Integrating Health Services Research into CIHR

Executive Summary

Health Services Research Provides Information Essential to Canada’s Health System. The Canadian health system has grown in complexity in recent decades, making it ever more imperative to organize and manage it to ensure Canadians’ access to effective health services at an affordable cost to society. In response, the field of health services research has mushroomed, becoming an integral part of health research (e.g., MRC includes a health services research grants committee; the Canadian Health Services Research Foundation was established in 1997). Health services research is a policy-oriented field that draws on disciplines across the social sciences, health sciences, natural sciences, humanities, law and business. It can make a crucial contribution to CIHR’s transformative vision for a new integrative, collaborative approach to health research in Canada, research that will improve the health and well-being of Canadians. We illustrate the role of health services research using three current policy problems in health care.