The widening scope of disciplines and expertise of McMaster University's Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CE&B) has led to a name change. The department is now officially the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact, to be known in short form as HEI.
The name change, approved by the university's senate and the board of governors, was effective Jan. 1.
"Our new name powerfully connects us to the department's history in evidence-based medicine and the global impact it has had," said Holger Schünemann, chair of HEI since 2009. "The name also captures the department's strategic goal of extending its leadership in achieving greater direct impact on people's health."
Canada's first Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics was founded at McMaster's new medical school in 1967 by clinical epidemiologists and biostatisticians.
Over the years they were joined by health economists along with researchers in health systems, health education, health policy, public and population health, e-health, ethics, social science, and other disciplines.
The department has an international reputation for fostering the quality of clinical research through rigorous, scientifically valid clinical research methods and application, as well as its strong educational programs which have grown to include graduate programs in health research methodology, public health, health policy and eHealth.
The department currently has 51 full-time and joint faculty members; 75 associate and 65 part-time faculty members, and more than 130 full-time staff.
"This department has set the gold standard for how the highest quality clinical research is done, and this has had direct and dramatic impact on improving outcomes in health care, not just in Canada but worldwide," said Paul O'Byrne, dean and vice-president of the Faculty of Health Sciences.
"The department has also trained generations of highly successful scientists, and coined and promoted evidence-based medicine as a fundamental basis for clinical decision making. Its future is bright, and the name change is appropriate and well-deserved," he added.
The website for the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence and Impact is found here. A new website will be launched at a celebration event later this spring.