Background

The ActionADE project is part of a larger program of research dedicated to improving medical care for patients at risk for and suffering from adverse drug events. Our project team, led by Drs. Corinne Hohl and Ellen Balka, conducts applied health research to design system interventions to prevent adverse drug events.

Early roots

When Dr. Corinne Hohl was doing her medical residency, one of her instructors drew her attention to issues of drug safety and polypharmacy, when patients are exposed to multiple prescription drugs.

As Dr. Hohl continued to research and learn about the epidemiology of drug-related adverse events, she started to understand just how common adverse drug events are – and how often they are misdiagnosed. She saw that adverse drug events were not being adequately described in the research literature, and that medical residents like herself were not being taught about this kind of potential harm from medications.

Since her early interest in polypharmacy, drug safety and adverse drug events, Dr. Hohl went on to lead numerous research projects to better understand adverse drug-related events, and identify opportunities to prevent them through health systems-level changes.

Jumping into Action [ADE]

In 2012, Dr. Hohl partnered with Dr. Ellen Balka – a communication and technology expert, associate dean and professor at Simon Fraser University  – to co-lead ActionADE. The project was awarded Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) funding for the first several years of the project, and then won continued funding for 2015 – 2019, 2016 – 2021, and 2019 – 2023. Initial research included a systematic review, participant design workshops with healthcare providers, observations of real workplace practices, paper-based form piloting, and software piloting, refinement, and implementation.

Moving forward

We are now working to evaluate the ActionADE application in BC, alongside other research projects to better understand the nature of adverse drug events and how they can be prevented.

For the latest news on our research, please see our publications and presentations.