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Volume 18, Issue 2, Summer/Fall 2018

Dean Eurich

Royal Society of Canada New Scholar, Dr. Dean Eurich

Please join us in congratulating Dean Eurich as one of the 52 new members elected to the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists. According to the Royal Society of Canada website: “RSC Fellows are men and women from all branches of learning who have made remarkable contributions in the arts, the humanities and the sciences, as well as in Canadian public life.”

Dean has been a long-time member of the ACHORD team, and we are so pleased that the Royal Society of Canada has recognized him for his outstanding work, not only in the scientific world but also his countless hours volunteering to coach his children’s sports teams.

To learn more on the Royal Society of Canada, please go to:

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Report from the Chair

Hello All! I hope everyone was able to take time off to enjoy the beautiful summer we had. Here is a quick update on what has been happening in the ACHORD Group since our last newsletter.

We said goodbye to students and post-doctoral fellows moving on to other opportunities in the past few months. Dax Rumsey and Ben Dubois both successfully completed their MSc oral examinations recently. Dax will continue with his position in Pediatric Rheumatology at the Stollery Hospital and Ben will be working for OKAKI Health Intelligence. Megan Highet and Arsene Zongo were both in Post-Doctoral Fellow positions; Megan accepted a position with Alberta Health Services in Calgary and Arsene accepted a position with Health Canada in Ottawa. We wish all of these former trainees all the best in their new positions.

We also welcomed some new students to ACHORD: Lilla Roy, Jiabi Wen, Vishal Sharma and Kristen Versluys. Lilla is coming to us from Sydney, Nova Scotia, to start her PhD working with Jeff; Jiabi moved from China, starting an MSc with Arto Ohinmaa; Vishal and Kristen started their MSc degrees last year but now that most of their courses are done, they will be dedicating more time to research activities under Dean Eurich’s supervision. Bios for these students are included later in this newsletter.

We also welcomed Cerina Lee to the ACHORD Team. Cerina is a graduate of the School of Public Health and she is working as a Research Assistant with Dean Eurich.

The ACHORD Retreat will be held on March 4 and 5, 2019, at Peter Lougheed Centre, U of A Campus. Please mark these dates in your calendar, noting that the retreat will be held on a Monday and Tuesday this year. As in the past, the ACHORD retreat will provide an opportunity for trainees to present work from ongoing projects, and for potential collaborations on new projects.

ACHORD members will be attending many conferences this fall: International Population Data Linkage Network (IPDLN) annual meeting and CASCH Conference both held in Banff; EuroQol Annual Plenary in Lisbon, Portugal; EASD conference in Berlin, Germany; Diabetes Canada in Halifax, Nova Scotia; ISOQOL in Dublin, Ireland; and ISPOR Europe in Barcelona, Spain.

This spring, we invited participants of the ABCD cohort study to complete Wave 4 of the ABCD Survey. The survey closed May 31, 2018. A total of 734 participants completed the survey; 69% submitted it online. Data entry is complete and we are finishing up the data cleaning. Our next steps include running some descriptive analyses and comparing responses to Waves 1, 2, and 3. Wave 5 is planned for January 2019. The ABCD survey is supported as part of the Diabetes Infrastructure for Surveillance, Evaluation and Research (DISER) project, which is a larger effort led by the Diabetes, Obesity and Nutrition Strategic Clinical Network (DON SCN) in Alberta Health Services (AHS). One of the plans for the DISER project is to examine the feasibility of linking survey data, like ABCD, with administrative health care utilization data within the data repositories in AHS.

The Alberta’s PROMs and EQ-5D Research and Support Unit (APERSU), based in the ACHORD offices, continues to grow as more people are aware of the EQ-5D tool and asking for our assistance. Visits have been made to Primary Care Networks (PCN’s) throughout the province to see where we can be of most assistance. Plans are underway for the 4th Annual APERSU End-User Meeting, which will be held October 11 and 12, 2018, at the Varscona Hotel in Edmonton.

