CCHE Seminar: Susan Bronskill

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CCHE Seminar: Susan E. Bronskill, IC/ESProfile of Susan Bronskill

Understanding the health system impact of aging and neurodegenerative diseases with health services research

Abstract: As populations worldwide are living longer, the impact of neurodegenerative diseases on health resource utilization is expected to increase. Providing care to older adults with these conditions is challenging and requires adequate supports across multiple health sectors including community, acute care and nursing home settings to allow individuals to maximize their quality of life. The Ontario Neurodegenerative Disease Research Initiative (ONDRI) is a collaborative research program funded by the Ontario Brain Institute that aims to improve diagnosis, treatment and management of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and cerebrovascular disease with/without cognitive impairment.

The ONDRI Health Systems Research Platform is embedded within a larger network of biomedical and clinician researchers, provincial decision-makers and health system stakeholders. Using population-based linked health administrative and clinical databases–covering over 14 million individuals residing in the province of Ontario, Canada– the ONDRI Health Systems Research Platform will address knowledge gaps regarding the health service utilization and outcomes of older adults with neurodegenerative diseases and impacts on family and care partners. Access to over two decades of historical health administrative data on a large population of older individuals uniquely positions our collaborative to examine trajectories of health system use as well as rare neurodegenerative diseases which have been previously understudied.

This session will explore how health administrative databases may be used to address knowledge gaps regarding health service utilization and outcomes in older persons with neurodegenerative diseases using examples from: trajectories for dementia care, sex differences in patterns of ALS care, sex differences in care needs among those admitted to nursing home following stroke, and potentially disease-modifying drugs in Parkinson’s disease.

Dr. Susan Bronskill is a Senior Scientist and Program Leader at ICES, Canada’s largest health services and policy research institute. In her research, Dr. Bronskill makes use of population-based administrative databases to study transitions between health care sectors and focusses on improving quality of care, medication use, health services utilization and health care outcomes for older adults — particularly persons with Alzheimer’s and related dementias, women, persons living in long-term care and those who are frail. Her goal is to identify how health systems can be integrated to meet the needs of vulnerable older adults. Harvard-trained, Dr. Bronskill has a strong record of peer-reviewed funding. In addition to sharing her research in academic settings, she has a long-standing interest in interdisciplinary, collaborative work and engages with health system stakeholders in order to formulate research evidence that will contribute to policy decisions.

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