Clinical Investigator Award Recipient, Dr. Abhimanyu Sud

By Humber River Hospital

Dr. Abhimanyu Sud is a Research Chair in Primary Care and Population Health Systems at Humber River Hospital and has been at the Hospital for a year, beginning in January of 2022. Alongside his role as Research Chair, Dr. Sud is a Family Physician and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto.

Most recently, Dr. Sud was the recipient of the Clinical Investigator Award from the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto for his ongoing work in primary care and family medicine-focused research.

What does receiving this award mean to you?

Receiving this award offers some recognition of the success I have had as a researcher over the past several years. Besides the traditional metrics such as funding and publications, I think it is, more importantly, a recognition of the value and alignment of this research with primary care, and the larger mission within the Department of Family and Community Medicine. The department’s strategic vision is centred on increasing the scope of research, improving population health, and addressing health equity, which all really resonate in the research that I do. It is nice to be recognized for that.

What does receiving this award mean for Humber?

It means a lot. The institution in which I will be doing my research, Humber, plays a vital role in winning the award. The department aims to ensure that funded investigators are operating in an optimal research environment and institutional structure where research can flourish. Receiving this award is symbolic of the commitment and dedication Humber has made to primary care and family medicine-based research and in recognizing the need for increased primary care scholarship, research, education, and advocacy. This is an exciting time for Humber, especially with the launch of the Family Medicine Teaching Unit happening in April. It is evident the Hospital values the importance of research as an important priority for future family physicians.

Our Hospital has reached a place where we are pushing the bounds to where we are generating knowledge, where the knowledge is being applied, where the knowledge is needed and in what ways. This award is a well-deserved recognition of Humber’s expansion in primary care and in community settings.

Are there any upcoming research plans you have for Humber?

We have just put together a very exciting proposal, which is highly representative of where Humber is situated both in the community and with respect to other family medicine and primary care sites across the city.

Based on some of my previous research investigating mind-body interventions for various large-scale health issues, we have prepared a new proposal focusing on deprescribing for benzodiazepines medications which are used to treat insomnia and anxiety. There is a lot of harm that may come from benzodiazepines overuse, particularly in older adults, and not a lot of evidence of these medications being effective as they are habit-forming and can have many side effects.

Therefore, we have put together a team, including pharmacists and family physicians from hospitals across the city, and created an application that looks at an innovative breathing-based meditation virtual intervention which has been shown to be effective for helping people who have anxiety and insomnia.

Getting the funding to complete this type of project could be really transformative. Although it is ultimately a pilot study, it would allow us to move forward to more definitive trials with sites from across the country and internationally, where we would be able to receive the scale we need to have a larger impact and make interventions more accessible.

It allows us to work together with colleagues from across the city. Speaking to these colleagues from other hospitals, all are very keen to collaborate with Humber. Humber has an appetite to be engaged in research, and in my role as Research Chair, I have the opportunity to use methodologies and my research expertise to support those who want to be involved.