I hope the information in our newsletter is informative, and if you have any questions about our activities, please do not hesitate to contact us. I look forward to updating you in December on ACHORD’s activities.


EMPATHY Trial Update

The Evaluation of routinely Measured PATient reported outcomes in HemodialYsis care (EMPATHY) Trial is a 12-month cluster randomized controlled trial that will determine the effects of routine measurement and reporting to care providers of patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) on patient-clinician communication for patients with chronic kidney disease undergoing hemodialysis.

EMPATHY has officially began implementation in the Northern Alberta Renal Program (NARP). Clinician education took place over the month of August with twenty 45-minute online in-services provided by the EMPATHY coordinator and a NARP clinical nurse educator. Remaining clinical nurse educator staff will follow up with their respective site staff to ensure nurses are trained. Training materials are also housed electronically for nurses to access and in EMPATHY resource binders on every site for any nurses that missed training.

Now that EMPATHY has launched, the next phase of EMPATHY activities will be providing ongoing site support. Each site will have an EMPATHY site lead that will act as a liaison between the site and the EMPATHY study team. Follow-up calls will be arranged on an on-going basis, beginning biweekly, to ensure that the site is successful in implementing the EMPATHY intervention.

Additionally, the EMPATHY team secured EuroQol funds for the implementation of a qualitative study to evaluate the EMPATHY trial that will be led by Jeff and Kara Schick-Makaroff, a qualitative researcher from the Faculty of Nursing. We are currently preparing an ethics application for this study and we aim to implement the qualitative study in March, 2019, half way through the EMPATHY trial. For this study we will interview patients and clinicians from all study arms on the effectiveness of the PROMs and treatment aids used in the EMPATHY intervention.

The Southern Alberta Renal Program (SARP) and the Ontario Renal Network (ORN) are also close to implementing the EMPATHY trial. SARP will begin piloting one site in early October, 2018, and then subsequently phase-in their sites every 2 months. All SARP sites will be implementing EMPATHY by March, 2019. The ORN has recruited and randomized 16 sites and has begun clinician education with the aim for implementation in early 2019.

Kristen Versluys

Meet the Student - Kristen Versluys

Training Program: MSc in Clinical Epidemiology, University of Alberta, School of Public Health

Kristen completed her BSc in Medical Laboratory Technology in 2015 through the University of Alberta and has been working as a Medical Lab Technologist at Sturgeon Community Hospital since - specializing in hematology, transfusion medicine and chemistry. It was working in healthcare and seeing the manifestation of disease first-hand that inspired her to play a more active role in improving patient outcomes through clinical research at the School of Public Health. Kristen is working on her Master of Science in Clinical Epidemiology part-time, supervised by Dr. Dean Eurich. This fall she is starting her research project investigating the long-term health outcomes and healthcare utilization among patients diagnosed with invasive pneumococcal disease in Alberta.

Vishal Sharma

Meet the Student - Vishal Sharma

Training Program: MSc in Clinical Epidemiology, University of Alberta, School of Public Health

Vishal opened up a pharmacy in rural Alberta in 2006 shortly after graduating with a B.Pharm from the University of Alberta. He has been active in the profession ever since having been granted Additional Prescribing Authorization from the Alberta College of Pharmacy and the Certified Diabetes Educator designation from Diabetes Canada. Vishal worked with the local PCN to help manage patients with chronic diseases.

After selling his pharmacy, Vishal entered the MSc Clinical Epidemiology program at the University of Alberta School of Public Health. His research will look at prescribing patterns of opioids and sedatives in Alberta under the supervision of Dr. Eurich. He also works part time at ASEBP in the Pharmacy Services Department.

Vishal leads an active lifestyle outside of school and work. He spends his time mountain biking and in the pool playing water polo. He also enjoys spending time in the kitchen.

