The 7th annual Canadian Health Informatics Awards (CHIA) Gala, proudly co-hosted by ITAC Health, the Information Technology Association of Canada, and COACH: Canada's Health Informatics Association, was held on November 9, 2011, at The Fairmont Royal York hotel in Toronto. The CHIA Gala is one of Canada's leading e-Health industry events. The award winners, from a cross-section of Canadian healthcare, were honoured for their leadership, innovation and excellence in using technology for the betterment of patient care, education and the health system.

In closing remarks, Michael Green, Chair, ITAC Health, said, "The 2011 Gala has once again proved that health informatics is making both innovative and practical contributions to improving the quality of healthcare delivery for Canadians. This year's award winners and nominees show an admirable mix of ingenuity, dedication and enthusiasm to solutions that positively impact the efficiency of our healthcare system and place Canadian healthcare IT at the leading edge globally."

Lydia Lee, President and Board Chair, COACH, said in thanking the award winners, "The awards are a rare opportunity for peers to salute the remarkable progress and accomplishments taking place in the HI profession. This year, COACH is delighted to enhance recognition for healthcare providers through the new Clinician Leadership Award. At this time, I extend warm congratulations to all award winners and nominees, as well as the many people who took the time to prepare nominations."

The following awards and scholarships were presented at the gala:

Community-Based Physician Leader/Innovator

(Presented by the Canadian Medical Association)

Dr. Mike Wadden, Doctors Nova Scotia

Bill Pascale, Canadian Medical Association, Dr. Mike Wadden, and Lydia Lee, President and Board Chair of COACH

Clinician Leadership

Dr. Michael Harlos, Canadian Virtual Hospice, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, University of Manitoba

Lydia Lee, President and Board Chair of COACH and Dr. Michael Harlos

Corporate Citizenship

GoldCare

Michael Green, Chair of the ITAC Health Board of Directors and Paula Hucko, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, GoldCare and master of ceremonies CBC's Suhana Meharchand

Emerging Leader in Health Informatics

Alison MacDonald, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences

Lydia Lee, President and Board Chair of COACH and winner Alison MacDonald

Innovation in the Adoption of Health Informatics

North York General Hospital eCare Project

Sonia Pagliaroli, RN, BScN, CPHIMS-CA, Manager Clinical Informatics, North York General Hospital and Neil Gardner, President-elect COACH

Project Team – Implementation

Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences & Healthtech Consultants – Project EASIER

John Chen, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences and David Mosher, Vice Chair of the ITAC Health Board of Directors

Project Team – Patient Care Innovation

Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences & Healthtech Consultants – Project EASIER

Debra Churchill, Director of Professional Practice and Clinical Informatics, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences and David Mosher, Vice Chair of the ITAC Health Board of Directors

Steven Huesing Graduate Scholarship

Justin St. Maurice, University of Victoria

Lydia Lee, President and Board Chair of COACH and Justin St. Maurice

Leadership in the Field of Health Informatics

Dominic Covvey, University of Waterloo, National Institutes of Health Informatics, Author

Shirley Fenton accepting the award on behalf of Dominic Covvey, and Neil Gardner, President-elect

Project Team – Innovation & Care Delivery

North York General Hospital eCare Project Team & Cerner Corporation

Michael Green, the Chair of the ITAC Health Board of Directors and Dean Martin, Vice President Corporate Services, CFO, CIO. Executive Sponsor for eCare Project

Telehealth Technology Innovation

(Presented by TELUS Health Solutions)

Horizon Health Network Home Monitoring Program

Neil Gardner, President-elect COACH, winner Krisan Palmer, and Dave Wattling, Telus Health Solutions

Steven Huesing Undergraduate Scholarship

Thivaher Paromsothy, University of Waterloo

Lydia Lee, President and Board Chair of COACH and Thivaher Paromsothy