MSSU Annual Workshop takes place in Charlottetown

On May 1 & 2, 2017, the Maritime SPOR SUPPORT Unit (MSSU) held its Annual Workshop in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island (PEI). The workshop brought together over 70 MSSU employees, committee members, and patient advisors with the overarching aim to engage and inform on Maritime-wide activities, accomplishments, and ongoing priorities.

Activities kicked off with opening remarks from Dr. Kim Critchley, Deputy Minister of Health and Wellness, PEI, Dr. Adrian Levy, Nominated Principal Investigator, MSSU, and Dr. Juergen Krause, Principal Investigator, MSSU PEI. Their remarks were followed by the exciting debut of a newly-created video on patient-oriented research.

Over the course of day one, participants were provided with an overview of priority setting activities and project highlights from New Brunswick (NB), Nova Scotia (NS), and PEI, and were updated on important regional initiatives. Projects highlighted on day one focused on outcomes in older adults with isolated hip fractures in NB, details about the recently launched Nova Scotia Health Atlas, and drivers of high cost healthcare usage on PEI.

Nancy Mason MacLellan, Manager, Major Initiatives, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) provided an overview of Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) initiatives and activities. MSSU’s Education Coordinator, Stephanie Mason, shared an update on the pilot of the SPOR Foundations in Patient-Oriented Research Curriculum. The morning’s activities wrapped up with independent Patient Advisor, Analyst, and Co-Chair meetings, while remaining attendees participated in a Capacity Development & Training focus group.

In the afternoon, participants divided into predetermined groups to each discuss one of four projects currently under development at the MSSU. Groups were tasked with developing plans for their projects in the areas of patient engagement, data requirements, and knowledge translation. Day one ended after the groups reconvened to discuss accomplishments and recommendations stemming from the planning activity. 

Day two began with concurrent meetings of the Advisory Committee, joint Provincial Advisory Committees, and MSSU staff. The goal of these meetings was to develop speaking points for a final full group discussion focused on renewal and planning for the future of the MSSU. This final discussion was an engaging conclusion to the productive two-day workshop.