Lilla Roy Photo

Meet the Student - Lilla Roy

Training Program: PhD in Health Services and Policy Research, University of Alberta, School of Public Health

Born and raised in the Maritimes, Lilla received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Laurentian University in 2008, and a Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of British Columbia in 2013. In between, and since then, Lilla has worked as a Registered Nurse in emergency departments across the country, in large and small centers of Nova Scotia, Ontario, British Columbia, and the Northwest Territories. Lilla’s masters research focused on measuring health utilities and preferences related to respiratory disease in infants. Lilla later worked in health technology assessment at SickKids, before returning to nursing practice. Most recently, Lilla has been working with the Nursing Department at Cape Breton University, in Nova Scotia. Lilla joined the research group this fall with an interest in the use of patient reported outcome measures (PROMs) in sub-populations. She will be working as a PhD student under the supervision of Dr. Jeff Johnson.


Meet the Student - Jiabi "Jacqueline" Wen

Training Program: MSc in Health Services and Policy Research, School of Public Health, University of Alberta

Jacqueline was born and raised in Hunan, China. Jacqueline graduated from Renmin University of China in 2018 with BSc in Mathematics and BEcon in Economics. During her summer internship in the Laboratory for Industrial and Applied Mathematics at York University, Jacqueline realized her interests were in health-related issues, aiming to focus on health economics in her Master’s degree. Jacqueline is now an MSc student in the Health Policy stream.

Jacqueline is happy to join APERSU and ACHORD, and hopes to explore the world in health academy with everyone here. Outside of study and research, Jacqueline loves cooking, singing and traveling.


ACHORD Seen and Heard

Recent Publications

Beka Q, Bowker S, Savu A, Kingston S, Johnson JA, Kaul P. Development of perinatal mental illness in women with gestational diabetes mellitus: a population-based cohort study. Can J Diabet 2018 42(4):350-355. PMID: 28943221.

Butalia S, Audibert F, Côté AM, Firoz T, Logan AG, Magee LA, Mundle W, Rey E, Rabi DM, Daskalopoulou SS, Nerenberg KA; Hypertension Canada. Hypertension Canada’s 2018 Guidelines for the Management of Hypertension in Pregnancy. Can J Cardiol 2018;34(5):526-531. PMID: 29731014.

Crick K, Al Sayah F, Ohinmaa A, Johnson JA. Responsiveness of the Anxiety/Depression Dimension of the 3- and 5- level versions of the EQ-5D in assessing mental health. Qual Life Res 2018;27(6):1625-1633. PMID: 29516342.

D'Silva A, Bebb G, Boyle T, Johnson ST, Vallance JK. Demographic and clinical correlates of accelerometer assessed physical activity and sedentary time in lung cancer survivors. Pschooncology 2018;27(3):1042-1049. PMID: 29226994.

D'Silva A, Gardiner PA, Boyle T, Bebb DG, Johnson ST, Vallance JK. Associations of objectively assessed physical activity and sedentary time with health-related quality of life among lung cancer survivors: A quantile regression approach. Lung Cancer 2018;119:78-84. PMID: 29656757.

Diabetes Canada Clinical Practice Guidelines Expert Committee, Sherifali D, Rabi DM, McDonald CG, Butalia S, Campbell DJT, Hunt D, Leung AA, Mahon J, McBrien KA, Palda VA, Banfield L, Sanger S, Houlden RL. Methods. Can J Diabetes 2018;42(3):338. PMID: 29650113.

Diabetes Canada Clinical Practice Guidelines Expert Committee, Lipscombe L, Booth G, Butalia S, Dasgupta K, Eurich DT, Goldenberg R, Khan N, MacCallum L, Shah BR, Simpson S. Pharmacologic Glycemic Management of Type 2 Diabetes in Adults. Can J Diabetes 2018;42(3)336. PMID: 29650116.

