Dr. Zahi Touma

2022 CRA Emerging Investigator

Dr. Jessica Widdifield, PhD

Dr. Jessica Widdifield is an epidemiologist and health services researcher by training and completed her doctoral studies at the University of Toronto’s Institute for Health Policy, Management and Evaluation (IHPME) between 2009 to 2013. Her postdoctoral training was at McGill University’s Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (2013 to 2017). In 2017, she joined Sunnybrook Research Institute and ICES as a Scientist, and Assistant Professor at IHPME where she is a director for courses on introductory and advanced health services research methods in the Clinical Epidemiology and Health Services Research programs.

Dr. Widdifield leads an innovative and successful research program, focused on outcomes and health services research in rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) using modern epidemiological and biostatistical methods. She has published over 55 publications providing real-world evidence to enhance patient care, patient outcomes, and health system efficiency and sustainability for RMDs across the care continuum.

Her expertise focuses on using secondary health data sources for research and surveillance, making important contributions to advancing the understanding of rheumatology workforce changes, and the population-level burden of disease, health determinants, outcomes of care, healthcare delivery and quality of care for patients with RMDs.

To date, she has been awarded several distinctions. She is a Banting Scholar, a recipient of the Arthritis Alliance of Canada’s postdoctoral prize, the Arthritis Society’s postdoctoral award, and the Arthritis Society Star’s career development award. She has garnered a reputation nationally and internationally for her research excellence and her commitments to strengthen rheumatology research collaboration across Canada.