Current Projects

The Centre of Excellence is actively seeking researchers, students and other stakeholders worldwide to collaborate on various research studies and initiatives. 

If you would like to explore opportunities to collaborate with the Centre of Excellence, please contact us at: nrayne@prvhc.com, or 613-526-7170 ext. 2232 .

If you have an established project and are looking for partners/participating sites, please complete the Research Application Form so we can assess our ability to participate.

Research Application Form

Current Projects – September 2021

Below is a list of ongoing projects involving the Centre of Excellence in Frailty-Informed Care. Many of the projects are actively seeking additional participants, such as Perley Health residents, tenants, families, caregivers and staff. For participants, the projects often represent opportunities to engage in meaningful social and recreational activities such as learning a new skill, sharing experiences, and providing input on various issues. Participation also helps contribute to knowledge that can help improve care.

All projects follow public health measures related to COVID-19 and the policies set out by Perley Health.


1)  Psychosocial Impacts of Reducing Non-Essential Visitors in Long-Term Care in the Context of the COVID-19 Pandemic (Modified Version)

Principal Investigator: Dr. Annie Robitaille, Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa

This study aims to gain a better understanding of the emotional well-being (e.g. psychological distress, loneliness) of family/friend caregivers, volunteers, and older adults living in LTC. Participants will be involved in one interview, which can be conducted over the phone or online (45 to 60 minutes). During this interview, participants will be asked about the unique challenges faced as a result of reduced staffing/volunteer levels, new initiatives put in place as a result of COVID-19 including success stories, and solutions for dealing with future pandemics and outbreaks.


2) Social Inclusion of People Living with Dementia and Their Caregivers Using an Intergenerational Program

Co-Principal Investigators: Dr. Annie Robitaille, Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa; Dr. Linda Garcia, Faculty of Health Sciences, LIFE Research Institute, University of Ottawa

Older adults (long-term care residents and tenants) living with dementia can receive friendly one-on-one visits from university student volunteers, providing them with an opportunity to engage in social and recreational activities and meaningful conversations. The caregiver of the person living with dementia will be asked to complete a 20- minute questionnaire on 4 occasions.


3) Health Information Technology and Senior Care: Seniors and Nurses’ Perspective of Technology Adoption

Principal Investigator: Hamidreza Kavandi; Supervisor: Dr. Mirou Jaana, Telfer School of Management, University of Ottawa

Health-information technology (HIT) presents opportunities for healthcare providers to better meet seniors’ healthcare needs. This study will investigate the perspective of nurses in relation to the key factors that affect nurses’ adoption of HIT in LTC. Nurses will be asked to answer three online questions (each question will take 10 to 15 minutes). Participants will benefit from the study by voicing their opinions and thoughts on this important topic and contributing to the development of an authoritative list of factors that influence nurses’ adoption of HIT in the context of senior care.


4) Long-Term Care Residents Quality of Life and Well-Being: A Pre-Post Pandemic Evaluation

Principal Investigator: Danielle Cruise; Supervisor: Dr. Mirou Jaana, Telfer School of Management; University of Ottawa

While research on the quality of life (QoL) of older adults prior to the COVID-19 pandemic is abundant, research on QoL during the pandemic and focus on the long-term care (LTC) sector in Canada is sparse. The objective of this study is to evaluate the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on resident QoL and well-being. Data from the ActivityPro tracker and the QoL survey that had been previously collected during 2019 and 2020 will be compared to determine how resident QoL and well-being in LTC organizations was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The data will be analyzed at the aggregate level and the results of this study will be used to inform changes and improve the care and services provided to seniors.


5) COVID-19 Immunity Study

Co-Principal Investigators: Dr. Amy Hsu, Bruyère Research Institute and Dr. Marc-Andrè Langlois, University of Ottawa

This study involves residents, staff, students, volunteers and caregivers in long-term care homes across Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia. The aim of this project is to gain a better understanding of COVID-19 prevalence in LTC homes across Canada and to examine the level and duration of protection of COVID-19 vaccines. Participants will be asked to complete an online baseline survey (15 minutes) and provide blood spot samples collected at several time points over the next 12 months. Participants can access their antibody results through a secure web-based portal. Also, participating LTC homes will be given the aggregate data which will provide valuable information about a home’s overall level of immunity and risk.


6) Program to Accelerate Technologies for Homecare (PATH)

Co-Principal Investigators, Ottawa site: Dr. Jeffrey Jutai, Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa; Dr. Jason Millar, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Ottawa

PATH is a multi-partner initiative to increase the understanding of the potential role that home-based technologies can play in the care and well-being of older adults. Groups of older adults will be provided various devices and technologies (e.g. blood-pressure monitors, pressure-sensitive mats that track sleep patterns, wearable devices that can detect falls, etc.) and their experiences monitored. Researchers will share the data with industry to test, validate and potentially commercialize products. The CoE will soon recruit LTC residents and Seniors’ Village tenants to participate.


