University of Regina puts history of healthcare online

News Release Release Date: February 4, 2014 10:00 a.m.

Saskatchewan has long been a pioneer in health care: it pioneered universal medical care and it was the first province to offer free tuberculosis vaccine.

Now these and other milestones can be seen on a new Historical Health Timeline, an interactive, online resource that offers key events between 1905 and 1985 that have benefited the health of Saskatchewan residents. This new innovative tool for studying the history of health in Saskatchewan was created by the Saskatchewan Population Health Evaluation and Research Unit (SPHERU), a bi-university health research unit based at the Universities of Regina and Saskatchewan that studies social factors contributing to the well-being of various groups within the population.

“The timeline is practical to use and serves as an engaging and exciting method of transferring knowledge and research to others,” says Tara Todd, who was instrumental in developing the timeline. “The easily scrollable events provide a rich history of formal legislation, technological interventions, medical breakthroughs, widespread epidemics, changing health care practices and policies, and a general overview of how social determinants have historically played a role in affecting health status in Saskatchewan.”

The creation of the timeline is a collaboration among several SPHERU members including Dr. James Daschuk, Dr. Gloria DeSantis, Dr. Tom McIntosh, and Tara Todd, SPHERU Project Coordinator at the University of Regina, and Dr. Paul Hackett at the University of Saskatchewan.

“Our hope is that other scholars will see an opportunity to add to the content by including their work on the timeline and that, ultimately, it becomes a ‘living’ teaching and research resource for people in the province,” says Dr. McIntosh, SPHERU Associate Director and Head of the Department of Political Science at the University of Regina.

The timeline project was developed as part of a larger project looking at the history of health in the province, led by Dr. Bonnie Jeffery at the University of Regina and Dr. Nazeem Muhajarine at the University of Saskatchewan, with funding from the Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation.

The timeline is available at


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