Innovation in medicine offers tremendous hope. But it requires similar innovation in governance—in law, policy, and ethics—for society to fully realize the fruits and avoid the pitfalls. For example, how can we incorporate tomorrow's AI technology into healthcare while avoiding inadvertent bias and discrimination? How can we apply insights from neuroscience to improve our criminal justice system for cases where mental illness is a factor? And as numerous as tomorrow's challenges are, there are as many gaps and shortfalls in what we already have: Many Canadians die waiting for organ transplants each year yet most people are not registered donors. Pathogens will inevitably adapt to our current antibiotics and we aren't developing new ones fast enough. The list is long and ever evolving...
Complex challenges like these have in common that they can't be solved by physicians, scientists, engineers, or policy makers alone. In response, the University of Ottawa Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics (CHLPE) aims to bridge gaps, fostering the collaboration of different kinds of researchers and practitioners. We also facilitate interdisciplinary training at the graduate level. And we move new ideas and evidence from research into the hands of policy makers, practitioners, and the public—through our events, blogs, sessions with government, and testimony in Parliament and the Senate. With 30 core faculty drawn from a dozen disciplines, we are the largest centre of our kind in Canada and one of the largest in the world.
Jennifer Chandler is Interim Director of CHLPE for 2020-21. Jennifer's research lies at the intersection of neuroscience/psychiatry and the law. She is an elected member of the Board of Directors of the International Neuroethics Society and serves on numerous external committees such as the CIHR Institute Advisory Board – Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction. She leads the international research and policy group Neuroethics Panamericana. She also holds the Bertram Loeb Chair in Organ Donation and Transplantation, and leads several research teams on trust in the ODT system, family decision-making at the end of life, and the law and ethics of donation support policies. She chairs the Ethics Committee of the Canadian Society of Transplantation.
Colleen Flood is a Professor and University Research Chair in the Faculty of Law at the University of Ottawa, and inaugural Director of CHLPE. She has served as Interim Vice President Research for the University of Ottawa. From 2000–2015 she was a Professor of Law at the University of Toronto and Scientific Director of the CIHR Institute of Population and Public Health. Colleen’s research focuses on comparative healthcare policy, public/private funding of healthcare systems, constitutional rights to healthcare, accountability and governance issues, and the impact and regulation of AI and other technologies in healthcare. In 2020–21 Colleen will be on sabbatical and Jennifer Chandler will be standing in as Director of CHLPE.
Pascal Thibeault is Associate Director of CHLPE. He is an expert in health and technology law. Before joining us, he held positions in Toronto as in-house counsel at Medtronic, one of the worldwide leaders in medical technology, and at Cision. Pascal studied Law at Laval University, Harvard University, and the University of Toronto. During his studies Pascal was a CIHR Fellow in Health Law, Ethics, and Policy, and was a Summer Fellow at Yale University. His research focused on using behavioural economics to improve health outcomes.
Giles Holland is responsible for operations at CHLPE, including web development, graphic design, communications content, budgeting and reporting, events and conferences, videography, and other administrative operations. Giles also contributes to grant writing and funding development. Giles has a background in physical sciences and neuroscience and in addition to his work at CHLPE he is active in software development in vision science. Many winters ago, Giles was a highschool science teacher.