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Cara Tannenbaum elected to the Order of Canada

Congratulations to Cara Tannenbaum, Professor in the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Pharmacy at the Université de Montréal, and practicing geriatrician at the Institut universitaire de gériatrie de Montréal on her appointment as a Member of the Order of Canada on December 29, 2021. This prestigious recognition highlights her leadership in geriatric, women’s health and gender research, as well as her intersectional collaborations to improve the quality of life of aging people. Established in 1967, the Order of Canada recognizes outstanding achievement and service to the nation in all sectors of society.

Dr. Tannenbaum is approaching her 20th year of service at the Université de Montréal and holds the Michel Saucier Pharmaceutical Chair in Health and Aging in the Faculty of Pharmacy. Her accomplishments include the EMPOWER and D-PRESCRIBE clinical trials, which evaluated the impact of pharmacist-led, consumer-targeted interventions to reduce inappropriate drug prescribing among community-dwelling older adults. The educational tools from these trials have been translated into 20 languages and are being used worldwide to support health care providers and public health outreach programs in Canada and around the world. Building on this success, Dr. Tannenbaum founded the Canadian Deprescribing Network, which promotes safe drug use and deprescribing. Safe alternatives to drugs with potential harm are also promoted.

A strong advocate for women’s health and the integration of sex and gender into science and innovation, Cara Tannenbaum was appointed Scientific Director of the CIHR Institute of Gender and Health in 2015. She then implemented scientific policy changes and educational initiatives for sex- and gender-based analysis to ensure that all researchers consider both sex – biological factors – and gendered social factors in their research. In 2019, she is providing scientific advice to senior government officials as a departmental science advisor for Health Canada. She is there an advocate for science and research excellence across the department, establishing the CanCOVID platform at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic to support an interdisciplinary evidence-based government response.

The professor says she is humbled and honored to receive this appointment, which is a tribute to the dedicated team members she has worked with throughout her career.

“I am grateful for the support of Dr. Marie-Jeanne Kergoat, former head of the Department of Geriatrics, who from the beginning supported my career to improve the health of older women and the health of all aging Canadians. I also could not have done what I have done without the FRQS Clinician Scientist Award program and additional funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), which has allowed us to use our research findings to strengthen and accelerate action for the well-being of all Canadians,” said Dr. Tannenbaum.