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Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis


  • Evaluating public and patient engagement ‘impacts’ in the health system the topic of Oct. 23 CHEPA seminar

    18 Oct 2019

    Julia Abelson

    As efforts to actively involve patients, family members and the broader public in health research and health system decision-making have grown, attention is turning to the evaluation of these efforts, including the assessment of their impact. 

    In “Evaluating the ‘impacts’ of public and patient engagement in the health system: Concepts, approaches and tools,” Julia Abelson will discuss key concepts and approaches to evaluation and impact assessment in the public and patient engagement field, drawing attention to potentially competing goals, epistemological entry points and methodological challenges.

    Dr. Abelson is a professor in the Department of Health Research, Methods, Evidence & Impact (HEI), and an associate member of the Department of Political Science. She is also the Director of the Health Policy PhD program and a member of CHEPA.

    The seminar will be held on Wednesday Oct. 23, 2019, from 12:30 to 1:30 pm in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend. It will also be accessible online, using Webex. To join remotely, copy and paste the following link into your browser. The password is CHEPAseminar.


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  • Dr. John Lavis elected CAHS fellow

    20 Sep 2019

    CHEPA member Dr. John Lavis, director of the McMaster Health Forum, has been made a fellow in the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS).
    Photo of John Lavis
    Fellows are chosen by peer review, and membership is considered one of the highest honours for members of Canada's health sciences community. For more information, click here.

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  • Seminar will review results of multi-disciplinary McConnell/CIHR study

    11 Sep 2019

    Jeremiah Hurley

    The results of a study commissioned by the McConnell  Foundation and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) to look at options to enhance investments in health and social programs using four case studies in the areas of mental health, child and youth health, food security, and intergenerational trauma will be presented at CHEPA’s first seminar of the academic year on September 18 by Dr. Jerry Hurley, (pictured) Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences & Professor of Economics, and Dr. Jean-Eric Tarride, CHEPA Director, McMaster Chair in Health Technology Management & Professor of Health Technology Assessment.

    The presentation, entitled: "Spurring Health and Social Investment: Asset Recognition for Investments in Prevention and Early Intervention," will take place in CRL-B119 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. All are welcome to attend.

    It will also be streamed and recorded online, using WebEx. The password is CHEPAseminar. To participate remotely, copy and paste this link into your browser:

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  • Manski talk on kidney transplant outcomes applies economics to decision-making for doctors

    28 Aug 2019

    Dr. Charles ManskiEconomist Charles Manski of Northwestern University will give a special seminar on Thursday Sept. 12 on the topic: “Predicting Kidney Transplant Outcomes with Partial Knowledge of HLA Mismatch.

    This talk is an application of the ideas Dr. Manksi presented last year at a CHEPA-sponsored short-course entitled “Techniques to Inform Development of Clinical Guidelines and Treatment Choice” and which inform his book: Patient Care under Uncertainty:  How cutting-edge economics can improve decision-making methods for doctors. 

    The seminar, sponsored by McMaster’s Department of Economics and CHEPA, will take place on Thursday, September 12 from 3-4:30 p.m. in room CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    It will also be available online through Webex. The password is Manskiseminar.  To connect, copy and paste this link into your browser:

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  • Palliative care in humanitarian crises zones

    23 Aug 2019

    Lisa SchwartzResearch by CHEPA's Dr. Lisa Schwartz and members of the Humanitarian Health Ethics (HHE) research group on palliative care needs in crisis zones was featured recently in an article published for World Humanitarian Day on August 19.

    Schwartz, who holds McMaster's Arnold L. Johnson Chair in Health Care Ethics, notes that some patients can't be saved by rescuers in humanitarian crises.

