New concept laboratory will advance
TORONTO -- Canada Health Infoway and the Centre for Global eHealth
Innovation have launched the “eHealth Collaboratory,” a new concept
laboratory designed to help improve technology’s ability to benefit
healthcare professionals and patients in Canada.
Infoway has invested $661,300 in startup costs for the Collaboratory.
Located in the Centre for Global eHealth Innovations’ facilities, the
Collaboratory will leverage the Centre’s technical, clinical and
usability (ease of use) expertise.
Collaboratory is a simulator of the future, where vendors, clinicians,
technology experts, policy makers and the public can work together to
find innovative ways to improve people’s health through information and
communication technologies,” said Dr. Alex Jadad
(pictured at left), director of the Centre for Global eHealth
The Collaboratory will focus on the use of electronic health record (EHR)
technology. Infoway and the Centre have issued a Request for Expression
of Interest (REOI), inviting vendors to join the Collaboratory and
participate in its first demonstration series which will focus on the
Physician’s Office of the Future.
“Today, there are still many disparate health information systems that
cannot communicate with one another. We’re helping to solve this problem
by encouraging collaboration amongst vendors, clinicians and technology
experts,” said Richard Alvarez, Infoway’s president and CEO.
The Physician’s Office of the Future will show what a physician’s office
will look like when equipped with leading-edge technology. Vendors who
respond to the REOI and join the Collaboratory will have a chance to
test their technology solutions in this environment and assess how they
work with complementary EHR systems.
This first demonstration series will be held in the fourth quarter of
2005. For more information on the REOI, please visit:
“The Collaboratory is a new concept -- we plan to work with
Collaboratory members to help the concept evolve in a way that meets the
needs of both vendors and their clients,” said Dennis Giokas, Infoway’s
chief technology officer.
With access to the state-of-the-art labs and the sophisticated
telecommunications and communications infrastructure of the Centre, the
Collaboratory will provide physical and virtual “environments” that
recreate real-life settings, such as the physician’s office.
Complete with furnishings, lighting, appropriate noise and space
limitations and staffed by trained actors and healthcare professionals,
the environments recreate clinical workflow, including interruptions and
Vendors who participate in the Collaboratory will receive a report
detailing the success of their technology along with recommendations for
improvement. Clients interested in healthcare technology solutions -–
including healthcare regions, hospitals and clinics -- can use the
demonstration environment to evaluate vendor products before purchasing
The goal is to make the Collaboratory self-sustaining through the
delivery of value-added services such as interoperability demonstrations
and usability assessments.
This is Infoway’s first investment under its Innovation and Adoption
Program, launched last year to support technology innovation and
adoption in clinical practice. The program will focus on the use of
emerging technologies in clinical practice which add new capabilities to
electronic health record solutions, and on initiatives which help
overcome adoption barriers for clinicians.
About Canada Health Infoway
Canada Health Infoway’s mission is to accelerate the development of
interoperable electronic health information systems across Canada. These
systems provide healthcare professionals with rapid access to complete
and accurate patient information, enabling better decisions about
treatment and diagnosis. The result is a
sustainable, more cost-efficient healthcare system offering improved
patient safety and better quality of care. Infoway is an independent,
not-for-profit corporation whose members are the federal, provincial,
and territorial deputy ministers of health. As of March 31, Infoway had
approved $320 million for 105 projects in every Canadian province and
About the Centre for Global eHealth Innovation
The Centre for Global eHealth Innovation’s facilities include 15,000
square feet of space located in the heart of Toronto’s technological,
academic and commercial core. The lab facilities of the Centre include a
state-of-the art Usability Laboratory and a Multi-Tasking Simulation
Laboratory exclusively dedicated to the study of eHealth innovations.
Labs are equipped with multi-media technologies, testing rooms with
observation space, and props and theatre staging sets that simulate
virtually any setting where health-related decisions are made (clinics,
hospital wards, operating theatres, pharmacies, emergency rooms, homes,
workplaces). Using the physical facilities of the Centre and its
powerful virtual infrastructure, technology experts, usability
professionals, research methodologists, project managers, knowledge
management specialists and end users (clinicians, members of the public,
policy-makers and administrators) work on diverse projects along with
partners and associates from across Canada and around the world,
building economies of scale to accelerate the transformation of the
health system in the information age.