By Michael Oliveira

Dr. Kamran Khan, a scientist at St. Michael’s Hospital’s Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute and founder and CEO of BlueDot, has won a $10,000 Innovation Award from the Ernest C. Manning Foundation for his work on Explorer, a web application designed to help public health and security officials analyze, visualize, and layer diverse global and local datasets to assess infectious disease risks.

The award judges said Dr. Khan’s work “has the potential to revolutionize how public health agencies – in Canada and across the globe – harness the power of data to mitigate risk and inform decisions.”

Dr. Khan said BlueDot, which launched in 2013, was inspired by Toronto’s SARS crisis in 2003.

“As a clinician on the front lines in New York City, where West Nile virus first appeared in North America, and then in Toronto when SARS crippled the city, it was clear to me that the world would be experiencing more of these high-impact outbreaks,” Dr. Khan said.

“But as a scientist, the ability to produce and distribute valuable information to decision-makers was limited by the slow process of publishing in academic journals. By fusing the academic mindset of discovery with ‘disruptive technology’ in big data analysis and visualization, I knew we would have a far greater impact in responding to rapidly evolving outbreaks in real time.”

Read more about Dr. Khan’s award win.

About St. Michael’s Hospital

St. Michael’s Hospital provides compassionate care to all who enter its doors. The hospital also provides outstanding medical education to future health care professionals in more than 29 academic disciplines. Critical care and trauma, heart disease, neurosurgery, diabetes, cancer care, care of the homeless and global health are among the Hospital’s recognized areas of expertise. Through the Keenan Research Centre and the Li Ka Shing International Healthcare Education Centre, which make up the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, research and education at St. Michael’s Hospital are recognized and make an impact around the world. Founded in 1892, the hospital is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto.

St. Michael’s Hospital with Providence Healthcare and St. Joseph’s Health Centre now operate under one corporate entity as of August 1, 2017. United, the three organizations serve patients, residents and clients across the full spectrum of care, spanning primary care, secondary community care, tertiary and quaternary care services to post-acute through rehabilitation, palliative care and long-term care, while investing in world-class research and education.