The Unit’s

LHS leader in Québec

What we offer

The Unit supports the continuous improvement of the Québec health system by making its expertise in learning health systems available to the network.


  • By supporting projects that integrate patient-oriented research and contribute to the learning health system
  • By supporting project teams in improving clinical or organizational practices

The Unit offers support in three ways

  • Consultation
  • Training
  • Tools

It deploys its expertise through 5 axis and 4 SSA-RUISSS teams:

  • Partnership Axis
  • Data Management Axis
  • Data to Knowledge Axis
  • Change Management Axis
  • Capacity Building Axis
  • SSA-RUISSS team Université de Montréal
  • SSA-RUISSS team McGill
  • SSA-RUISSS team Université Laval
  • SSA-RUISSS team Université de Sherbrooke

LHS Portal

The Unit makes its services available through its LHS Portal. You can apply for support online. Several types of requests are possible:

  • Exploratory session
  • Support letter
  • Support for a research grant application
  • Support for an ongoing research project
  • Patient-Public-Organizational Partnership
  • Training
  • Community of Pratice
  • Tool/platform

Are you?

  • a researcher?
  • a decision maker?
  • a health or social services worker?
  • a patient or caregiver?

The Unit’s support offer is available to any person or organization working in health and social services in Québec. It provides you with the EXPERTISE YOU NEED to integrate partnership, data science and change management into your project in order to MAXIMIZE ITS VALUE.

Patient-Public Partnerships in health care and social services

  • Module 101 – Fundamentals of the patient-public partnership (E/F), length: 1.5 hr.
  • Module 201 – Patient partnerships in health research: First steps (E/F), length: 1.5 hr.
  • Module 201 – Le partenariat avec les patient(e)s dans la gestion de la santé: premières étapes
  • Module 301 – Consolider le partenariat patient – évaluation des pratiques et amélioration continue
  • Module Recrutement de patient(e)s partenaires en recherche, durée 3 h
  • Module Évaluation du partenariat patient en recherche, durée 1 h 30
  • Le patient, partenaire du système de santé apprenant, durée 1 h
  • Atelier étapes de revues systématiques – implications des patient(e)s partenaires, durée 2 h
  • Formation aux concepts clés de l’approche réaliste pour la recherche axée sur les patient(e)s
  • Formation en recherche participative organisationnelle (RPO)
  • Understanding research (videos), (E/F), length 3 hr.

Support for implementation and issues related to the patient-public partnership

  • Advice for implementing a partnered research strategy
  • Support for the implementation of a partnered research strategy (recruitment of patients and members of the public as research partners, facilitation of thematic meetings with the perspective of co-construction)
  • Advice on specific issues related to partnered research (ethics, remuneration, partnership operationalization, etc.)

Implementing partnerships in a clinical setting

Support for the identification and recruitment of patient partners and members of the public

Training of patient partners, members of the public and professional research staff

Coaching of patient partners, members of the public and professional research staff

Evaluation of the process and impacts of patient-public partnered research

Support for the implementation of information monitoring on a subject related to patient-oriented research – eSRAP

Guiding the patient-public partnership

Guiding organizational participatory research

  • RPO, guide de recherche participative organisationnelle (OPR, organizational participatory research guide)
  • OPR, organizational participatory research questionnaire

Evaluating partnerships

  • CoPeval, Community of Practice evaluation questionnaire
  • Partnership evaluation toolkit

Diversifying partnerships

  • ENGAGE, participatory methods and visual and auditory tools to engage vulnerable populations in research
  • Espace Proximité, training and knowledge distribution platform

Awareness-building and promoting partnerships

  • Video, explanation of how health data research can improve care
  • Video, explanation of consent for using health data in research
  • Video, what does it mean to be a patient partner?
  • Video, patient-oriented research during the pandemic: how and why? (also applies in contexts other than the pandemic)

Other items

  • Understanding research (explains basic health research terms in simple language)
  • DDS (interaction application that provides an integrated overview of all frontline services in Quebec)

Data management

  • Training on mixed methods
  • Introduction to qualitative research, length: 3 hr.
  • Data collection methods in qualitative research, length: 3 hr.
  • Tool validation

Data platform services

  • Support to apply for access care trajectory data from the TorSaDE cohort (data from respondents to different cycles of the Canadian Community Health Survey, and medical and administrative data)

Consultation related to data storage

Support for consent policies for the sharing and storing of data as well as for transparency issues

Support for the use of tools for data extraction, translation, organization and structuring

Some services and tools may not be available currently for legal reasons.