    The group's research revealed a need to develop guidelines and training aimed at better preparing humanitarian health care teams for palliative care needs in the field. To read the article, click here.
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  • New research seeks to identify effective ways to improve road safety for seniors, cyclists

    13 Aug 2019

    Michel Grignon

    The effectiveness of interventions geared to helping municipal and provincial governments improve road safety for cyclists and pedestrians – particularly seniors – is the focus of new research to be led by former CHEPA director Michel Grignonfunded by a one-year $40,000 MIRA/Labarge Centre for Mobility in Aging (LCMA) Catalyst Grant.

    Walking is both an important source of physical activity and a primary mode of transportation for many seniors, who are also the main victims of collisions involving pedestrians. Better access to safer streets and sojourning improves mobility, social life and interactions, which leads to a healthier lifestyle, autonomy, social capital, and a better quality of life.

    Other CHEPA members involved in the research as co-investigators are Emmanuel Guindon and Jean-Éric Tarride. Additional co-investigators are Niko Yiannakoulias, Faculty of Science (Geography), Tara Marshall, Faculty of Social Sciences (Health, Aging & Society; Social psychology) and Mohamed Hussein, Faculty of Engineering(Civil Engineering).

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  • 2019 Labelle Lecture will be presented by Dr. Jennifer Walker

    19 Jul 2019

    Dr. Jennifer WalkerThe 28th annual Labelle Lecture will be presented  on Thursday, November 14,  2019 on the topic of Indigenous Data and Research by Dr. Jennifer Walker, associate professor, School of Rural and Northern Health at Laurentian University, who holds a Tier II Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health. She is also the Indigenous Lead for the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences

    The annual Labelle Lecture was created 28 years ago to honour Roberta Labelle, who was one of the founding members of CHEPA. Her death in 1991 was unexpected, and occurred when broad recognition for her research in health economics was just starting to emerge. 

    Dr. Walker has Indigenous (Haudenosaunee) family roots and is a member of the Six Nations of the Grand River. She has a PhD in Community Health Sciences (Epidemiology specialization) from the University of Calgary and a BSc from the University of Waterloo.

    This presentation provides a comprehensive overview of the guiding frameworks used to assert Indigenous data governance best practices, including the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action, and the First Nations Information Governance Centre’s principles of Ownership, Control, Access, and Possession (OCAP ®). 

    The lecture will take place on Thursday Nov. 14, 2019 from 3 pm to 4:30 pm in HSC 1A4, followed by a reception in the Farncombe Atrium.

    The lecture will be preceded by the graduate student conference New Frontiers in Health Policy, which this year looks at drivers for change in health services and policy. Registration is free, and is open until November 1. For more information about the conference, click here.


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  • Read the summer edition of the CHEPA News

    03 Jul 2019

    The summer 2019 edition of the CHEPA News is out! Click here to view.

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  • MSF conference will feature CHEPA research

    03 May 2019

    Lisa-SchwartzCHEPA’s Lisa Schwartz and the Humanitarian Health Ethics (HHE) Research Group will be playing a prominent role next week in London, England at the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Scientific Days 2019, which is sponsored by the Royal Society of Medicine.

     The full event will be live-streamed online (

    Before the conference begins, Schwartz, who holds McMaster’s Arnold L. Johnson Chair in Health Care Ethics and is a member of the MSF Ethics Review Board, will give a pre-conference workshop presentation about ethical research collaborations.

    On May 9, she will chair a session at the full conference about “Power, Participation and People,” while the McMaster team’s research co-ordinator Rachel Yantzi (a soon-to-be HRM doctoral student) will present research entitled  “Nothing in the world can serve those people like palliative care: qualitative analysis of refugee and provider experiences in Jordan, Rwanda and Bangladesh.”

    The HHE group will also have poster presentations about two studies:  “Aid when there’s ‘nothing left to offer’: A study of palliative and supportive care during international public health crises (Pall-IPHC).” and “Isolation, quarantine and research in Ebola management: A comparative study of perceptions between communities, outbreak control teams and researchers (EVD-IQR)”, both of which were funded by funded by Elrha’s Research for Health in Humanitarian Crises (R2HC) Programme.

