BC SUPPORT Unit
The BC SUPPORT (Support for People & Patient-Oriented Research & Trials) Unit supports patient-oriented research throughout BC to answer research questions that matter to patients and improve health care.
We are one of 11 SUPPORT Units established across Canada as part of the Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR), a national initiative led by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). We partner with the provincial government, funding organizations, health authorities, universities, researchers, patients, health care providers and health system decision-makers to improve health care.
Patient-oriented research (POR) is:
- Done in partnership with patients
- Answers research questions that matter to patients
- Aims to improve health care and health outcomes for patients
Patient-oriented research brings together patients, researchers, health care providers and health system decision-makers.
Why patient-oriented research
Patients do better when they’re treated in facilities that are involved in research. When research is done in partnership with patients, their valuable experiences can improve care — building on the idea “nothing about me without me”.
I am a researcher and/or on a research team
Are you a researcher interested in conducting patient-oriented research? Find other people to collaborate with, and get access to tools, resources and information about patient-oriented research in BC.
I am a patient partner/potential patient partner
Patient partners are people who contribute to health research by sharing personal experience of a health issue, or their informal caregivers, including family and friends. We can help connect you with patient partner opportunities on research teams.
The BC SUPPORT Unit works to bridge the gap between research evidence and health care practice by:
- Providing patient-oriented research support services
- Strengthening and maintaining BC’s capacity in patient-oriented research
- Engaging stakeholders as active partners in both research and its use in health care practice and policy
Our work centres on:
- Data platforms and services
- Learning health systems
- Capacity development
- Patient engagement
Work will be grounded in equity, diversity and inclusion, sex- and gender-based analysis, and Indigenous health research.
The BC SUPPORT Unit is made possible through collaboration with BC Ministry of Health.
A provincial coordinating office supports patient-oriented research activities across BC. The office works in partnership with regional supports within Vancouver, Fraser, Interior, Northern and Vancouver Island health authorities.
Our Advisory Council
The BC SUPPORT Unit advisory council provides governance and oversight to the BC SUPPORT Unit. Committee members are nominated for their diverse skills and expertise. Members represent patients, health care providers, researchers and health system decision-makers.
Chair, BC SUPPORT Unit Advisory Council
Our Patient Partner Leadership Council
The Patient Partner Leadership Council is responsible for ensuring the patient partner community stays connected, and brings forward ideas that come from the partnership-ready network.
The Leadership Council is a team of five patient partners, one from each region of the province (Fraser, Interior, the North, Vancouver, and Vancouver Island) and the SUPPORT Unit Patient Engagement Lead.
Anni Rychtera (Interior region)
Kent Cadogan Loftsgard (Greater Vancouver region)
Sunny Loo (Island region)
Swapnil Shah (Fraser region)
Sherri Mytopher (Northern region)