After five years, 2020 marks the final year for the Joule Innovation grant program. All future granting in support of the profession/population, health care systems and the community will now be undertaken through the CMA Foundation.

2020 Joule Innovation grant recipients

Joule is providing 12 grants totaling $500,000 to support innovation in five categories:

Sustainable health care
2 grants: 1 x $100,000 and 1 x $50,000

According to a 2019 report by The Lancet, health care accounts for approximately 4% of Canada's total greenhouse gas emissions — the third-highest percentage in the world, per capita. The report calls for solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prevent pollution-related deaths, consistent with health care professionals' mandate to "do no harm."

This grant category supports initiatives that address the impact of climate change on the health and well-being of Canadians.

Initiatives eligible for a grant in this category may include a product, service, process, model of care or social innovation.

Melissa Lem

Dr. Melissa Lem

Simon Berthelot

Dr. Simon Berthelot


Physician health and wellness
2 grants: 1 x $100,000 and 1x $50,000

Physician health and wellness is a critical issue for all physicians, their patients and health systems. Physicians are at a higher risk of experiencing adverse health outcomes, including personal and professional dissatisfaction, burnout, depression and suicide — with system-level barriers as key contributing factors. This has been shown to affect patient care and health system performance.

This grant category supports initiatives that promote health and wellness among physicians and medical learners.

Initiatives eligible for a grant in this category may include a product, service, process, model of care or social innovation.

Jordan Vollrath

Dr. Jordan Vollrath
Cherry Health

ohamed Alarakhia

Dr. Mohamed Alarakhia
Intelligent Automation


Health care solutions
1 grant: $30,000

Each day, physicians, governments and policy-makers struggle to manage the limited resources available for our health care system.

This grant category supports initiatives aimed at enhancing the quality, safety and efficiency of health care and improving health outcomes for patients ― while reducing overall costs within the Canadian health care system. They achieve these goals by improving processes and/or outcomes related to:

  • the delivery of care;
  • the quality and safety of care; and/or
  • administrative efficiency.

Initiatives eligible for a grant in this category may include a product, service, process, model of care or social innovation.

Tingting Yan

Ms. Tingting Yan

Jennifer Hensel

Dr. Jennifer Hensel
Virtual Mental Health Ward


Access to care
2 grants: 1 x $100,000 and 1 x $50,000

Canadians experience challenges and barriers to accessing care — across the continuum of care — in all jurisdictions. This grant category supports initiatives that focus on innovative solutions that improve access to health care for all Canadians.

The factors affecting access to care are complex and vast, and some populations experience these issues more acutely than others. An initiative's competitiveness for a grant may be strengthened if it addresses the needs of one or more of the following cross-cutting populations:

Marginalized populationsMarginalized populations:
those who face increased challenges in obtaining equitable access to health care services
Rural and remote
                    populationsRural and remote populations:
those who have limited access to, or difficulty accessing, resources and services for all or part of the year

These initiatives should consider the patient experience as well as the planning and delivery of care for communities and individuals facing serious financial, logistical, technical and human resource challenges.

Initiatives eligible for a grant in this category may include a product, service, process, model of care or social innovation.

Alika Lafontaine

Dr. Alika Lafontaine
Safespace Networks

Gregory Schmidt

Dr. Gregory Schmidt
Bodo Health


Emerging physician innovators
2 grants: $10,000 for 1 medical student, $10,000 for 1 resident

Medical students and residents represent the future of medicine in Canada.

These grants will help to support the innovations of medical students and residents who are improving health care in Canada. Initiatives must be aligned to one of the four primary grant categories ― physician health and wellness, access to care, sustainable health care or health care solutions.

Applicants must apply to one of the four primary categories before they will be considered for an emerging physician innovator grant.

Brandon Spink

Mr. Brandon Spink
The Nexagon

Stuti Tanya

Ms. Stuti Tanya

Dr. Jovi Wong

Dr. Jovi Wong

Abhiram Cherukupalli

Dr. Abhiram Cherukupalli
Tractus Medical


About the program:

Joule's grant program supports physician-led innovation by providing flexible funding to CMA members making a difference in health care. In addition, all recipients receive professional support and mentoring through the program.

Each grant submission is assessed by the Joule Innovation Council using the following weighted criteria:

1. Health care benefits (30%) — improving health outcomes for patients, physicians and the overall health care system
2. Degree of disruption (25%) — transformation of current health care approaches
3. Scalability (25%) — potential for adoption and use within Canada and beyond
4. Collaboration (20%) — advancing patient-centred care through meaningful stakeholder engagement


$1 million in total funding
Over 5 years
For 39 physicians and medical learners