Collaboration steps up during pandemic

WRH CEO David Musyj, St. Clair College President Patti France, HDGH CEO Janice Kaffer and University of Windsor President Robert Gordon sign the memorandum of understanding for WE SPARK Health Institute, March 9, 2020. (Photo by Maureen Revait)

A local healthcare collaboration has created a resource hub in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis.

The WE-SPARK Health Institute, a joint effort of St. Clair College, the University of Windsor, Windsor Regional Hospital, and Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare designed to address regional health issues, has created a one-stop centre for community resources concerning the constantly-evolving information surrounding the novel coronavirus.

Dr. Lisa Porter, WE-SPARK’s executive director, is hopeful that all bases will be covered through this initiative.

“We created this one-stop-shop resource, for researchers, healthcare providers and our community, there’s something there for everyone,” said Porter in a media release.

The collaboration will compile the latest data on cases of COVID-19, locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally. Information pertaining to pandemic research will also be available for health system databases and for fundraising purposes.

For doctors, nurses, and others in the healthcare profession, WE-SPARK will put together data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and psychosocial support for those on the front lines of handling the crisis. Resources on mental health, protecting young people from COVID-19, and the latest local information are also available.

The WE-SPARK Health Institute was launched earlier this month when representatives from the four participants signed a memorandum of understanding. Porter told at the time that the collaboration will streamline the medical research field in Windsor-Essex.

“By bringing us all together, really that can elevate the kinds of questions that we’re asking, it’s going to streamline and provide resources so that we can really make these research grants possible,” said Porter.

-With files from Maureen Revait