    Other investigators on those studies who have links to McMaster are Carrie Bernard, Sonya de Laat, Laurie Elit, Leigh-Anne Gillespie, Elysée Nouvet, and Julia Pemberton.

    See the conference agenda at

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  • Ellen Amster honoured for outstanding service to McMaster

    25 Apr 2019

    ellen amster sized

    ​CHEPA's Ellen Amster is the 2019 recipient of the McMaster University Faculty Association (MUFA) Award for Outstanding Service.

    The Awards committee, made up of faculty, librarians, and students, said it was “particularly impressed by (Amster’s) significant contributions” to McMaster and that she has enhanced the reputation of the university in her work as the Hannah Chair in the History of Medicine, which straddles two Faculties – Health Sciences and Humanities, “contributing to teaching, service, and scholarship in both.”

    The committee cited Amster’s “innovative” work in establishing a History of Medicine and Medical Humanities web portal, which “brings together libraries, archives, museum collections, digital exhibits, digitized documents, medical blogs, and grant information from Canada and the world and which we understand has now become a research resource allowing accessibility of history to all students,” as among the achievements leading to the award.

    Amster also organized the History of Medicine Seminar Series, launched a new course entitled  “Bodies & Bodies Politic: From Public Health to Global Health” and also offered the Morocco Program in Maternal Health, bridging disciplines and faculties.

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  • Nominate a promising researcher to give the 28th Labelle Lecture

    03 Apr 2019

    The Labelle Lectureship Committee is seeking nominations by May 15 for a promising junior health services researcher — a rising star in the field — to be the 2019 Labelle Lecturer.

    The Labelle Lecturer can be from any country and should have the following characteristics:

    1. Is early in his/her career development (assistant or early associate level), and shows tremendous promise based on early research accomplishments.

    2. Is conducting research on a topic that challenges existing methods or accepted ideas in health research.

    3. Is capable of delivering a high-quality lecture that will be of interest to a multi-disciplinary audience of health researchers and decision-makers.

    4. Can spend one to two days at McMaster University to present a one-hour lecture,  followed by a reception; meet with faculty and students, and attend a dinner.

    Please submit nominations by May 15, 2019, to Emmanuel Guindon, Chair of the Labelle Lectureship Committee, at, and include the following information regarding the nominee: 

    • Full name, current position, link to their faculty page, and, when possible, an updated CV.

    • A brief paragraph describing the topic on which you believe the nominated individual could present the Labelle Lecture.

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  • Seminar to address the need for targeted health equity approaches for Indigenous people

    13 Mar 2019

    Dr. Bernice DowneyShape-shifting the health equity paradigm: a story of reclamation of Indigenous strength, resilience and well-being,” will be presented on March 20 by Dr. Bernice Downey, who holds cross appointments with McMaster’s School of Nursing and the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences and is also the Indigenous Health Lead for the Faculty of Health Science

    The seminar will examine the current Indigenous health policy environment, the need for targeted health equity approaches for Indigenous people, and 
    describe how an Indigenous ‘IND-equity’ framework can support efforts to address health inequality while respecting and incorporating unique factors related to Indigenous population health, including First Nations' diverse knowledge, practices and beliefs about well-being.

    The seminar will be held on Wednesday, March 20 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    It will also be available remotely online through WebEx. To join, click here or copy and paste the link below into your browser. The password is CHEPAseminar.

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  • Seminar will look at shifting views of public and patient involvement in Canadian drug assessment

    22 Jan 2019

    Katherine Boothe

    Research into shifting opinions about the legitimacy of scientific evidence and public participation when it comes to recommendations about what drugs the government should list for public drug coverage will be presented on Wednesday Feb. 27 by Katherine Boothe at CHEPA’s next seminar.

