At Surrey Place, our research and evaluation activities are driven by two main research themes: Health and Well-being and Improving Practice.
Research falling under the theme of Health and Well-being is relevant to a broad range of services at the system and practitioner level. Many are large scale projects and programs that explicitly aim to influence government policy. The issues studied directly impact on the quality of life of our clients and their families. These would include, but are not limited to, physical and mental health, inclusion, personal development, independence, leisure, community supports and the service system.
Below is a full list of projects and programs that aim to influence government policy:
Surrey Place is a partner in the Health Care Access Research and Developmental Disabilities program (H-CARDD). Individuals with developmental disabilities often have complex health care needs and experience difficulty accessing appropriate health care. H-CARDD aims to address these issues and to enhance the overall health and well-being of individuals with developmental disabilities by informing improved healthcare policy and services through knowledge generation and development of tools and training.The program includes a dedicated team of scientists, policymakers, and health care providers, working collaboratively under the direction of Dr. Yona Lunsky (Research Head, Dual Diagnosis Program at CAMH). Other partners involved in H-CARDD are the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES), the University of Toronto, the University of Ottawa, Queen’s University, York University, Lakehead University, Sunnybrook Hospital, the University of Ontario Institute of Technology and Women’s College Hospital, the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services, and the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
To learn more about the program please visit the H-CARDD website: www.hcardd.ca
Surrey Place is a partner in the GO4KIDDS (Great Outcomes For Kids Impacted by Severe Developmental Disabilities) project. The project was initiated by a group of researchers and clinicians from several agencies and universities who saw the need to provide a better understanding about the health, well-being and social inclusion of school-aged children with severe developmental disabilities (DD) and the experiences of their families. It is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research through the Bright Futures for Children with Disabilities initiative. GO4KIDDS is led by Dr. Adrienne Perry of York University.To learn more about GO4KIDDS please visit the website at http://www.go4kidds.ca/home.htm
Surrey Place is a partner agency in the HELPS Inc project (Health, Education and Learning Partnerships Promoting Social Inclusion of Children with Developmental Delays and Disabilities). The project explores the challenges and successes that parents, healthcare professionals, and educators experience in helping young children with developmental delays and disabilities transition into elementary school. The project team includes a multidisciplinary group of researchers from several universities (Queen’s University, York University, Université du Québec à Trois Rivières, Université du Québec à Montréal, Ryerson University and Dalhousie) and Surrey Place as well as parents, healthcare professionals, educators, healthcare and education students, and other stakeholders from five centres across three provinces (Halifax, Nova Scotia; Kingston and Toronto, Ontario; and Montréal and Trois-Rivières, Quebec). It is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research through the Bright Futures for Children with Disabilities initiative. HELPS Inc is led by Dr. Patricia Minnes of Queen’s University.
- International Family Quality of Life Project
Surrey Place is one of the lead agencies of the International Family Quality of Life Project. The project examines the quality of life of families who have one or more members with an intellectual or developmental disability. It was initiated in 1997 by researchers from Australia, Canada, and Israel. The survey tool used to collect data in the project has been translated into over 20 languages and researchers from over 20 countries are involved. Additional information about the project, the downloadable Family Quality of Life Survey – 2006, and other resources can be found here.
Research falling under the theme of Improving Practice is concerned with the client populations, outcomes and clinical processes associated with specific services. Many of these projects can be characterized as program evaluations, program development, or quality assurance initiatives. The goal of such projects is to provide evidence to support improvements in the services being studied, below the full list projects
- Program Evaluation
Our evaluation work focuses on internal services and programs. We also support evaluation activities for community-based partners. We work with clinicians and community partners to:
- identify and/or develop evaluation tools that are both clinically relevant and appropriate for use with our client population
- implement evaluation protocols
- monitor and evaluate treatment outcomes
We support evaluation activities for all Developmental Service age programs, the Surrey Place Autism Programs, the Community Networks of Specialized Care, and within the Developmental Services Toronto (DSTO) partnership.
PRISM- R (Program for Innovative Self-Management – Revised) is a model of short-term, individual psychotherapy for higher-functioning adolescents with developmental disabilities and/or autism and mental health concerns such as interpersonal, emotional, or behavioural problems. It is based on the existing PRISM approach developed by Dr. David B. Wexler for children without developmental disabilities. PRISM-R is delivered as 16 weekly, hour-long sessions. Each session incorporates sections on emotional self-awareness, cognitive-behavioural tasks to build coping skills, and self-soothing practices. Mentalization is a skill that is central to our adapted model. It is taught to each adolescent in therapy to help them look at situations more carefully. Following the individual sessions, up to 6 parent–adolescent sessions begin. These sessions help parents to support the adolescent’s new abilities to cope with difficult feelings and thoughts and to use their new coping strategies. The adaptation of PRISM to PRISM-R at Surrey Place was led by Dr. Lynne Sinclair. The process included an implementation evaluation funded through an Expertise Mobilization Award from the Provincial Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health and an outcome evaluation funded by the Ministry of Child and Youth Services.
- Autism Treatment Network
The Autism Treatment Network (ATN) is a network of treatment and research centers across North America dedicated to improving medical care for children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The ATN includes a large network of Clinical Care Centers offering comprehensive diagnosis and treatment. The goal of the ATN is to improve medical treatment of children and adolescents with ASD by establishing standards of clinical care based on research and shared clinical practice. Many children with ASD present with comorbid medical conditions which, when treated, can significantly improve their quality of life. The ATN is dedicated to establishing these standards of care for autism in the medical community through open research collaboration, trainee mentorship, medical education and participation in conferences. Read more about the Autism Treatment Network.
- Developmental Disabilities Primary Care Initiative
Developmental Disabilities Primary Care Initiative has brought together clinical experts and researchers to improve primary care and quality of life of adults with developmental disabilities. With leadership and coordination from Surrey Place, and funding from the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services and the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, evidence-based guidelines and tools have been developed to help primary care providers, caregivers and family members to follow best practices in the care of these patients. Check our DDPCI resource pages for more information.