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Dr. Melanie Penner, senior clinician scientist
News
Dr. Melanie Penner Awarded a 5-year, $2M CIHR Grant

Grant to focus on improving the understanding of implementing, evaluating, and sharing transformative evidence-informed policies and interventions to improve the integration, continuity, and coordination of care across the lifespan. 

The Bloorview Research Institute (BRI) at Holland Bloorview is proud to announce that Dr. Melanie Penner, senior clinician scientist and developmental pediatrician, has received a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) grant! The Transforming Health with Integrated Care (THINC) grant specifically focuses on improving understanding of implementing, evaluating, and sharing transformative evidence-informed policies and interventions to improve the integration, continuity, and coordination of care across the lifespan. More information about the grant can be found here.

Many Canadian children wait too long for an autism diagnosis. Dr. Penner’s work seeks to expand capacity among community health care providers to provide care in both autism diagnosis and ongoing integrated care. The THINC grant will allow Dr. Penner to build on her previous work with Project ECHO Ontario Autism, an evidence-based intervention for community providers to enhance their autism care. Particularly, her new Project ECHO Autism Diagnosis and Integrated care Opportunities (ECHO AuDIO) will develop, implement, and evaluate tool kits and training focused on diagnosis and ongoing integrated care. The grant will enable Dr. Penner to measure whether healthcare providers’ and families’ experiences change as a result of the focus on diagnosis and integrated care within ECHO AuDIO.

Dr. Penner shares: “This funding will allow us to embed autism diagnosis training and support into ECHO Autism programs across the country. We are also going to build up capacity to provide integrated care, which we know is a huge area of need for autistic children and their families. I’m particularly excited that we can build these tools and evaluate them at five sites across Canada.”

The research profiles for the implementation science teams can be found here.

Congratulations to Dr. Penner and her team for this accomplishment and the important work to come!

More details about the Government of Canada's announcement found here.