Facilitating Research

SPOR is dedicated to creating environments that are conducive to patient-oriented research all across Canada. Because research funding by itself is only one piece of the puzzle, through SPOR, the following centers of expertise have been established at the provincial, territorial and national level to support and build capacity to conduct patient-oriented research and to use the results from this research to inform learning health systems:


These provincial/territorial-based organizations provide access to data and training to researchers, clinicians, patients, and policy makers interested in conducting patient-oriented research.

SPOR Evidence Alliance

This alliance, led by Dr. Andrea Tricco and including more than 175 members across Canada, is creating a coordinating centre to which knowledge-users can submit health research questions, which will then be matched to experts who will conduct systematic reviews and knowledge synthesis research to address the topic. The goal of the alliance is to respond to at least 100 questions over its five-year term of funding, conduct systematic reviews, develop guidelines, provide mentorship and training opportunities, and engage in knowledge translation to ensure health care providers have the evidence to provide patients with the right care at the right time.

SPOR National Training Entity (NTE)

This national training platform, based at the Université Laval and led by Dr. Annie LeBlanc, supports the capacity development needs and viewpoints of the patient-oriented research community. It facilitates the flow of emerging knowledge and best practices in patient-oriented research to SPOR stakeholders and communities in Canada.

SPOR Canadian Data Platform

The SPOR Canadian Data Platform (CDP), led by Dr. Kimberlyn McGrail and supported by provincial, territorial and federal partners, is working to simplify the process of accessing data that are held across the country to inform research and to ultimately improve health services and care to all Canadians. By reducing barriers to accessing data, the CDP enables researchers to conduct multi-jurisdictional, people and patient-oriented research more efficiently.

Data Access Support Hub: The Data Access Support Hub (DASH) offers a one-stop service for researchers to request access to data from more than one jurisdiction. Researchers can also browse the DASH website for resources on datasets and data access processes available across partner data centres.

The CDP and DASH services are supported by SPOR and partners across Canada. The CDP and DASH are led by Health Data Research Network Canada (HDRN Canada), a non-profit corporation that connects individuals and organizations across the country to share expertise, identify opportunities for collaboration, and foster innovation in ways to make data accessible to researchers, institutions, and government agencies across Canada.

Did you know ?

There are SUPPORT Units in 12 provinces and territories.

The “SUPPORT” stands for “Support for People and Patient-Oriented Research and Trials.”

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