The INSPIRE-PHC Program has a RESEARCH component, a SUPPORT component, including patient engagement, and a NETWORK component to serve the primary health care research community of Ontario.  Please see INSPIRE_PHC  for more information. You can follow the program on Twitter @inspire_phc 

The PHC Patient Engagement Resource Centre housed at the Bruyere Research Institute in Ottawa will continue supporting the on-going research projects.  This centre promotes and supports the meaningful and appropriate engagement of patients (meaning people with lived experience of a health issue, their families, friends and caregivers) in primary health care research in Ontario. 

The research component consists of completed research program (2013-2016) led by Dr. Moira Stewart of Western University and a newly funded (2017-2020) research program led by Dr. Michael Green of Queen’s University.  These research programs are funded through the Health System Research Fund, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) of Ontario, Canada. 

Although the first research program is complete, the three innovations included in that program continue to be active programs and can be accessed through the following websites:


SCOPE at University Health Network 

eConsult – The Champlain BASETM eConsult Service

The network component consists of over 125 Ontario Primary Health Care related researchers, clinician-scientists and policymakers. The goal of the network is to build awareness and share information among the Ontario PHC Research community. Information, opportunities, events and resources related to PHC research are provided to network members via a listserv. The INSPIRE-PHC website also includes a list of linked resources that have been shared with the Network since 2013. 

Program Lead: Dr. Moira Stewart, Dr. Brian W. Gilbert Canada Research Chair in Primary Health Care Research (2003-2017), Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, Centre for Studies in Family Medicine, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University.

If you have any questions of for more information, please contact: Eliot Frymire Manager.

A website for the new Research program is under construction. Three faculty from the Centre for Studies in Family Medicine are involved in leading projects for this new research.

Building Primary Health Care (PHC) and Public Health (PH)

Dr. Amanda Terry, Centre for Studies in Family Medicine, Western University along with Dr. Anita Kothari and Dr. Ruta Valaitis are leading a project titled:Building Primary Health Care (PHC) and Public Health (PH) Collaboration with and for the Community. Prospective case study design will be used to explore the implementation and outcomes of an intervention to stimulate a PHC-PH collaboration in a PH catchment area in Ontario. Activities include co-designing a training module with a core neighbourhood team composed of community members and PHC/PH providers to implement the intervention; the intervention includes the development of a community health profile and a deliberative dialogue. We are interested in the type of action steps arising from the facilitated collaboration, how the core team viewed the process of jointly facilitating the intervention for PHC and PH collaboration, and the feasibility of the intervention.

Facilitating rapid early stage evaluation of PHC renewal initiatives

Dr. Merrick Zwarenstein, Centre for Studies in Family Medicine, Western University along with Dr. Ivers are leading a project titled: Facilitating rapid early stage evaluation of PHC renewal initiatives. This project will use a structured template to facilitate deliberative discussion among stakeholders as they develop new interventions to implement their policies for linking primary care providers with inter-disciplinary resources and for addressing population needs. This project will facilitate the use of the Nose to Tail (NTT) tool, a template for structuring deliberations on service delivery interventions developed previously. We will use stakeholder interviews, observation and focus groups to understand these deliberations, and resulting qualitative data to assess whether the NTT is resulting in new interventions that are logically coherent, sufficiently acceptable to stakeholders, and compatible with health system outcomes to warrant implementation.

Linking PHC providers to work together

Dr. Judith Belle Brown is leading a project titled: Linking PHC providers to work together. This research will provide data to identify barriers and inform solutions for linking PHC providers to work together. It will also inform change management strategies that can be used at the local and LHIN levels. This qualitative study will use constructivist grounded theory. Data will be collected through semi-structured interviews. The study will be conducted in phases for each target population and the sample will include family physicians from various funding leaders, other health professionals affiliated with inter-professional primary care models, and administrators from the LHINS and sub-regions. It is expected that data will be collected at different stages of implementation of Patients First, thereby providing information relevant to early and later stages of adoption.