Welcome to the first issue of the NEW CNODES Quarterly Newsletter. As someone who has been involved in some capacity with CNODES, you might like to stay up to date on news related to the network.


CNODES is pleased to now offer the following opportunities for you to stay informed:

  • CNODES Quarterly Newsletter - Sent quarterly. This newsletter will provide CNODES project updates, member and trainee profiles, upcoming events, and other CNODES-related news.
  • CNODES Training Updates - Sent as-needed (maximum once/month). These emails will provide training and professional development resources related to drug safety and effectiveness and knowledge translation.
  • CNODES Events - Sent as-needed. These emails will provide information on the CNODES Seminar Series and other virtual events.

You may update your subscription preferences or unsubscribe to all CNODES communications at any time using the link below. This link will be provided at the bottom of every CNODES communication.

CNODES Trainee Spotlight | Reem Masarwa, McGill University


Dr. Reem Masarwa, PharmD, PhD, is a post-doctoral fellow at McGill University and The Centre for Clinical Epidemiology, Lady Davis Institute, Jewish General Hospital. During her career in pharmacy, Reem's interest in pharmacoepidemiology was illuminated after noticing the limited number of high-quality large population-based studies of pediatric drug safety available. Now, she studies just that: the utilization, safety, and effectiveness of prescription drugs in children, a vulnerable population often prescribed drugs that are "off-label" and lacking clinical trials. Reem is excited to contribute clinically relevant results regarding drug safety in children through her CNODES traineeship and post-doctoral position.


Read full trainee profile


Colin R. Dormuth is the Training Team lead.

Find his bio here.



The CNODES Methods Team has been active, with a number of research projects and training initiatives. At the beginning of 2020, a supplement was published in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety, with a number of papers including methodological advances and some history on the network (available open access here). The team continues to work on innovative methods, and in collaboration with the Database Development Team and the Common Data Model Team to develop and document best research practices.


Menglan Pang, a former CNODES research assistant, recently graduated from the McGill Biostatistics PhD program; her thesis on accelerated failure time models was supervised by Robert Platt and Michal Abrahamowicz, co-PI of the CAN-AIM DSEN team. Mireille Schnitzer, methods lead on the recent CNODES DOACs project, published a tutorial on time-varying research problems.


The methods team has a busy 2021 underway, with new projects planned using the Common Data Model, on best practices in study of medications and pregnancy outcomes, and on methods challenges in the study of COVID-19 vaccines.


Robert W. Platt is the Methods Team lead. Find his bio here.


The Database Development Team is responsible for projects that explore new multi-site databases for drug safety and effectiveness studies, as well as projects to enhance the usability of existing databases. We are pleased to advise that beginning in December 2020, Dr. Wattamon Srisakuldee, Associate Director of the Data Science Platform, George and Fay Yee Centre for Healthcare Innovation, will be providing part-time project coordination support for the team. Dr. Srisakuldee has significant experience in research using administrative health data and project management.


Current projects include:

  • Assessing the quality of electronic medical records in multiple provinces for capturing behavioural risk factors and clinical markers, which could be used for risk adjustment in CNODES studies.
  • Describing the validity of an algorithm to ascertain cardiovascular deaths using administrative health data. The study data were collected for the project entitled "Utilization, Effectiveness, and Safety of the SGLT2 Inhibitors Among Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus".
  • Exploring the development of an Algorithms Inventory to capture the drug exposure, outcome, and comorbidity measures used in CNODES studies. This project will benefit from the work that we have completed with Health Data Research Network Canada to develop a National Algorithms Algorithm for multi-jurisdictional measures of population health, health service use, and the determinants of health.

Lisa Lix is the Database Development Team lead. Find her bio here.

Code for identification of author gender in journal articles

now available in GitHub


The KT Team has developed a code for using citation tools to study gender and authorship for CNODES articles. This is now available on GitHub, and open-source repository service for source code for various programming languages with a revision control system. Sam Stewart, a member of this study team, has contributed his code for others to inspect, use, and build on. It may be useful for both DSEN and other research projects.


Update on KT Team conference and article activities


The KT Team presented their work on using bibliometric indicators to measure uptake and impact of CNODES research at two recent virtual conferences: the Canadian Knowledge Mobilization Forum (November 24-26, 2020) and the 36th International Conference on Pharmacoepidemiology and Therapeutic Risk Management (September 16-17, 2020). They also presented preliminary results from their analysis of gender and authorship of CNODES research and the literature that cites this research at the Canadian Association for Population Therapeutics Annual Conference (October 26-27, 2020) and through two talks delivered to Dalhousie University audiences (the Women in Research Caucus (December 9, 2020) and the Initiative for Medication Management, Policy Analysis, Research & Training (September 23, 2020).


The KT Team also published their framework for evaluating CNODES' knowledge translation efforts in the Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety (PDS) CNODES supplement. This article was among the top 10% most downloaded papers from PDS in the 12 months following its online publication.


Ingrid Sketris is the Knowledge Translation Team lead. Find her bio here.



Save-the-Date | Virtual Monthly Seminars



  • Wednesday, January 20, 2021 (Recording here) | Dr. Elisabetta Patorno, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Hardvard Medical School
  • Wednesday, February 17, 2021 | Dr. Rishi Desai, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School
  • Wednesday, March 17, 2021 | Dr. Michael L. Jackson, Kaiser Permanente Research Institute and University of Washington
  • Wednesday, April 21, 2021 | Dr. Jacques LeLorier, Université de Montréal
  • Wednesday, May 19, 2021 | Dr. Deshayne B. Fell, University of Ottawa
  • Wednesday, June 16, 2021 | Dr. Michele L. Jonsson-Funk, University of North Carolina

All seminars will take place virtually at 2:00 PM (EST). Details of each session will be sent out monthly. For more information, please email info@cnodes.ca.


