Medal of Honour

Recognizing excellence and pivotal contributions to health science for Canada, for the world.


Since its inception in 1945, the Medal of Honour has been awarded to remarkable individuals whose research or contributions to public policies supportive of research and development in Canada have achieved international recognition. All recipients have made pivotal contributions to the advancement of knowledge in the health sciences and/or the improvement of therapeutics healthcare.

The award recipient receives $20,000 to donate to the research-based, Canadian academic institution of their choice, along with being presented with the prestigious Medal of Honour at the HRF’s annual awards event.


Nominations have now closed for the 2023 HRF Medal of Honour. Submitted nominations will be considered for up to two award cycles. The nominee’s work/research must have been performed in Canada by a Canadian resident.

Any queries regarding the HRF Medal of Honour, please submit via email. Media enquiries can be sent to

Past Recipients


Dr. Kenneth Rockwood
For his expertise and dedicated research to improve care for older adults and people with dementia.


Dr. Allison McGeer
For her instrumental research and work that has been at the forefront of emerging infectious diseases in Canada and globally.


Dr. Astrid Guttmann
For her innovative research and work that has greatly impacted and influenced child-related healthcare policy nationally and internationally.


No recipient


Dr. Geoffrey T. Fong
For his pioneering research on tobacco smoking to address this leading preventable cause of death globally.


Dr. David Jenkins
For his role in the creation of the glycemic index and the development of the Portfolio diet in Canada.


Dr. Ian Stiell
For his role in the healthcare research of emergency room care and triaging.


Dr. Robert Young
For his role in the discovery and development of Singulair®.


Dr. Norman Campbell
For his role in the creation of a clinical guideline program for the control of Hypertension in Canada.


Dr. Charles Tator
For his contribution as one of the world’s premier academic neurosurgeons and his dedication to the research of brain and spinal cord injuries.


Dr. Robert Young
For his role in the discovery and development of Singulair®.


Dr. Julio Montaner
For his life changing contributions to the field of HIV/AIDS including development of Highly Active Antiretroviral and Treatment as Prevention Therapies.


The Honourable Kelvin K. Ogilvie
For the invention of the “Gene Machine” and Ganciclovir as well as his contribution to public policies supportive of health research in Canada.


Dr. Charles M. Scriver and Mr. Arnold Steinberg
For ensuring the addition of Vitamin D to milk in Quebec and in establishing a Metabolic Food Distribution centre.


The Right Honourable Brian Mulroney, QC
For his contribution to the Canadian health care system.


Dr. Michel Chretien
For his contribution to the research and application of converting enzymes.


Dr. Nabil Sediah
For his pioneering contributions to research on enzymes and the compounds that produce them.


Dr. Bernard Belleau
For the discovery of 3TC (posthumously).


Dr. Henry J.M. Barnett
For his contribution to the field of cerebrovascular disease, specifically stroke treatment and prevention.


Dr. David L. Sackett
For his contributions to the development of rigorous scientific methodology for clinical research.


Dr. Raymond U. Lemieux
For his pioneering research in Carbohydrate chemistry, leading to the development of effective agents.


Dr. Lap-Chee Tsui and Dr. Jack Riordan
For the discovery of the defective gene Causing cystic fibrosis.


Dr. Gustave Gingras
For the excellence of his contributions to the science of Rehabilitation.


Dr. Murray L. Barr
For his original work on the sex chromatin and developmental anomalies in man.


Dr. Ray Farquharson
For the clinical assessment of antibiotics, service as a leading medical educator and Chairman of the Medical Research Council of Canada.


Dr. Wilder Graves Penfield
For his contribution to neurological sciences.


Sir Henry Hallett Dale
Recognition of his many pharmacological contributions to the advancement of medical science.


Dr. T. Clarence Routley
Recognition of his exemplary statesmanship in establishing the World Medical Association.


Dr. Edward C. Kendall
For the discovery of cortisone.


Dr. Charles H. Best
For the co-discovery of insulin.


Sir Alexander Fleming
For the discovery of penicillin.


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