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UOIT’s new Canada Research Chair to examine ways of advancing treatment of disability caused by musculoskeletal pain and injuries

Dr. Pierre Côté, Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, and Canada Research Chair in Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation.
Dr. Pierre Côté, Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, and Canada Research Chair in Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation.

OSHAWA, ONTARIO – The University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) proudly announces a new Tier 2 Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation, awarded to Dr. Pierre Côté, Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS). Dr. Côté’s CRC is valued at $500,000 over five years.

The primary objective of the research program led by Dr. Côté is to develop and test interventions aimed at reducing disability related to musculoskeletal (MSK) pain in Canadians. The number of Canadians reporting a disability between 2001 and 2006 grew by 750,000 people; yet, few interventions are effective in preventing or rehabilitating MSK disabilities such as back pain, whiplash injuries and arthritis.

“MSK conditions are responsible for nearly half of all disabilities experienced in Canada and the related health-care costs continue to skyrocket,” said Dr. Côté. “Little research has been done to-date to understand the pathways to disability, and clinical treatments produce only small benefits. As a Canada Research Chair I look forward to developing and testing evidence-based interventions that address the physical, psychological and societal issues associated with musculoskeletal pain and disability.”

“The University of Ontario Institute of Technology is delighted Dr. Côté will be advancing innovative developments in this field of research and allowing UOIT to become a centre of excellence for such health-related research,” said Dr. Michael Owen, Vice-President, Research, Innovation and International. “His research program will be a catalyst for change and discovery related to disability prevention. We are excited about the long-term outcomes of his investigations, which align with UOIT’s commitment to solving significant societal problems of global importance.”

“Our government remains committed to attracting and retaining the world’s best researchers, creating jobs and strengthening our economy,” said The Honourable Greg Rickford, Minister of State for Science and Technology. “Through programs such as the Canada Research Chairs, we are supporting cutting-edge research at Canadian universities and fostering innovation by helping researchers bring their ideas to the marketplace, to benefit Canadians and improve our quality of life.”

Dr. Côté graduated as a chiropractor from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College (CMCC) in 1989. In 1996 he obtained a Master of Surgery degree from the University of Saskatchewan where he studied the Epidemiology of Neck and Back Pain in the general population. He completed his PhD in Epidemiology and a minor in Research Bioethics at the University of Toronto in 2002. In 2003, he was awarded a five-year New Investigator Award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Prior to joining UOIT, he was a scientist in the Division of Health Care and Outcomes Research at the Toronto Western Research Institute and an Associate Professor of Epidemiology at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. He was a member of the Scientific Secretariat of the 2000-2010 Bone and Joint Task Force on Neck Pain and its Associated Disorders and also held a 2010 appointment as Chair of the Catastrophic Impairment Expert Panel. 

He is currently the Chair of the Minor Injury Treatment Protocol Project funded by the Financial Services Commission of Ontario and the Director of the UOIT-CMCC Centre for the Study of Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation. He was recently appointed to a six-year term with the Research Council of the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC).

Dr. Côté also holds appointments at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health and at the Institute of Health Policy Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto.

UOIT has established an outstanding reputation as a research-intensive university. UOIT has filed more than 30 patent applications and been appointed five prestigious CRCs, with another five in development and five Industrial Research Chairs. UOIT research is focused on six priority areas, all of which emphasize its multidisciplinary market and community focus: Advanced Manufacturing for 21st Century Innovation; Energy and the Environment; Human Health and Community Wellness; Information and Communications Technology and Informatics; Life Sciences and Biotechnology; and Education for the 21st Century. These priority areas align with federal and provincial research and innovation priorities in the context of Advantage Canada's Federal Science and Technology Strategy and the Ontario Innovation Agenda.

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