Eskin M, Eurich DT, Simpson SH. Impact of Drug Exposure Definitions on Observed Associations in Pharmacoepidemiology Research. J Popul Ther Clin Pharmacol 2018;25(1):e39-e52. PMID: 29949683.

Ghotra SK, Johnson JA, Qiu W, Newton A, Rasmussen C, Yager JY. Health-related quality of life and its determinants in pediatric arterial ischemic stroke survivors. Arch Dis Child 2018;103(10):930-936. PMID: 29519944.

Hopkins JJ, Skubleny D, Bigam DL, Baracos VE, Eurich DT, Sawyer MB. Barriers to the Interpretation of Body Composition in Colorectal Cancer: A Review of the Methodological Inconsistency and Complexity fo the CT-Defined Body Habitus. Ann Surg Oncol 2018;25(5):1381-1394. PMID: 29488190.

Jarman M, Mathe N, Ramazani F, Pakseresht M, Robson PJ, Johnson ST, Bell RC; APrON and ENRICH study teams. Dietary Patterns Prior to Pregnancy and Associations with Pregnancy Complications. Nutrients 2018;10(7). PMID: 30018227.

Lipscombe L, Booth G, Butalia S, Dasgupta K, Eurich DT, Goldenberg R, Khan N, MacCallum L, Shah BR, Simpson S. Erratum to “Pharmacologic Glycemic Management of Type 2 Diabetes in Adults” Canadian Journal of Diabetes 2018;42(S1):S88-S103. Can J Diabetes 2018;42(3):336. PMID: 29857811.

Marrie TJ, Tyrrell GJ, Majumdar SR, Eurich DT. Risk factors for pneumococcal endocarditis. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis 2018;37(2);277-280. PMID:29067623.

Marrie TJ, Tyrrell GJ, Majumdar SR, Eurich DT. Invasive pneumococcal disease in Northern Alberta, not a Red Queen but a dark horse. Vaccine 2018;36(21);2895-2990. PMID: 29685595.

McClure N, Al Sayah F, Ohinmaa A, Johnson JA. Minimally important difference of the EQ-5D-5L index score in adults with type 2 diabetes. Value in Health 2018;21(9):1090-1097. PMID: 30224114.

Nerenberg KA, Zarnke KB, Leung AA, Dasgupta K, Butalia S, McBrien K, Harris KC, Nakhla M, Cloutier L, Gelfer M, Lamarre-Cliche M, Milot A, Bolli P, Tremblay G, McLean D, Padwal RS, Tran KC, Grover S, Rabkin SW, Moe GW, Howlett JG, Lindsay P, Hill MD, Sharma M, Field T, Wein TH, Shoamanesh A, Dresser GK, Hamet P, Herman RJ, Burgess E, Gryn SE, Grégoire JC, Lewanczuk R, Poirier L, Campbell TS, Feldman RD, Lavoie KL, Tsuyuki RT, Honos G, Prebtani APH, Kline G, Schiffrin EL, Don-Wauchope A, Tobe SW, Gilbert RE, Leiter LA, Jones C, Woo V, Hegele RA, Selby P, Pipe A, McFarlane PA, Oh P, Gupta M, Bacon SL, Kaczorowski J, Trudeau L, Campbell NRC, Hiremath S, Roerecke M, Arcand J, Ruzicka M, Prasad GVR, Vallée M, Edwards C, Sivapalan P, Penner SB, Fournier A, Benoit G, Feber J, Dionne J, Magee LA, Logan AG, Côté AM, Rey E, Firoz T, Kuyper LM, Gabor JY, Townsend RR, Rabi DM, Daskalopoulou SS; Hypertension Canada. Hypertension Canada’s 2018 Guidelines for Diagnosis, Risk Assessment, Prevention, and Treatment of Hypertension in Adults and Children. Can J Cardiol 2018;34(5):506-525. PMID: 29731013.

