June 15, 2020

Harnessing the power of data to improve diabetes research and care in Alberta

News Release

The Diabetes Infrastructure for Surveillance, Evaluation and Research (DISER) is now open for business.

(Edmonton, Alberta) June 15, 2020… Alberta now has a powerful new tool to improve diabetes management and research: Diabetes Infrastructure for Surveillance, Evaluation and Research (DISER).

Developed through extensive collaboration between Alberta Health Services (AHS) Diabetes, Obesity and Nutrition Strategic Clinical Network (DON SCN), AHS Clinical Analytics, and researchers at the University of Alberta, DISER connects six key databases in the province to provide a unified source of diabetes data. Additionally, DISER includes an online survey tool to facilitate the collection and integration of self-reported data directly from patients. This advanced data infrastructure makes Alberta better suited than ever to improve understandings of diabetes, while also improving the health and well-being of the individuals, families, and caregivers whose lives have been touched by the condition.

Alberta’s research community will benefit from access to this rich data as they tackle important questions in diabetes research, giving Albertans a better look at this debilitating disease. Researchers who wish to access this new resource and/or contribute additional data resources are encouraged to connect through https://www.ahs.ca/DISER.

DISER was made possible through partner funding from Alberta Innovates, Alberta Health, and NovoNordisk.

Quotes:

“With DISER, healthcare providers and researchers in Alberta will have better access to diabetes data than ever before. This access will accelerate our understanding of diabetes, supporting the DON SCN’s mission to prevent diabetes, to empower those with diabetes, and to transform the care of diabetes in Alberta.”
– Petra O’Connell, Senior Provincial Director, Diabetes, Obesity and Nutrition Strategic Clinical Network

“This data will support us in making sound, evidence-informed decisions about ways in which we can best provide care to Albertans living with Diabetes, which will support improved health outcomes and an enhanced quality of life for Albertans with this chronic illness.”
– Chad Mitchell, Acting-Assistant Deputy Minister, Pharmaceutical and Supplementary Benefits Division, Alberta Health

“Having enhanced access to the large linked databases with the infrastructure that DISER provides will help support research that addresses important clinical and health services issues. We are particularly interested in further linking those data to self-reported data from patient surveys.”
– Jeffrey Johnson, Alliance for Canadian Health Outcomes Research in Diabetes (ACHORD) Chair

“Alberta Innovates is proud to support foundational data infrastructure initiatives like DISER. By facilitating rapid and continuous feedback between research, practice, and patient outcomes, DISER has tremendous potential to improve health system performance, along with the quality and experience of care.”
– Tim Murphy, Vice President, Health Innovation, Alberta Innovates

“This tool will help to address knowledge gaps to enable the best care for Albertans living with diabetes. We’re proud to support researchers’ access to data given its potential to have a positive impact on the health of Albertans.”
– Béatrice Clerc, President of Novo Nordisk Canada Inc.

Background

Diabetes is a chronic illness affecting 305,000 Albertans and impacting hundreds of thousands more. It can lead to many complications requiring diligent self-care and support from multiple healthcare providers. Diabetes is on the rise in Alberta, increasing 60 per cent since the year 2000. The chronic condition costs Albertans $1.5 billion per year. The complex care of people living with diabetes, from medication to multiple healthcare providers, has been hard to track and Alberta’s data on diabetes has been fragmented.

If you are a researcher interested in using DISER for your next diabetes research project, consider joining the “Accessing DISER” webinar on June 23rd from 12-1pm. Contact don.scn@ahs.ca for details.