Samuel StewartPhD

Associate Professor and Director, Health Data Nova Scotia

Mailing Address: 
Room 408, 4th Floor, 5790 University Avenue PO Box 15000, Halifax, NS Canada B3H 4R2
Research Topics:
  • Secondary health data
  • Administrative health data
  • Knowledge translation
  • Health data analytics
  • Meta-analysis
  • Decision support and shared decision making


  • 2014 - PhD, Health Informatics (Dalhousie University)
  • 2008 - MMath (University of Waterloo)
  • 2006 - BSc (University of King’s College)

Brief bio  

Dr. Stewart is a trained health informatician with a keen interest in health data, health research and communication technologies. He has considerable experience in the field with numerous publications in both technical/medical journals and conference publications. He has research collaboration experience across the entire medical research community.

Research interests

Dr. Stewart’s research focuses on a broad range of secondary uses of health data.  Through his role at HDNS he works on a variety of secondary data projects, ranging from Master’s and Undergraduate medicine research projects to multi-province and international collaborations.  He is also interested in all dimensions of meta-analysis, including traditional, network and individual patient data meta-analyses, with a strong focus on effective communication of meta-analysis results.  Other research areas of interest include machine learning for health, natural language processing and social network analysis.

Selected publications

  • Hayden JA, Wilson MN, Stewart S On behalf of Chronic Low Back Pain IPD Meta-Analysis Group, et al. Exercise treatment effect modifiers in persistent low back pain: an individual participant data meta-analysis of 3514 participants from 27 randomised controlled trials. British Journal of Sports Medicine 2020;54:1277-1278.
  • Mohammadhassanzadeh H, Sketris I, Traynor R, Alexander S, Winquist B, Stewart SA. Using Natural Language Processing to Examine the Uptake, Content, and Readability of Media Coverage of a Pan-Canadian Drug Safety Research Project: Cross-Sectional Observational Study. JMIR Form Res 2020;4(1):e13296. doi: 10.2196/13296
  • Stewart SA, Clive AO, Maskell NA, Penz E(2018). Evaluating quality of life and cost implications of prophylactic radiotherapy in mesothelioma: Health economic analysis of the SMART trial. PLoS ONE 13(2):e0190257.
  • Hill-Taylor B, Walsh KA, Stewart S, Hayden J, Byrne S, Sketris IS. Effectiveness of the STOPP/START (Screening Tool of Older Persons' potentially inappropriate Prescriptions/Screening Tool to Alert doctors to the Right Treatment) criteria: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled studies. J Clin Pharm Ther. 2016 Apr;41(2):158-69. doi: 10.1111/jcpt.12372. Epub 2016 Mar 17. PMID: 26990017.
  • Stewart SA, Abidi S, Parker L, Bernstein M, Abidi SSR. Clinical Guideline-Driven Personalized Self-Management Diary for Paediatric Cancer Survivors. 25th European Medical Informatics Conference (MIE2014). Istanbul, August 31-September 3, 2014
  • Stewart SA, Abidi SSR. Applying social network analysis to understand the knowledge sharing behavior of practitioners in a clinical discussion forum. Journal of Medical Internet Research 2012; 14(6): e170. Doi:10.2196/jmir.1982
  • Stewart SA, Abidi SSR. An infobutton for web 2.0 clinical discussions: the knowledge linkage framework. IEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine 2012;16(1): 129-135.
  • Stewart SA, Abidi SSR. Linking like-minded professionals within an online medical community based on their message content. Exploiting Health Informatics for Connected, Collaborative and Customized Patient Care - Proceedings of the 16th International Symposium on Health Information Management Research Management Research – ISHIMR 2013. Halifax NS:  Dalhousie University/University of Sheffield, 2013, pp. 125-138.

Selected awards and honours  

  • 2015 Canada Health Infoway Data Impact Challenge, runner-up, $10,000
  • 2013 Best Paper, 16th International Symposium on Health Information Management Research (ISHIMR 2013)
  • 2012 Steven Huesing Scholarship for top Canadian Graduate Student in Health Informatics
  • 2010 Runner-up at MEDINFO2010 student paper competition

Service and Activity

  • Dalhousie REDCap server administrator (
  • Dalhousie Health Sciences REB member
  • MSSU NS Steering Committee
  • MSSU Scientific Leads Committee
  • CH&E Curriculum Committee Chair
  • Teaching
    • HINF 6030/CHE5019 – Introduction to Biostatistics, Dalhousie University
    • HINF 6102 - Health Informatics Flow and Standards
    • HINF 6210 – Data Mining for Health Informatics (sabbatical replacement)


  • Statistics Society of Canada
  • COACH, Canada’s Health Informatics Association


  • Assistant Professor, Medical Informatics, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS (2015-present)
  • Post-doctoral Researcher, NICHE Research Group, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS (2014-2015)
  • Research statistician, Dept. of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK (2013-2015)
  • Statistical Consultant, Department of Statistics, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS (2009-2012)