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York University and partners celebrate launch of the Connected Health and Wellness Project website

TORONTO, May 23, 2014 – York University and its partners will celebrate the successful completion of the groundbreaking Connected Health and Wellness Project (CHWP) on Monday, May 26, 2014 with the launch of the new CHWP website, an innovative online portal that aims to redefine Canadian health care by offering users health information and tools with the click of a mouse or tap of their mobile device.

The new website is the legacy of the CHWP, a collaboration between 19 prominent industry, academic, and healthcare organizations across Southern Ontario that was created in 2012 with an eye towards giving people and populations the tools to improve their own health, enhancing patient safety, and offering new solutions to increase the quality and lower the cost of health services.

The project will not only ensure better health for all Canadians, but a more accessible and efficient health-care system, plus economic growth through job creation. Leadership of the CHWP was driven by York University, NexJ Systems Inc., and McMaster University, each of whom provided professional expertise in different facets of the project.

The CHWP website is a unique online hub that highlights the results of the project by offering tools to help people better manage their own health and wellness and more easily connect with health professionals – among these advances is York University’s pioneering ‘Health Coaching’ system, a new training program, curriculum and professional standards for the emerging Health Coach profession that will combine multiple skill sets in behaviour change for health promotion, disease and injury prevention, and treatment and rehabilitation.

The CHWP website also capitalizes on state-of-the-art technology: McMaster’s OSCAR electronic medical record (EMR) and MyOSCAR personal health record (PHR), involves wellness apps that patients can use to track and catalogue their medical health over their lifetime. This technology, partnered with NexJ’s Connected Wellness Platform cloud-based solution, allows patients to check in with medical professionals, family members, and health providers. Patients will also be able to book appointments online and access health apps and tools that will enable them to better manage their health and wellness.

With an aging population and an ever-increasing focus on health and wellness in our society, being able to take control of one’s own health was a key focus of the CHWP. For instance, users of the website can connect with the health coaching program, which focuses not only on wellness (healthy diet, exercise, etc.), but also on behavioural change to help them stay motivated and on track through the personal connection between the patient and health coach through mobile devices such as MyOscar or the Connected Wellness Platform.

The people-centred approach of the CHWP advances global policy trends away from a sole emphasis on acute care to a focus on prevention and wellness by harnessing e-health technology and the health coaching paradigm for healthier outcomes. The two years of work by the academic, technology and health-care innovators who partnered on the project will mean more control and access for individuals and better integration for hospitals, clinics, and healthcare practitioners.

In addition to York University, McMaster University and NexJ Systems Inc., project collaborators who have come together to realize this vision include Seneca, George Brown and Centennial colleges, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (an affiliate of the Harvard Medical School), University Health Network, and others.

York University is pleased to host a celebration of the completion of the CHWP that has culminated in the development of the new website – the event is being held to recognize the investment of the Government of Canada and to acknowledge the hard work of 19 project partners and affiliates in this unique collaborative enterprise. Please join us in the atrium of the Life Sciences building at York University’s Keele campus on Monday, May 26 from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

WHAT: Connected Health & Wellness Project (CHWP) completion celebration and website launch

WHEN: Monday, May 26, 2014 from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm

WHERE: Atrium, Life Science Building, York University Keele campus (Building 90 on the map)

NOTE: Media are welcome to cover the event. Please RSVP with Media Relations or contact for interviews and background material.

York University is helping to shape the global thinkers and thinking that will define tomorrow. York’s unwavering commitment to excellence reflects a rich diversity of perspectives and a strong sense of social responsibility that sets us apart. A York U degree empowers graduates to thrive in the world and achieve their life goals through a rigorous academic foundation balanced by real-world experiential education. As a globally recognized research centre, York is fully engaged in the critical discussions that lead to innovative solutions to the most pressing local and global social challenges. York’s 11 faculties and 28 research centres are thinking bigger, broader and more globally, partnering with 288 leading universities worldwide. York's community is strong − 55,000 students, 7,000 faculty and staff, and more than 250,000 alumni.

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Media Contact: Gloria Suhasini, Media Relations, York University, 416-736-2100 ext. 22094 / suhasini@yorku.ca