Interventional - Educational/Policy
For patients who have had a myocardial infarction (MI) and coronary artery disease, guidelines recommend cardiac rehabilitation services and the long‐term use of cardiac medications to reduce the risk of recurrent cardiovascular events. These treatments are proven to improve quality of life and reduce the risk of repeat heart attacks or death among persons who have already had one heart attack.
However, research shows that many people who have had a heart attack do not stick with these treatments and therefore cannot benefit from them.
The ISLAND-ACS study was a quality improvement research program that sought to understand the impact of low-cost interventions that could be readily implemented at scale by entire health systems or organizations wishing to improve adherence to proven treatments.
Specifically, the trial tested whether providing Ontario‐based patients (and their health professionals) with repeated educational reminders delivered via post and phone will help improve the medication adherence and attendance at cardiac rehabilitation.
The trial team partnered in this project with health system decision makers who have an interest in using the results to create standard operating procedures that could benefit patients across the province.
Furthermore, ISLAND-ACS has the potential to inform how other health databases could be used to improve health system performance.
Co-Principal Investigator was Noah Ivers, at the Women’s College Hospital in Toronto, Canada.
Interventional - Educational/Policy
Pragmatic RCT, blinded outcome assessment
2015 - 2017
JD Schwalm is a Principal Investigator in the Knowledge Translation and Health Systems research program at PHRI, an Associate Professor, Department of Medicine (cardiology) at McMaster University, and an interventional cardiologist at Hamilton Health Sciences. He has published more than 50 peer-reviewed scientific papers and book chapters.
He completed medical school, internal medicine residency, and cardiology fellowship training at McMaster University, Ontario, followed by an interventional cardiology fellowship at McMaster and further training in that field at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. He is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, with certification in internal medicine and cardiology.
Tara McCready, PhD, oversees a variety of collaborative programs at PHRI, and serves as Project Manager for PHRI research studies and registries.
She was recruited to PHRI as a Program Director for the Canadian Network and Centre for Trials Internationally (CANNeCTIN), a national network funded by the CIHR/CFI Clinical Research Initiative program to improve the prevention and treatment of cardiac and vascular diseases and diabetes.
Previously the Executive Director of the Canadian Maternal, Infant, Child and Youth Research Network, Tara holds a PhD in Biochemistry and a MBA in Technology Commercialization from the University of Alberta.
Senior Reseach Coordinator
Jennifer Cunningham has more than 20 years’ experience working in research at PHRI. Starting with a few months assisting in research accounting in the then CCC Project Office in 1998, she began her PHRI career with study teams in 2000. Since then, Jennifer has had many roles at PHRI, from data management to her current role in senior coordination; and has worked on and managed multiple studies, from large international cardiovascular, national gastrointestinal, to policy changes and vulnerable/marginalized people studies within our own local community.
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