    Boothe is an associate professor in McMaster’s department of political science and a member of CHEPA.  In her seminar, entitled “Public and patient involvement in Canadian drug assessment: practitioner and participant views,” she will report on research in progress that investigates shifting ideas about legitimacy as they relate to scientific evidence and public participation in drug listing recommendations.

    It finds some important tensions between democratic conceptions of legitimacy that are linked to the inclusiveness of the policy process and which drive public and patient involvement, and moral-scientific conceptions of legitimacy that are linked to objectivity and specific norms of scientific evidence.

    The seminar will be held on Wednesday Feb 27 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    It will also be available remotely online through WebEx. To join, please copy and paste the link below into your browser. The password is: CHEPAseminar

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  • How much are parents willing to pay to reduce their child’s asthma symptoms?

    08 Jan 2019

    Irene MussioAt CHEPA's first seminar of the new year, Dr. Irene Mussio, a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Department of Economics at McMaster and the McMaster Institute for Research on Aging (MIRA), will present the results of a study that estimates parents' willingness to pay (WTP) for measures leading to a reduction in their child’s asthma symptoms.

    Mussio’s research interests lie in the intersection between health economics and experimental and behavioural economics. For this study, she used a model that combines revealed preference, contingent valuation, and beliefs.

    She says the results show that beliefs about asthma drive both household behaviours and valuation decisions.

    The seminar will be held on Wednesday Jan. 16 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    It will also be available remotely online through WebEx. To join, please copy and paste the link below into your browser. The password is: CHEPAseminar

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  • Issues in childhood obesity topic of CHEPA seminar

    11 Dec 2018

    Laura N. AndersonDr. Laura N. Anderson, PhD, will present CHEPA’s final seminar of 2018 on Wednesday Dec. 19, when she will talk about “Issues in childhood obesity: From measurement to evaluation of a population health intervention.”

    In her presentation she will:
    1. Evaluate the measurement of cardiometabolic risk and obesity subtypes in early childhood, and
    2. Describe the proposed analysis of a provincial population health intervention.

    The seminar will be held on Wednesday Dec. 19 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    It will also be available online through WebEx. To join, copy and paste the link below into your browser. The password is: CHEPAseminar


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  • CHEPA’s director named the inaugural McMaster Chair in Health Technology Management

    16 Nov 2018

    Jean-Éric Tarride

    Congratulations to CHEPA director Jean-Éric Tarride, who has been named the inaugural McMaster Chair in Health Technology Management.

    His five-year appointment was effective on July 1, 2018.

    As chair, he is responsible for helping lead the establishment of a world-class program in health technology management; contributing to the body of scholarship in the field through teaching or research; and participating in the education programs of the school of medicine.

    Jean-Éric says one of his priorities is to build partnerships inside and outside of McMaster to foster further collaboration among such partners as academics, physicians, industry, patient groups, regulatory and reimbursement authorities, payers and decision-makers.  “We tend to work in silos, and there is significant value to bringing everyone together.”

    Paul O’Byrne, dean and vice-president of McMaster’s Faculty of Health Sciences, said health technology management is an area of strength in the Faculty which will be strengthened through the new position.

    “Dr. Tarride is an experienced leader and researcher who will establish a tradition of excellence as chair,” he said.

    Holger Schünemann, chair of the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact, (HEI) added: “We are pleased that this chair has been established in HEI to support our strong work and history in health technology assessment and that Dr. Tarride has been selected for this role.”

    Jean-Éric is an associate professor in the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact (HEI); the director of the Programs for Assessment of Technology in Health (PATH) at The Research Institute at St. Joe’s Hamilton, St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton, and an associate member of the Department of Economics at McMaster. He is also the health technology assessment field leader within the Health Research Methodology (HRM) graduate program.  He has been the director of CHEPA since May 1, 2017.