7) Linking Lives Through Care

Principal Investigator: Christine Novy; Supervisor: Dr. Roanne Thomas, School of Rehabilitation Science, University of Ottawa

Family/friend caregivers currently caring for a person living with dementia are invited to participate in a study about relationships and care. The study involves two 60-minute online interviews and one follow-up interview (15-30 min) onsite at Perley Health. In the first interview, participants will be asked about the history of their caring relationship. In the second interview, participants will be asked to share three sentimental objects associated with their experiences. During the third interview, the person receiving care will be invited to reflect with the participant on the sentimental objects. Participants will receive a video recording of this meeting as a memento.


8) Health Surveillance of Community-Dwelling, Person-with-Dementia and Caregiver Dyads

Principal Investigator: Dr. Annie Robitaille, Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa

This project aims to increase understanding of the trajectories of individuals living with dementia and their caregivers (dyads) from diagnosis to the move into LTC. Information will be collected from dyads over extended periods of time and the results used to inform policies, programs and areas of future research in Canada.


9) Comparaison des performances au Montréal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) en anglais et en français chez les personnes bilingues ayant le français comme langue maternelle (*Please note this project is only available to French-speaking individuals)

Co-chercheurs principaux: Dominique Yelle, Amira Meyers, Zachary Carrière et Emily Pidgeon; Superviseur: Dr. Jacinthe Savard, École des sciences de la réadaptation, Université d’Ottawa

Nous recherchons des volontaires de 40 ans et plus, ayant le français comme langue maternelle et une connaissance de l’anglais allant de minimale à très bonne, pour participer à une étude comparant les performances à un test cognitif en anglais et en français chez les personnes bilingues. En tant que participant à cette étude, il vous serait demandé de : Répondre à un questionnaire en ligne, puis de passer un test de bilinguisme et un test cognitif en français et en anglais par vidéoconférence. Votre participation est entièrement volontaire et prendrait environ 50 minutes de votre temps.  En participant à cette étude, vous nous aiderez à aider les personnes bilingues à mieux saisir dans quelles langues elles doivent demander des services. Afin de vous remercier pour votre contribution à ce projet de recherche, vous pourrez entrer votre nom dans un tirage pour gagner une carte-cadeau d’une valeur de 50$.


10) COVID-19, Precarity and the Counternarratives of PSWs: Photovoice and Change

Principal Investigator: Veen Wong, Public Health Sciences, University of Waterloo; Supervisor: Dr. Patricia Van Katwyk, School of Social Work, Renison University College, University of Waterloo

This project will shed light on the work perspective of Personal Support Workers (PSWs) during the pandemic. During group and individual virtual interviews, PSWs will be encouraged to describe their experiences, particular whether they consider their work as essential, precarious and/or unseen, and how various policies and systems shape their work experiences. Each participant will then be encouraged to create images based on these discussions – a technique known as photovoice. The identity of the image-takers will remain anonymous and the images will be analyzed and shared. Each participant will receive an honorarium of $50.


11) COVID-19 – Design of Long-Term Care Homes (LTC) – Learning for the Future

Principal Investigator: Chantal Trudel, School of Industrial Design, Faculty of Engineering and Design, Carleton University

This is a preliminary case study focused on improving our understanding of how the design of Long-Term Care homes impacts and/or is influenced by infection prevention and control measures during COVID-19. The aim of this project is to design better environments to support the quality of life of residents and staff during COVID-19 and future infectious outbreaks. The information and designs developed from this study could assist the sector now, and this work will directly inform the CSA National Standard for Long-Term Care Services. Participants (residents, staff and family members) across Ontario will remotely engage in photo diaries, virtual interviews and design sessions. 


12) Negotiating Person-Centred Care in Eastern Ontario Long-Term Care Homes During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Principal Investigator: Dr. Megan Graham, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Carleton University

The study aims to learn about experiences of resident care during the COVID-19 pandemic with a specific focus on the absence and presence of the arts in residents’ lives. 30-minute interviews will be conducted with staff, residents, and family who have lived throughout the pandemic and are now engaging with the arts. Participants will be asked about what participation in the arts means to the individual, what the arts uniquely provide as a form of care, and how the restrictions during the pandemic impacted the individual’s participation in the arts and the impact of this on daily life.


13) COVID-19 Pandemic Experiences of People with Mobility Disability: A Grounded Theory Study

Principal Investigator: Michelle Yang; Supervisors: Sarah Fraser and Tracey O’Sullivan; Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa

This study explores the unique perspectives and experiences of individuals who self-identify as having a mobility disability (relating to dexterity, balance, walking, physically maneuvering, or other). Participants will be asked to participate in a one-on-one interview over the phone or Zoom, depending on their preference. This will last a maximum of 60-80 minutes or as long as the participant is comfortable.

Contact Information

If you have questions about The Centre of Excellence or a particular project, please contact:

Nikita Rayne

Research Coordinator, Centre of Excellence

The Perley Health Veterans’ Health Centre

1750 Russell Road, Ottawa ON K1G 5Z6

613-526-7170 ext. 2232

nrayne@prvhc.com

Danielle Sinden

Director, Centre of Excellence and Research Operations

The Perley Health Veterans’ Health Centre

1750 Russell Road, Ottawa ON K1G 5Z6

613-526-7170 ext. 2424

dsinden@prvhc.com