St. Michael’s Hospital provides compassionate care to all who walk through its doors. The Hospital also provides outstanding medical education to future health care professionals in more than 23 academic disciplines. Critical care and trauma, heart disease, neurosurgery, diabetes, cancer care, and care of the homeless are among the Hospital’s recognized areas of expertise.

Through the Keenan Research Centre and the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, research at St. Michael’s Hospital is recognized and put into practice around the world. Founded in 1892, the Hospital is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto. 

In 2008-2009, St. Michael’s Hospital had:

• 5,264 staff
• 643 physicians and midwives
• 1,660 nurses
• 943 medical residents and clinical fellows
• 230 medical students
• 771 health discipline students
• 429 nurses who are students and/or in continuing education
• 510 volunteers
• 527 inpatient beds (including bassinets) as follows: 407 adult acute care beds; 68 adult intensive care beds and 52 neonatal beds

The Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute
St. Michael’s Hospital is building the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, the only institute of its kind in North America. The Knowledge Institute, which is scheduled to open in 2011, will marry research and education in a hospital setting in order to best integrate the tripartite priorities of excellence in patient care, research and education. As a 335,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility, the Knowledge Institute will be comprised of two nine-storey centres: the Keenan Research Centre and the Li Ka Shing International Healthcare Education Centre.

The Keenan Research Centre
The Research Centre’s goal is to improve human health and patient outcomes by generating new medical knowledge. We will attract and motivate creative individuals who work together in a stimulating and collaborative, intellectual environment. St. Michael’s research strengths and priorities lie in several well-established programs including Critical Care, Inner City Health, Global Health and Knowledge Translation.

Critical care research is comprised of a matrix which includes three cross-cutting themes in regenerative medicine, inflammation/injury and molecular and genetic determinants of disease. These themes span clinical specializations in vascular biology, trauma/respiratory failure, diabetes/kidney and blood research, which together form a comprehensive program in basic and clinical research.

The Centre for Research on Inner City Health is the first centre of its kind in Canada whose mission is to improve the health of urban populations through a program of clinical and policy-relevant research. Particular emphasis is placed on the needs of socially disadvantaged and economically deprived groups, including the homeless and under-housed, those suffering from mental illness and patients diagnosed with diseases including HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis.

The Centre for Global Health Research is focused on large scale epidemiology (i.e. the cause, distribution and control of disease in populations). At present, the largest cohort study in the world is being conducted at the Centre, encompassing a population of 14 million people in India. Global health researchers are also focused on broader issues including international bioethics, infectious diseases in immigrant populations, HIV/AIDS intervention and prevention in Africa and health systems reform in China.

Research expertise expanded in the fall of 2005 to include Knowledge Translation, as a result of the affiliation of the Knowledge Translation Program at the University of Toronto with St. Michael’s. St. Michael’s is forging a unique niche in Knowledge Translation through innovative research and through close collaboration of research and education, by integrating an evaluative component to education and training. Knowledge translation is the field of research and practice that develops and uses ways to increase the likelihood that patients and clinicians incorporate proven knowledge into clinical practice.

Over the last eight years, overall research activity has experienced a significant growth trajectory with over 150% growth in external funding. One hundred and eighty researchers currently work out of seven research sites and lead approximately 400 research staff.

The Keenan Research Centre will consolidate the Hospital’s growing research community into one location. In doing so, the Research Centre will act as a catalyst for the development of synergistic relationships, and promote new methods to address complex health issues from multiple perspectives. As part of the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, the Keenan Research Centre will enable the marrying of research and education in one setting, providing fertile research and training ground to bring new research to patients at St. Michael’s Hospital and across the world.