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The Northern Health Human Resources Research Unit was founded in 1992 by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care as a health-system linked research unit with sites at Lakehead and Laurentian. In 1997, the mandate was expanded and the centre renamed to the Centre for Rural and Northern Health Research (CRaNHR).
In 2013, CRaNHR at Lakehead University became an autonomous and independently-funded research centre, continuing its established program of research into rural, northern and Indigenous health issues. Our objectives are to contribute to existing knowledge on rural, northern and Indigenous health and provide evidence that supports policy makers, planners and decision-makers in understanding health services delivery; documenting health status and determinants of health; and exploring factors that facilitate or impede access to socially just health care. Additionally, our work addresses education, recruitment and retention of health professionals and paraprofessionals.
Supported by peer-reviewed research grants and contracts, our staff works with an interdisciplinary core group of investigators across four faculties at Lakehead to provide high level quantitative and qualitative research into determinants of rural and northern health. We also conduct evaluative research on health services, programs and policies for provincial and federal agencies, health care organizations, and Indigenous communities. We also provide opportunities for both undergraduate and graduate student mentoring and training, with a focus on “hands on” research experience and community engagement.