Media Contacts

Laura Heinze

Media Relations Manager
Ministry of Health
250 952-1887 (media line)

Lori Last

Director, Communications
Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research
604 714-2788 (office)
604 773-4911 (mobile)


A snapshot of research projects at the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research

Advances in breast cancer treatment:

  • About one-third of women with early stage breast cancer carry a tumour type that is very unlikely to return following surgery. Dr. Torsten Nielsen’s research was used to create the Prosigna test, now used around the world, to spare these patients from the gruelling side effects of chemotherapy and to save health care dollars.

Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination guidelines:

  • In 2006, B.C. was seeking a cost-effective way to provide HPV immunity.
  • The resulting research project, led by Dr. Gina Ogilvie (BC Centre for Disease Control) and Dr. Simon Dobson (Child & Family Research Institute), focused on HPV vaccine dosage and found that two doses provided the same level of protection as the standard three doses.
  • Fewer doses will save costs, help increase compliance and boost the overall vaccination rate, which will ultimately prevent thousands of cervical cancer deaths.

Evidence-based practice on falls prevention:

  • In 2010, falls cost the acute health care sector in B.C. $608 million, according to a 2015 report produced by the BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit.
  • The research team is co-led by Dr. Teresa Liu-Ambrose and includes Dr. Jennifer Davis created the Vancouver Falls Prevention Clinic.
  • The Vancouver Falls Prevention Clinic uses a multidisciplinary approach to reduce falls by up to 50% and target those at greatest risk of falling. This will help deliver individualized care that allows patients to regain independence and confidence.
  • Every fall requiring hospitalization that the clinic prevents saves the health care system roughly $24,000, as noted by the report produced by the BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit.

Media Assets

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