Ottawa renews $1.4-million Canada Research Chair at York

Joel Katz
Joel Katz
Joel Katz

The federal government has renewed a Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Health Psychology at York enabling Faculty of Health Professor Joel Katz to advance his research in the psychological, emotional and biomedical factors involved in acute and chronic pain.

As a Tier 1 CRC, Katz will receive $1.4 million over seven years. The renewal is part of a package of CRC new appointments and renewals announced Friday, Dec. 2 at the University of Toronto by Kirsty Duncan, minister of science.

“I would like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to the new and renewed Canada Research Chairs,” said Duncan. “The Government of Canada is proud to support talented researchers whose hard work will improve our scientific understanding and strengthen Canada’s reputation for research excellence. The Chairs’ efforts will also provide us with the evidence needed to inform decisions that help us build a vibrant society and a strong middle class.”

The government announced an investment of more than $173 million in funding to support a total of 203 new and renewed Canada Research Chairs at 48 postsecondary institutions across the country.

“York is delighted to welcome the successful renewal of a Canada Research Chair. The CRC program, which helps to support some of the world’s best researchers in building their innovative research programs, continues to make a strong contribution to the development of research at York,” said Robert Haché, vice-president research and innovation at York University.

The research conducted by Katz will make significant contributions to our knowledge of pain and its management through prevention and rehabilitation.

The amount of suffering caused by pain is enormous. Prolonged pain impairs quality of life, demands constant attention, and drains sufferers and their families of vital energy. Life with chronic pain often deteriorates into a relentless search for relief.

As Canada Research Chair in Health Psychology, Katz is seeking ways to minimize the intensity of acute pain in patients after surgery.

Katz is also researching how painkillers can help avoid the transition from acute pain to chronic pain. He is examining how painkillers may reduce the intensity of pain and minimize the chances of developing chronic post-surgical pain.

In addition, he is studying pain in infants, children and adults to identify biological, psychological, and social risk and protective factors that predict the transition of acute pain to chronic pain after surgery, injury and accidents.

For more information, visit the Canada Research Chairs website.