Report to our community 2020-21

Foundation and Research Institute Highlights

Transforming long-term care, during and beyond COVID-19

The Bruyère Research Institute is working to change the future of long-term care through a number of projects that ensure research findings are being incorporated into care. In response to the challenges faced during COVID-19, our researchers are exploring changes to industrial design to improve infection prevention and control in residential spaces, as well as evaluating how to safely bring family and caregivers into homes as designated care partners. Other teams supported challenges to palliative care needs, quality of life for residents at end-of-life, and medication management.

New fundraising initiatives: Catch the Ace and 50-50 Staff Lottery making a big impact at Bruyère

In late 2020, the Bruyère Foundation launched two lotteries that are helping to fund patient care and advance research and innovation at Bruyère. With combined ticket sales approaching $1 million, these two programs allow staff and supporters to win big while giving back to our community at the same time. Catch the Ace is a progressive, multiple-draw raffle. A total of 43 weekly winners collectively won over $165k, and one lucky jackpot winner received over $265,000! The 50/50 staff lottery continues to spur engagement and excitement among employees. A total of 26 prizes have been won and, every pay day, participants have a chance to win while giving back to our mission. A win-win!

Predictive risk calculators support health and care planning

In the past year, our researchers released two predictive risk tools for dementia and elder-Life, focused on an older adult's risk of dementia and how long those who are frail may live. Risk calculators, developed through big data research, are valuable tools in understanding brain health or end-of-life trajectories, helping patients and families make preventative changes or adjustments to their care plans.

Elves for Elders bringing magic to our campuses

As our response to the pandemic evolved, we knew that 2020 would be a challenging holiday season for many in our community. To help bring magic to our campuses over the holiday season, the Bruyère Foundation launched the Elves for Elders program. For each $25 donation made, a gift was delivered to someone in need. Thanks to our generous community and our sponsors Phoenix Homes and Corporate Furniture Group, close to 400 gifts were delivered to patients, residents, and tenants across our campuses. 

Our research response to COVID-19

Dr. Kumanan Wilson, Innovation Advisor at Bruyère, received COVID-19 Immunity Task Force funding to explore existing immunity tracking solutions and evaluate the ethical, legal, and policy implications of vaccine passports in Canada. Amy Hsu, PhD, is spearheading a Pan-Canadian study of the immune response of workers and residents in long-term care homes. The project, supported by $3.5 million from the COVID-19 Immunity Task Force, is a critical step in understanding the long-term immunity outcomes in the sector.

Recognizing our research talent



We welcomed Sarina Isenberg, PhD, as our new Bruyère Chair in Mixed Methods Palliative Care Research, alongside 18 new investigators with expertise supporting Bruyère’s service programs. Several of our investigators were recognized through Clinical Research Chair appointments with the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Medicine as well as a University Research Chair, collectively focusing on palliative care, primary care, health access and equity, and digital health.


Strengthening local and global partnerships

In the past year, the Bruyère Research Institute formalized partnerships with Carleton University and Best Buy Health to focus on age-tech research initiatives. On a global front, the Bruyère Research Institute announced we would once again house the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Knowledge Translation and Health Technology Assessment for Health Equity, supporting multiple contributions to the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing goals.