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Canadian Medical Association funds HELP MD, a study on physician wellness


Physician, heal thyself – a new project is taking proverb to practice in a comprehensive examination of physician wellness. With a $420,000 contribution from the Canadian Medical Association (CMA), Dr. Peter Tanuseputro and Dr. Manish Sood will be leading a data-driven research initiative called Health Evaluation and Liveliness for Physicians through Meaningful Data, or HELP MD.

HELP MD will be a series of studies focusing on the health and wellbeing of physicians, as well as how physician health impacts clinical practice, by amalgamating experts and data at local, provincial, and national levels. Originally supported by the Bruyère Centre for Individualized Health, the HELP MD project links anonymized data from over 50,000 Ontarian physicians to ICES’s (formerly the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences) health databases.
Now, more than ever, the health of our doctors and care providers needs to be addressed, as stigma still remains in the medical field when it comes to accessing mental health services. The first study will be dedicated to physician mental health in Ontario, including examining rates of suicide, attempted suicide, and self-harm. Other studies will assess how physicians engage with their own doctors as patients and how physician health might be linked to patient health.
This initiative represents a meaningful way to open the conversation around physician health and wellness while using a data-driven approach to identify needs and solutions among healthcare professionals.

Dr. Peter Tanuseputro is an investigator at the Bruyère Research Institute, a physician-scientist at The Ottawa Hospital and ICES, and assistant professor at the University of Ottawa.
Dr. Manish Sood is a physician-scientist and research chair The Ottawa Hospital, adjunct scientist at ICES, and associate professor at the University of Ottawa