Extract, translate, organize, structure data

  • Guidelines for data security (data collection/destruction/storage/saving and access/analysis/sharing)
  • DEDIP (list of criteria to guide extraction of essential data to describe population interventions)
  • HADO ontology, administration of health care
  • PDRO ontology, prescribing of medication
  • LABO ontology, DEMO laboratory results, identification of people in the health care system
  • MOPIQ ontology, Quebec computerized prescriptions
  • PARS3 (Learning platform designed to link the queries of care and research teams with information systems specific to each data custodian. It allows data to be transmitted securely to other secure third-party systems through which the requesting unit can access it)
  • CLARET (Transparency- and consent-driven ethical framework designed to share research data)

Expanding the use of data

Training workshop on health economics and health economics evaluation (17 Écosanté training videos)

Methodology development and support services

  • Support for the development or adaptation and validation of statistical methods (Bayesian methodology, transcultural adaptation of tools, questionnaire creation and validation, etc.)
  • Support for qualitative methods
  • Support for mixed methods
  • Support for other methodologies or methods

Support for some artificial intelligence disciplines

Support for economic evaluation (data collection, analysis and interpretation)

Some services and tools may not be available currently for legal reasons.

Platform trial interfaces and DSQ interfaces

  • Web interface for platform trials (design and simulation of adapted clinical trials to determine sample size and requirements for measures to evaluate competing treatment alternatives)
  • DSQ interface (facilitates use of the Dossier Santé Québec and offers practical solutions for organizing data in a clinical context)

Data source

  • Selection-algorithm directories for TorSaDE—usage fees
  • EODQ (measurement of questionnaire origin and development)

Evaluate, validate, generate questionnaires

  • ATC_RR (12 steps for transcultural adaptation of questionnaires while retaining measurement qualities)
  • BayesiCALLY (quickly validate an ad hoc questionnaire when its sample is still small)

PROMs translated into French (patient-reported outcome measures)

Économie de la santé

  • CoPaQ (tool to measure health care costs for patients)

Change management

  • Training workshop on end-of-grant knowledge-transfer, length: 5 hr.
  • Strategic aspects of communication between researcher and decision-makers
  • Training workshop on implementing innovation in health care and social services, length: 3 hr.
  • Training workshop on evaluating the potential for scaling up health innovations, length: 1.5 hr.
  • Design of shared decision-making aids in health care (15 videos), length: 2 hr.
  • Training workshop on deliberative knowledge transfer workshops, length: 3 hr.
  • Training workshop on deliberative workshops, length: 2 days
  • Tool validation
  • Knowledge transfer summer school, length: 3 days
  • Literature reviews: why you get lost and how to find yourself again
  • Basic training workshop on rapid reviews, length: 3 hr.
  • Basic training workshop on Cochrane systematic reviews, length: 3 days
  • Introduction to systematic review and meta-analysis, length: 3 hr.
  • Protocol review
  • Understanding research (videos), (E/F), length 3 hr.

Change management support

  • From planning the desired change, to selecting the care outcome and reviewing publications, to implementing change and continuous improvement

Support for knowledge transfer

  • Implementation consulting and support for:
    • literature search in electronic databases and/or grey literature
    • Cochrane and other kinds of systematic review, and rapid review
    • meta-analysis of intervention studies, diagnostic studies, observational studies, network meta-analysis studies
    • knowledge transfer plans
    • deliberative works for knowledge transfer
    • involving decision-makers in POR

Support for the design of tools to aid in decision-making

Support for implementation of information monitoring on a given subject

Support for the development of a literature review

Making informed decisions

  • Literature review toolbox
  • ATCER (assigns a probability that publications are scientific studies)
  • CATeval (facilitates study quality appraisal)
  • eSRAP (collaborative monitoring platform to stay up to date on the latest scientific publications—usage fee)

Evaluate, validate, generate questionnaires

  • ATC_RR (12 steps for transcultural adaptation of questionnaires while retaining measurement qualities)
  • EODQ (measurement of questionnaire origin and development)

Disseminate knowledge

  • Guide for drafting a research practice dissemination plan

Mobilize and use knowledge

  • Evaluation tool for the potential to scale up health care innovations
  • Periodical bibliography database on implementing health care innovations.

Service request

When you apply for support from the Unité de soutien SSA Québec, you are taking part in the emergence of a learning health system (LHS). We offer three types of support: training, consultation and tools.