical School)
York University
McMaster University
Centennial College
George Brown College
Seneca College
Centre for Global eHealth Innovation (University Health Network)
North York General Hospital
Southlake Regional Health Centre
Black Creek Community Health Centre

For more details on the project and its partners, please visit: www.chwp.org.

Technology Development Program

The Technology Development Program is designed to strengthen southern Ontario's economy by providing financial support to accelerate bringing innovative and transformative technologies to the global market.

Through the program, FedDev Ontario is investing in projects that will significantly contribute to the development of globally-competitive, market-ready technologies with the potential to develop new business opportunities or benefits for an industry, sector or region in southern Ontario.

The Technology Development Program encourages the private and public sectors to collaborate on innovative, breakthrough technologies that are one to seven years from market.

Contact Information

  • Stephanie Thomas
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
    613-943-7599

    Media Relations
    FedDev Ontario
    416-954-6652