Honourees celebrated at 2017 Health Research Foundation Research Awards Gala

Posted on November 22, 2017

Montreal, November 22, 2017 – The Health Research Foundation (HRF) of Innovative Medicines Canada, along with Prix Galien and Research Canada: An Alliance for Health Discovery, are proud to announce the winners of this year’s pre-eminent Canadian health awards.

These awards recognize and celebrate the best and brightest minds and discoveries in the Canadian life sciences sector. A recent analysis performed by EY Canada was completed to determine the economic impact of Innovative Medicines Canada’s members.

Key highlights include:

  • Overall economic contribution is estimated at $19.2 billion
  • 9.97% of revenues invested into R&D
  • Supports more than 30,000 jobs, including high-value and well-paid researchers, scientists and clinicians
  • 673,000 Canadian patients are supported through compassionate care programs, financial assistance and counselling

The winners of this year’s awards are:


HRF Medal of Honour

Dr. Ian Stiell – Dr. Stiell is a global pioneer in emergency medicine research. He led the development of widely-used clinical decision rules for diagnosing ankle, knee, spine and head injuries, as well risk scales to guide treatment for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and heart failure. He also helped establish the benefits of early CPR for cardiac arrest. His research has saved lives, improved care and reduced unnecessary medical imaging worldwide. Dr. Stiell is a distinguished professor at the University of Ottawa and head of The Ottawa Hospital Emergency Medicine Research Group. He has published 369 peer-reviewed papers in high-impact journals and has won many international awards that include election into the U.S. Institute of Medicine.

Research Canada Leadership in Advocacy Award

Dr. Eleanor Fish and Dr. Christopher Paige – Both winners were chosen based on their impact on advancing health research through their advocacy efforts. Dr. Fish has had a tremendous impact through the media by helping Canadians understand the benefits of Canadian health research to their everyday lives. Dr. Paige has built partnerships and promoted health research and health innovation policies through a number of organizations and institutions with which he has been affiliated, and, in some cases, created.

Prix Galien Canada Research Award

Dr. Ernesto Schiffrin – Dr. Schiffrin is one of Canada’s most outstanding clinician scientists whose bench to bedside insights into the mechanisms and therapy of hypertension have had a transformative effect on our understanding and management of cardiovascular disease. His laboratory has elucidated the differential beneficial effects of ACE inhibitors, angiotension receptor antagonists, mineralocorticoid receptor blockers and calcium channel antagonists on vascular structure and endothelial function in essential hypertension and diabetes.

Prix Galien Canada Innovative Product Award

The Prix Galien Canada – Innovative Product Award was given to Merck Canada Inc.for Pembrolizumab (Keytruda) which is a highly selective humanized anti-programmed cell death receptor antibody that restores T-cell mediated immune response against different types of cancer cells including advanced non-small cell lung cancer. The research and development of this drug involved two Canadian principal investigators, authorship on significant publications, partnership with six reference laboratories across the country to provide standardized PD-L1 testing, and enrollment of over 100 patients in 25 clinical trial centres.

Quick Facts

  • The HRF Medal of Honour was first awarded in 1945 and recognizes remarkable individuals whose research or contributions to public policies supportive of research and development in Canada have achieved international recognition. Recipients have made pivotal contributions to the advancement of knowledge in health sciences and/or the improvement of therapeutics healthcare.
  • The Prix Galien Canada is the most prestigious award in the field of Canadian pharmaceutical research and innovation, recognizing the efforts and achievements of pharmaceutical research and development.
  • The Research Canada Leadership in Advocacy Award honours champions in health research advocacy and is given on an annual basis to recognize outstanding efforts in advocating for Canadian health research at the local, provincial and/or national level.

The Health Research Foundation Research Awards Gala was proudly sponsored by Norton Rose Fulbright.

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For further information:

Sarah Dion-Marquis
Director, Media and Public Relations
Telephone: 613-769-5910

About the Health Research Foundation of Innovative Medicines Canada

The Health Research Foundation (HRF) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to support and promote the value of health research in Canada. By applying the highest standards of scientific excellence, addressing health system sustainability challenges and establishing partnerships, the HRF, one of the leading private health research foundations in the country, contributes significantly to the prevention and treatment of disease, to a better health care system and the availability for Canadians to access effective health products.

About The Prix Galien

The Prix Galien is the most prestigious award in the field of Canadian pharmaceutical research and innovation. Referred to as the Nobel Prize of pharmaceutical research, it recognizes the efforts and achievements of pharmaceutical research and development. The Prix Galien Canada is organized by Innovation Life Canada, a non-profit organization whose mission is to celebrate Canadian innovation in the life sciences.

About Research Canada

Research Canada: An alliance for Health discovery, is a national, broad-based alliance dedicated to increasing investments in health research through collaborative advocacy. We believe health research is a shared benefit, shared responsibility and an investment in Canada’s future. We engage government, academia, industry and non-profit sectors to build support for balanced and long-term health research funding – investments that strengthen Canada’s innovation system and lead to better health, sustainable health care, new commercialization opportunities, and skilled jobs for Canadians. Only through sustained and balanced investments in health research will Canada succeed in keeping its citizens the healthiest and most prosperous in the world.

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