Supported by $17.5 million in federal funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Lady Davis Institute (LDI) at the Jewish General Hospital will spearhead a new national collaboration to safeguard the health of individuals who use prescription medication.

The Canadian Network for Observational Drug Effect Studies (CNODES) has been placed under the leadership of Dr. Samy Suissa, Director of the Centre for Clinical Epidemiology at the LDI. CNODES has assembled top researchers from across Canada for a series of collaborative, multi-year studies that will gauge the actual effects of prescription drugs on those who use them. Although these medications have been approved for use by the public, there has been no way to determine their practical, long-term effects on consumers—until now.

The researchers will base their conclusions on an analysis of digitized healthcare data relating to 27 million people across the country. Using cutting-edge investigative methods, they will rapidly evaluate the real-world risks and benefits of medications that have been used, in some cases, for more than 30 years. All of the healthcare data is processed with utmost confidentiality; individual consumers are known only by a scrambled identification number which the researchers do not see.

To read the full press release, visit the Jewish General Hospital’s website.