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  • Seminar to look at developing a values-based framework for decision-making in health technology assessment

    06 Nov 2018

    Dr. Murray Krahn

    Dr. Murray Krahn,  the Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Health Technology Assessment and the Director of the Toronto Health Technology Assessment Collaborative, will present CHEPA’s next seminar on Wednesday, Nov. 14.  Please note the change of date from the original schedule.

    Dr. Krahn will present a seminar entitled “Developing a values-based Framework for Decision Making in Health (Technology Assessment)”,  which will draw on a research paper that several CHEPA and HEI members also contributed to. The paper is titled “Development of the Ontario decision framework: A values based framework for health technology assessment” and it can be found by clicking here

    While the Ontario Decision Framework is similar in some respects to frameworks used in HTA worldwide, it has some distinctive characteristics:

    • it is based on an explicit set of social values;
    • HTA paradigms (evidence-based medicine, economics and bioethics/social science) are used to aggregate decision attributes, and
    • it is rooted in a theoretical framework of optimal decision-making, rather than one related to broad social goals, such as health or welfare maximization

    Dr. Krahn will discuss the development of the framework and its implications for HTA.

    The seminar will be held on Wednesday November 14, 2018 from 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    If you are unable to attend in person, you are welcome to participate remotely online, using WebEx. To join the seminar online, copy and paste this link into your browser:

    The password is CHEPAseminar.

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  • Post-doctoral fellow will study flu vaccine incentives

    01 Nov 2018

    CHEPA offers a belated welcome to Dr. Irene Mussio, who began a two-year post-doctoral fellowship under the supervision of Dr. Jeremiah Hurley in September at McMaster’s Department of Economics, and the McMaster Institute for Research on Aging (MIRA).

    Mussio, an experimentalist whose research focuses on behavioural economics with applications to health contexts, holds a PhD from the University of Massachusetts – Amherst. She is also a member of the McMaster Decision Science Lab (McDSL) and a degree 2 researcher at the Departamento de Economia at the Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la Republica.

    Her previous research included a field experiment that examined an intervention designed to increase the uptake of flu shots among university students. As a MIRA fellow at McMaster, she will extend that work to seniors. In particular, she will try to understand the way that information flows through small-sized networks contribute to vaccination decisions, and to change the misinformation about flu vaccines.

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  • CIHR 2018 post-doctoral fellowships awarded to 2 researchers with links to CHEPA

    23 Oct 2018

    Dr. Iwona Bielska, supervised by Kelly Cimek of the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) and CHEPA’s Dr. Jean-Éric Tarridehas been awarded $155,000, including a contribution from the LHIN, over two years for her project entitled “Evidence-based strategic directions to reduce emergency department patient wait times within the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Local Health Integration Network (HNHB LHIN).”  For more information about Bielska's research project, click here.

    Dr. Matt Leyenaar , who is supervised by Dr. William Krizmanich and Dr. Andrew Costahas been awarded $35,000 over one year for his research project “Common assessments for repeated paramedic encounters: Evaluating care planning in community paramedicine.” For more information about Leyenaar's research project, click here.
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  • Home care policies and practices the topic of CHEPA's next seminar

    10 Oct 2018

    Photo of Andrew CostaHome Care: Policy and Practice in a Changing Health System” is the topic of CHEPA’s next seminar, which will be presented on Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018 by Dr. Andrew Costa, Assistant Professor and Schlegel Chair in Clinical Epidemiology & Aging at McMaster’s Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact (HEI).

    This presentation will provide an overview of the changing polices and practices in home care, focusing on Ontario, and describe epidemiological research in home care that demonstrate capacity challenges, particularly for chronic disease management. Costa will also guess at what the future holds, if only to stimulate debate and discussion.

    The seminar will take place on Wednesday, October 17, from 12:30 to1:30 p.m. in CRL-B119. All are welcome to attend.

    If you are unable to attend in person you are welcome to participate remotely online, using WebEx. To join the seminar online, copy and paste the link below into your browser. The password is CHEPAseminar.

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