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Women and Children's Health Research Institute

WCHRI catalyzes and facilitates women and children’s health research through a variety of grant programs, research infrastructure/support and strategic partnerships within the university and the broader research community.

WCHRI goals are:
• To facilitate basic and applied health research activities focused on women and children’s health
• To encourage collaborative and translational research within the university and outside (community, industry, national/international institutions)
• To promote training in health research with a focus on women and children
• To ultimately translate this knowledge for the purpose of providing the best clinical health outcomes and clinical practice guidelines
• To impact locally, provincially, nationally as a catalyst for research and an advocate for women and children’s health
• To provide a mechanism for performance accountability
• To be a vehicle for communication of research outcomes and to provide a unified team approach for facilitating communication and establishing representation to the public, granting agencies and authorities

To build on our achievements in women and children’s research, we continue to develop strategic initiatives dedicated to enhancing the current investment in research and leveraging new provincial and national opportunities.
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  1. Soul Cysters Dot Net: Configuring the Feminine Body Through the Life Writing of Women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome [Download]

    Title: Soul Cysters Dot Net: Configuring the Feminine Body Through the Life Writing of Women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
    Creator: Megan Perram
    Description: Although Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) includes an array of varying symptoms that produce medical complications, this paper looks specifically at the condition of androgen excess (an increase of “male” hormones such as testosterone) and the ways it is written about in, a popular online health forum for women with PCOS. This resistance to the normative medical system that is cultivated within this online space is conditional on a collective agreement to work to combat or “cure” these symptoms that produce a deviation from stable femininity. In other words, unsettles the authority of the medical institution while also reproducing a prescribed understanding of what a woman’s body is and should look like. By normative medical system, I refer to the institutionalized healthcare services and facilities which are enabled and provided through the state. This project considers several questions, including: how does conceptualizing online health forums for women with PCOS, particularly, as life writing allow us to understand this writing as disrupting the authority of the normative medical system yet affirmative of stable notions of gender normalcy? In looking at the writing of women with PCOS through the lens of Judith Butler’s theoretical framework, how can we understand the performativity of this writing and the ways in which it constructs the writer’s body, gender identity, and sense of self? What are the social advantages of constructing, through writing, androgen excess as a disease rather than one variation of femininity? Does this stabilize an understanding of gender identity that we are reliant on? In order to address these questions, this paper examines posts on the blog by categorizing content in different themes, including what I perceive as transgressive processes which unsettle dominant discourses (writing that indicates community-building, self-expression, and alternative treatment methods) and posts that reproduce normative gender, including attempts to combat symptoms of androgen excess rather than embrace them as an alternative embodiment of femininity.
    Subjects: Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, Life Writing, Women's and Gender Studies, Gender and Social Justice
    Date Created: 2017
  2. Menopause-specific quality of life questionnaire (MENQOL) dissemination and use: a scoping review [Download]

    Title: Menopause-specific quality of life questionnaire (MENQOL) dissemination and use: a scoping review
    Creator: Lewis, JE
    Subjects: Questionnaires, Menopause, MENQOL
    Date Created: 2015/11/15
  3. WCHRI's 7th Annual Research Day (2014)

    Title: WCHRI's 7th Annual Research Day (2014)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
  4. WCHRI's 6th Annual Research Day (2013)

    Title: WCHRI's 6th Annual Research Day (2013)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Description: This was the Women & Children's Health Research Institute's 6th Annual Research Day, attended by over 400 researchers, trainees and partners.