Dr. Robert Spasoff MD MSc


Dr. Robert Spasoff MD MSc
Emeritus Professor

Personal E-mail: robertsylviaspasoff@gmail.com

Robert Spasoff


Dr. Robert Spasoff holds an MD from the University of Saskatchewan (1965) and an MSc in epidemiology from the University of Toronto (1971), and was a certified specialist in community medicine by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (1976-2002). He practised in the Saskatoon Community Clinic for two years and was on the faculty of Queen's University for eight years, before moving to the University of Ottawa, where he was chairman of the Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine from 1979 to 1989. He had extensive experience teaching undergraduate medical students at both universities, and was coordinator of the Individual and Population Health component of the University of Ottawa's undergraduate medical curriculum in the early 2000s. At various times he served on the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine Curriculum Committee and on the Medical Council of Canada's Examining Committee in Public Health and Preventive Medicine. 

He has been president of the Canadian Association of Teachers of Social and Preventive Medicine, chairman of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada's Specialty Committee in Community Medicine, and a member of the College's Health and Public Policy Committee. In 1986-7 he served as chairman of the Ontario Panel on Health Goals, and was subsequently appointed to the Ontario Premier's Council on Health Strategy. 

In the early 1990s, he was active in the Educating Future Physicians for Ontario (EFPO) project. He was a founder of Ontario's Teaching Health Units and the first director of the Community Health Research Unit, a System-Linked Research Unit sponsored jointly by the University of Ottawa and the Ottawa-Carleton Regional Health Department and funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health. One of the founders of the Health Intelligence Unit concept, he has been chair of the Governing Council of the Eastern Ontario HIP and co-chair of a Work Group appointed to pursue the recommendations of the provincial HIU evaluation. 

He is author of over 50 articles and book chapters. His research has been on applications of epidemiology to health policy, first with respect to health services planning and evaluation, and more recently concerning community health information. His textbook on Epidemiologic Methods for Health Policy was published by Oxford University Press in 1999. 

He retired from the University in 2003.  He spent a month teaching in each of Sudan (2004) and Ethiopia (2006), on behalf of the NGO Canadian Reach for Higher Education.

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