CNODES Semi-Annual Meeting Recordings


In November 2020, CNODES hosted their first virtual semi-annual meeting featuring a variety of guest speakers and sessions:

  • Observational Studies for Real-World Evidence: Challenges and Opportunities
  • Implementing the Prevalent New User Design in Multi-Database Studies: Practical Challenges and Lessons Learned
  • Drug Safety in Pregnancy: Challenges and Solutions in the Modern Era of Pharmacoepidemiology
  • Trainee Research Roundup
  • Disseminating your Research Evidence: Creating an End of Grant KT Plan
  • Health Data Research Network Canada: An Overview
  • Biases in Evaluating Safety and Effectiveness of Drugs for COVID-19: Designing Real-World Evidence Studies
  • Using R for Analysis of Administrative Data

If you missed any of these sessions, be sure to check out the recordings at the link below.


Watch sessions


There's Always Evidence...


Dates: Tuesday, February 9, 2021 | 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM (ET)


There’s solid agreement that decisions in health care that are informed by hard facts are likely to be better than decisions made based on gut instinct or something your brother’s best friend’s second cousin says his grandmother’s neighbour told him. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses are regarded as the gold standard for evidence, but they are not always readily available to inform a specific clinical, policy, or health management decision. In this webinar series, experts will demonstrate that there is always evidence if you know where to look.


Register here


Enabling Insight: Tools for Exploration and Data Quality Assessment of Administrative Data Files


Date: Wednesday, March 3, 2021 | 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (PDT)

Data used in the administration of public or private programs can be a powerful resource to guide evaluation and planning. Understanding different aspects of administrative data quality is critical for informed use of such data files for analyses. This presentation follows up on the previous Power of Population Data Science Webinar that introduced the Data File Orientation Toolkit as a resource to provide a framework and code for readily enabling data quality evaluation of administrative data sources. This presentation will share NORC at the University of Chicago’s data quality assessment tools, actively demonstrate how to apply the tools to administrative data files, and provide practical guidance for data quality assessment. We will show how these tools can assist researchers with exploring a data file and examining different dimensions of data quality, including checks on data accuracy, the completeness of the records, and the comparability of the data over time and among subgroups of interest.


Register for the webinar


Replication of studies and systematic reviews: why, when, and how?


Date: Thursday, February 11, 2021 | 12:00 - 1:00 PM (EST)


Presenters: Dr. Brigitte Vachon & Dr. Sathya Karunananthan

Learning objectives:

  • Understand what is, and what is not, replication research.
  • Recognize barriers to replication and strategies to increase replication in research.
  • Identify when systematic review replication is useful, and when it is wasteful.

Register for the webinar


CANSSI National Seminar Series



  • Thursday, February 25, 2021 | Dylan Small, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
  • Thursday, March 25, 2021 | Fabrizia Mealli, Università degli Studi di Firenze

CANSSI is proud to announce a series of nationally broadcast seminars, to be held once a month between September and April. Students may be further involved via journal clubs and student-only meetings with the speakers following each seminar.


Seminars will be broadcast live on the fourth Thursday of the month from 1:00-2:30 PM (EST). Students will meet virtually with the speaker from 3:00-4:00 PM (EST).


Register here



Introduction to Pharmacoepidemiology


Date: Wednesday-Thursday, March 30-April 1, 2021


Pharmacoepidemiology is a key discipline for understanding the safety of medicines. It is also being increasingly recognised as a practical tool for supporting risk management and in planning safety activities at the time medicines are authorised. The course focuses on development of practical skills and it would benefit staff across industry, regulatory authorities and academia. This introduction will be suitable both for those with no previous experience in pharmacoepidemiology, as well as those with basic knowledge that they wish to expand. Registration costs £952.


Register for the course




Date: Thursday-Wednesday, June 10-June 30, 2021


Columbia University's Department of Epidemiology summer institute is called episummer@columbia. It provides opportunities to gain foundational knowledge and applied skills for advancing population health research. episummer@columbia's intensive short non-credit courses are offered in synchronous or asynchronous online learning formats.


Register here



Abstract Submission | 37th ICPE Annual Conference


ISPE is now accepting abstracts for their 2021 ICPE Annual Conference, at the Washington State Convention Centre on August 21-25, 2021.

  • Regular Abstract Submission
    • Deadline: February 12, 2021

Submit abstract



Joint Statistical Meetings 2021 | Contributed Abstract Submission


Deadline: Wednesday, April 14, 2021


JSM (the Joint Statistical Meetings) is the largest gathering of statisticians and data scientists held in North America. It is also one of the broadest, with topics ranging from statistical applications to methodology and theory to the expanding boundaries of statistics, such as analytics and data science. JSM also offers a unique opportunity for statisticians in academia, industry, and government to exchange ideas and explore opportunities for collaboration. Beginning statisticians (including current students) can learn from and interact with senior members of the profession.


Submit abstract




Health System Impact Fellowship


Deadline: Thursday, February 18, 2021


The Health System Impact (HSI) Fellowship (for doctoral trainees and post-doctoral fellows) provides highly-qualified doctoral trainees and post-doctoral fellows studying health services and policy research (HSPR), or related fields, a unique opportunity to apply their research and analytic talents to critical challenges in health care that are being addressed by health system and related organizations (e.g., public, private for-profit, not-for-profit, and Indigenous health organizations that are not universities) outside of the traditional university setting, and to also develop professional experience, new skills, and networks.


Apply here




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