Research Networks

Sharing resources and expertise

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BRIC NS—Building Research for Integrated Primary Healthcare in Nova Scotia—is a research network that seeks to improve primary healthcare and integrated services for people with, or at risk of developing, complex healthcare needs.  BRIC NS research is patient-oriented, which means it engages patients as partners and focuses on patient-identified priorities and improves patient outcomes.



  • building capacity in Nova Scotia for the conduct and application of patient-oriented research

  • mobilizing research efforts and encouraging investigators to apply for funding available to network members

  • creating partnerships within and across various sectors of the health care system—including public health and primary health care, as well as secondary, tertiary, home and long-term care

  • looking outside the health sector to forge new connections with such important services as education, housing and social services

  • developing connections with counterpart networks in other provinces

  • leading the way to more comprehensive approaches to improving individual and population health, health equity and health system outcomes

  • engaging patients as partners in our governance and research projects


BRIC NS is the Nova Scotia Primary and Integrated Health Care Innovations Network, an initiative of the Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR).  BRIC NS has $1 million in funding over 5 years from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation (NSHRF).  Additionally, BRIC NS has facilitated the funding of multiple primary healthcare research projects.

BRIC NS has a tri-partite leadership model to ensure that science, policy and practice are working together to identify and support priority-driven research.

  • Science Lead: Fred Burge, Department of Family Medicine, Dalhousie University

  • Clinical Lead: Rick Gibson, Primary Health Care and Department of Family Practice, Nova Scotia Health Authority

  • Policy Co-Lead: Lynn Edwards, Primary Health Care & Chronic Disease, Nova Scotia Health Authority

  • Policy Co-Lead:  Charmaine McPherson, Risk Mitigation Acute and Primary Care, Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness

BRIC NS members include individuals from across the province who have a research interest in primary and integrated healthcare.  This includes primary care practitioners, researchers, decision-makers, citizens and learners.  To learn more about BRIC NS, including how to join, visit the website.

Canadian Primary Care Sentinel Surveillance Network (CPCSSN)

For more inforamtion on the CPCSSN network, please visit the website.


Collaborative Research for Primary Healthcare originates from a Strategic Research Initiative Grant from Dalhousie University. Thisinter-faculty research team is designed tobuild collaborative primary healthcare projects that cross faculties and disciplines.  Working together are researchers from family medicine, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry, occupational and physical therapy, social work, psychology, sociology, epidemiology, health informatics, health policy and more.  Exciting developments are in the works for the coming year!  For more information, please visit us at

Maritime Family Practice Research Network


  • To develop a network of Family Practices across Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island that can collaborate on research projects to improve health care in the Maritimes.
  • To enable community Family Physicians and Nurse Practitioners to combine their relevant questions, skills and resources with the expertise and resources of academic family physicians to conduct Primary Care research.
  • To conduct and support primary care research in practice-based settings that addresses questions of importance to Family Medicine and improve health care delivery to, and the health status of, patients and their families in the Maritime provinces.


Home base: Dalhousie Family Medicine, Halifax NS
Established: 2005
Founded by: Dr. Wayne Putnam

Current Network Director: Dr. Fred Burge