Bringing Discoveries to the "Bedside"
Dr. Alan Menkis
Cardiovascular Health and Research in Manitoba (CHaRM)
WRHA Cardiac Sciences Program
Department of Surgery, University of Manitoba
Message from the Chairperson
The WRHA Cardiac Sciences Program has experienced significant growth and success in recent years. The Program is committed to achieving clinical and academic excellence by providing the highest standards in cardiac patient-centered care, education and research. Cardiac patients have clearly benefited from this shared vision and the substantial investments made in our people, infrastructure, processes and partnerships.
The fact that heart disease affects more Canadians than any other illness, raises public expectations and the need for meaningful solutions. Opportunities to improve accessibility, patient satisfaction, workforce planning, resource management and value-for-money are ever present. Our increased collaboration, both internally and externally, is essential to achieving these goals.
Cardiac research is a fundamental component of this vision. Considerable progress has been made with the recruitment of internationally recognized clinician researchers, new research infrastructure, research staffing and increased multidisciplinary research activities. One of the driving forces behind this positive momentum is the Cardiovascular Health and Research in Manitoba (CHaRM) group. CHaRM provides a forum for discussion, promotion and collaboration for basic science, clinical outcomes and translational research in Cardiac Sciences. CHaRM members and partner organizations include: cardiac surgery, cardiology, cardiac anesthesia, cardiac intensive care, cardiac rehabilitation, the Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Nursing, St. Boniface Research Centre, I.H. Asper Clinical Research Institute, National Research Centre, Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences and Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, among others.
A tremendous amount has been accomplished in basic science and clinical research including several Winnipeg-based clinical trials, participation in multicenter clinical trials, the establishment of three laboratories, hiring of technologists, students and research support staff as well as the creation of a heart failure database. Combined research funding for cardiac sciences researchers is now in the multi-million dollar range and continues to grow.
Several important peer-reviewed grants were also awarded to cardiac sciences investigators from: the Heart and Stoke Foundation, Manitoba Health Research Council, Manitoba Medical Service Foundation, Dr. Paul T. Thorlakson Fund, University of Manitoba Research Grants Program and Rudy-Falk Clinician Scientist Fund. This includes $1.25 million from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) for a joint National Research Council (NRC) and Cardiac Sciences Program research initiative. In addition, Cardiac Sciences physicians, nurses, residents, pharmacists and other health care professionals have generated a substantial number of publications, abstracts and conference presentations. In fact, the number of Cardiac Sciences submissions accepted at the Canadian Cardiovascular Society’s annual conference has more than quadrupled in the last four years.
We look forward to building upon this success and continuing to deliver excellent patient-centered cardiac care, research and education to the people of Winnipeg, the province of Manitoba and surrounding regions. We are grateful to our cardiac patients, their families, physicians, staff members, researchers and partners for making this all possible.