Rewa OG, Eurich DT, Noel Gibney RT, Bagshaw SM. A modified Delphi process to identify, rank and prioritize quality indicators for continuous renal replacement therapy (CRRT) care in critically ill patients. J Crit Care 2018;47:145-152. PMID: 29990792.

Sherifali D, Rabi DM, McDonald CG, Butalia S, Campbell DJT, Hunt D, Leung AA, Mahon J, McBrien KA, Palda VA, Banfield L, Sanger S, Houlden RL. Erratum to “Methods”: Canadian Journal of Diabetes;2018;42(S1):S6-S9. Can J Diabetes 2018;42(3):338. PMID: 29857813.

Zhao H, Johnson JA, Al Sayah F, Soprovich A, Eurich DT. The association of self-efficacy and hospitalization rates in people with type-2 diabetes: a prospective cohort study. Diabetes Res Clin Prac 2018;143:113-119. PMID: 29990566.

Recent Presentations
Wozniak LA, Meneen K, Samanani S, Johnson JA, Eurich DT. Toward a better understanding of the organization of type 2 diabetes care in 6 First Nations communities in Alberta. Canadian Association for Health Services and Policy Research Annual Conference (CAHSPR), Montreal, QC, May 28-31, 2018.

Ye M, Robson PJ, Eurich DT, Vena JE, Xu JY, Johnson JA. Anthropometric changes and risk of diabetes: Are there differences between men and women? A longitudinal study of Alberta’s Tomorrow Project cohort. CPHA annual meeting, Montreal Quebec. May 28-31, 2018.

Ye M, Robson PJ, Eurich DT, Vena JE, Xu JY, Johnson JA. Systemic use of antibiotics and risk of diabetes in adults: A nested case-control study of Alberta’s Tomorrow Project. CPHA annual meeting, Montreal Quebec. May 28-31, 2018.

Sawyer MB, Hopkins J, Bigham D, Baracos V, Eurich DT, Eisenstat D. The impact of skeletal muscle and adipose tissue on long-term survival in patients with resectable colorectal cancer. 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting, taking place June 1-5, 2018 at the McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, Illinois.

Ye M, Vena JE , Xu JY, Robson PJ, Eurich DT, Johnson JA. Cross-validation of Drug Use Records in Two Pharmaceutical Databases: A Population-based Study of Alberta’s Tomorrow Project Cohort. 2018 IPDLN Conference, Banff Alberta, September 14 – 16, 2018.

Ye M, Vena JE , Xu JY, Robson PJ, Eurich DT, Johnson JA. Validating Self-reported Chronic Conditions in Alberta’s Tomorrow Project Cohort: Data Linkage to Administrative Healthcare Data. 2018 IPDLN Conference, Banff Alberta, September 14 – 16, 2018.


ACHORD Accolades

Congratulations to:

▪ Dean Eurich on his election into the Royal Society of Canada as a New Scholar
▪ Dax Rumsey for successfully completing his MSc Oral Exam
▪ Ben Dubois for successfully completing his MSc Oral Exam
Dean Eurich on his election into the Royal Society of Canada as a New Scholar
Dax Rumsey for successfully completing his MSc Oral Exam
Ben Dubois for successfully completing his MSc Oral Exam

Other ACHORD News

Congratulations to:

▪ Fatima Al Sayah on becoming a Canadian Citizen
▪ Nonsi Mathe and MJ Disu-Degadjor on the birth of their son, Thabo
Fatima Al Sayah on becoming a Canadian Citizen
Nonsi Mathe and MJ Disu-Degadjor on the birth of their son, Thabo

Upcoming Events

4th Annual APERSU End-User Meeting

October 11 & 12, 2018

Varscona on Whyte

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

16th Annual ACHORD Retreat

March 4 & 5, 2019

Peter Lougheed Centre, University of Alberta Campus

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada


University of Alberta
2-040 Li Ka Shing CHRI
Edmonton, AB T6G 2E1
Phone: 780-248-1010

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