Knowledge Exchange
Research & Evaluation
Strategy Evaluation

Welcome to the OTRU Website

OTRU Awarded $1.5 Million for Research on E-Cigarettes, Water-pipe and Advancing Smoking Cessation

OTRU is very pleased to announce that we have been awarded two tobacco control grants for a total of $1.5 million from the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care, Health System Research Fund (HSRF).

RECIGWP: Research on E-cigarettes and Water-pipe This $750,000 study will address gaps in scientific knowledge about the marketing, use and effects of e-cigarettes, water-pipes and other emerging products. To inform policy and practice development and refinement, we will generate new knowledge through: knowledge synthesis; longitudinal panel studies; population survey data analysis; focus groups; analysis of traditional and social media; thematic analysis of products; packages and ads; and point of sale studies.

RE-ACT: Research on Advancing Cessation Treatment This $750,000 study addresses the urgent need to improve cessation outcomes by providing better understanding of the actual versus potential impact of cessation services in Ontario, the intersection of characteristics that influence long-term abstinence, the effects of long-term engagement and the effects of cessation for smokers of different characteristics on health status and health care utilization. To advance cessation treatment in Ontario we will generate new knowledge to inform cessation policies and practices through 1) a knowledge synthesis of existing global and Ontario specific knowledge and two innovative studies: 2) a Longitudinal Cohort Study of Cessation Among Ontario Smokers (Smokers’ Panel); 3) Health Care Utilization and Health Status Study-ICES-STOP-OTS Linkage.

For both studies we will engage actively in integrated Knowledge Translation and Exchange through Advisory Committees and several channels for two-way exchange of knowledge. Through the Administrative Health Research Question (AHRQ) channel, we will address research questions arising from the field. More information will follow about these two grants.

OTRU Updates Scientific Advisory Committee Report (SAC2)

OTRU establishes the Smoke-Free Ontario Scientific Advisory Group (SFOSAG) and updates the SAC Report. Using the same approach as the SAC2 Report, OTRU scientists are now routinely appraising new evidence as it is published and proposing changes where needed to the SAC2 Report. OTRU has launched the Smoke-Free Ontario Scientific Advisory Group (SFOSAG) to achieve scientific agreement on proposed changes. Twenty-one scientists from across Ontario participated in the first SFOSAG meeting on March 28th, 2017. Read more….

OTRU Launches the Ontario Tobacco Research Network (OTRN)

OTRU has established the Ontario Tobacco Research Network (OTRN) in order to provide a platform for Ontario tobacco control researchers to share research in progress, provide and receive input on ongoing studies, identify research gaps, facilitate collaboration and enable trainees to both learn and gain experiencing in presenting their work. Twenty-one scientists and three trainees from 11 organizations across Ontario participated in the first OTRN meeting on March 28th, 2017. Read more….

Commercial Tobacco Reduction in Indigenous Communities: 2017 Literature Update

Smoking prevalence among indigenous groups globally often exceed that of non-Indigenous and settler populations in the same regions or nations. In 2016, OTRU published a systematic review on the efficacy of interventions to reduce commercial tobacco in Indigenous communities. This report highlights 14 new strong and moderate quality research papers that have emerged since the original review. Read more….

Environmental Scan of Workplace Tobacco Control Activities in Ontario Public Health Units

TThis report provides the results of an environmental scan conducted by the Provincial Young Adult Prevention Advisory Group to identify tobacco-focused workplace activities (beyond the Smoke-Free Ontario Act) undertaken within the past 5 years or planned to be undertaken in the future by Public Health Units (PHUs) and Tobacco Control Area Networks (TCANs). Read more….

2016 Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy Monitoring Report Released

The 2016 Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy Monitoring Report presents evaluative information about the activities and results of the Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy and describes Strategy infrastructure and interventions, analyzes population-level changes, and explores the contributions of interventions.

Visit the 2016 Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy Monitoring Report page to download the full report, executive summary, separate chapters or the infographic posters. You can also watch and listen again to our recent webinar: Tobacco Control in Ontario: How Well are We Doing and Where Can We Improve?.

E-Cigarettes: To Vape or Not To Vape?

Should non-smokers vape? Is vaping less harmful than smoking? Can smokers quit by using e-cigarettes?

More information about OTRU’s research on e-cigarettes can be found on our e-cigarette research page. You many also be interested in our review in N&TR. Malas M, van der Tempel J, Schwartz R, Minichiello A, Lightfoot C, Noormohamed A, et al. (2016). Electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation: A systematic review. Nicotine & Tobacco Research, 18(10), 1926-1936.

Animation thanks to Dan DePeuter, Thunder Bay District Health Unit.

Core Activities

Our research activities produce evidence-based knowledge that contributes to the development of effective and efficient program and policy initiatives for tobacco control in Ontario and elsewhere.
Knowledge Exchange
Our integrated program of knowledge translation and exchange includes ongoing communications with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and other tobacco control stakeholders, and development and dissemination of a variety of knowledge translation and exchange resources.

Evaluation and Monitoring
Our work in evaluation examines the progress of the Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy and assesses the contributions of individual interventions to overall tobacco strategy goals.
Capacity Building
We provide a variety of training opportunities because we recognize that involving students and graduates early in their careers is an essential strategy in developing the next generation of researchers and practitioners in tobacco control.