Canadian Institutes of Health Research Act (S.C. 2000, c. 6)
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Act current to 2023-03-20 and last amended on 2019-06-17. Previous Versions
Canadian Institutes of Health Research Act
S.C. 2000, c. 6
Assented to 2000-04-13
An Act to establish the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, to repeal the Medical Research Council Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
WHEREAS Parliament recognizes
that Canadians value health as central to happiness and fulfilment, and aspire to be among the healthiest people in the world,
that Canada should be an internationally acknowledged leader in contributing to the global advancement of health research and that excellence in health research is fundamental to improving the health of Canadians and of the wider global community, and
that investment in health and the health care system is part of the Canadian vision of being a caring society;
WHEREAS Parliament recognizes that the provinces are responsible for the delivery of health care to Canadians and that the Government of Canada collaborates with provincial governments to support the health care system and health research;
WHEREAS Parliament believes that health research should
address the respective health issues of children, women and men and of the diverse populations of Canada,
be characterized by a transparent approach that facilitates accountability to Canadians, and
take into consideration ethical issues;
WHEREAS Parliament is cognizant of an historic opportunity to transform health research in Canada through the creation of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research as a flexible mechanism that will continually align health research funding with changes in the manner in which health problems and opportunities are identified, understood and addressed;
WHEREAS Parliament believes that health research institutes should be created to coordinate, focus and integrate health research based on
an understanding of the multi-factorial nature of health problems and opportunities,
the involvement and recognition of, and respect for, health researchers from all research disciplines, and the cooperation of a wide range of partners from all relevant sectors, the provinces and other countries,
the attraction of the best health researchers in Canada and the world and their development and retention in Canada,
the creation of new scientific knowledge based on research that meets the highest international standards of excellence, and
the application of that knowledge to the development and implementation of innovative policy and practice;
WHEREAS Parliament understands that this transformation in health research can build on the legacy of excellence in health research already established in Canada, including the decisive contributions of the Medical Research Council and the National Health Research and Development Program, while understanding that the institutions, technologies and environment for health research have become more varied and complex than in the past;
WHEREAS Parliament recognizes that this transformation in Canadian health research will also enhance economic development in Canada and promote growth and job creation in key sectors of the knowledge-based economy;
AND WHEREAS Parliament believes that the Canadian Institutes of Health Research will provide the leadership required for this transformation and the continuing success of health research in Canada;
NOW, THEREFORE, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:
Marginal note:Short title
1 This Act may be cited as the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Act.
Definition of Minister
2 In this Act, Minister means the member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada who is designated by the Governor in Council for the purposes of this Act.
Marginal note:Canadian Institutes of Health Research
3 (1) There is hereby established a corporation, to be known as the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, in this Act referred to as the “CIHR”.
Marginal note:Agent of Her Majesty
(2) The CIHR is an agent of Her Majesty in right of Canada.
Marginal note:Head office
(3) The head office of the CIHR shall be at the place in Canada that is designated by the Governor in Council.
4 The objective of the CIHR is to excel, according to internationally accepted standards of scientific excellence, in the creation of new knowledge and its translation into improved health for Canadians, more effective health services and products and a strengthened Canadian health care system, by
(a) exercising leadership within the Canadian research community and fostering collaboration with the provinces and with individuals and organizations in or outside Canada that have an interest in health or health research;
(b) creating a robust health research environment in Canada, based on internationally accepted standards of scientific excellence and a peer review process, that will attract, develop and keep excellent researchers and provide them with the opportunity to contribute to the improvement of people’s health in Canada and the world;
(c) forging an integrated health research agenda across disciplines, sectors and regions that reflects the emerging health needs of Canadians and the evolution of the health system and supports health policy decision-making;
(d) encouraging interdisciplinary, integrative health research through the creation of Health Research Institutes that
(i) together pertain to all aspects of health,
(ii) include bio-medical research, clinical research, research respecting health systems, health services, the health of populations, societal and cultural dimensions of health and environmental influences on health, and other research as required,
(iii) work in collaboration with the provinces to advance health research and to promote the dissemination and application of new research knowledge to improve health and health services, and
(iv) engage voluntary organizations, the private sector and others, in or outside Canada, with complementary research interests;
(e) promoting, assisting and undertaking research that meets the highest international scientific standards of excellence and ethics and that pertains to all aspects of health, including bio-medical research, clinical research and research respecting health systems, health services, the health of populations, societal and cultural dimensions of health and environmental influences on health;
(f) addressing emerging health opportunities, threats and challenges and accelerating the discovery of cures and treatments and improvements to health care, prevention and wellness strategies;
(g) fostering the discussion of ethical issues and the application of ethical principles to health research;
(h) promoting the dissemination of knowledge and the application of health research to improve the health of Canadians;
(i) encouraging innovation, facilitating the commercialization of health research in Canada and promoting economic development through health research in Canada;
(j) building the capacity of the Canadian health research community through the development of researchers and the provision of sustained support for scientific careers in health research;
(k) pursuing opportunities and providing support for the participation of Canadian scientists in international collaboration and partnerships in health research; and
(l) ensuring transparency and accountability to Canadians for the investment of the Government of Canada in health research.
Powers and Functions
Marginal note:Powers and functions
5 For the purpose of achieving its objective, the powers and functions of the CIHR are to
(a) promote, assist and undertake health research;
(b) foster the development and ongoing support of the scientific careers of women and men in health research;
(c) consult, collaborate and form partnerships with the provinces and with persons and organizations in or outside Canada that have an interest in issues pertaining to health or health research;
(d) monitor, analyze and evaluate issues, including ethical issues, pertaining to health or health research;
(e) advise the Minister in respect of any matter relating to health research or health policy;
(f) communicate with the public, governments, the Canadian and the international research communities, voluntary organizations and the private sector on issues pertaining to health or health research; and
(g) exercise any other power and perform any other function that is assigned to it by the Governor in Council to achieve its objective.
6 The President of the CIHR shall be appointed by the Governor in Council to hold office during pleasure for a term of not more than five years. The President is eligible for reappointment.
Marginal note:Governing Council
7 (1) The Governing Council of the CIHR shall consist of not more than 18 members, including the Chairperson appointed under subsection (3.1).
Marginal note:Appointment and tenure of members
(2) Subject to section 8, each initial member of the Governing Council shall be appointed by the Governor in Council to hold office for any term of not more than three years that will ensure, as far as possible, the expiry in any one year of the terms of office of not more than one third of the members. Subsequently appointed members shall be appointed by the Governor in Council for a three-year term.
Marginal note:Removal and reappointment
(3) Except for the Chairperson appointed under subsection (3.1), the members shall be appointed to hold office during pleasure and may be appointed to no more than two consecutive terms.
(3.1) Subject to subsection (3.2), the Governor in Council shall appoint a Chairperson to hold office during pleasure for a term of not more than five years. The Chairperson is eligible for reappointment.
Marginal note:Ineligibility for appointment
(3.2) The President is not eligible to be appointed as the Chairperson.
Marginal note:Appointment criteria
(4) The Governor in Council shall appoint as members of the Governing Council women and men who are able to contribute to the achievement of the objective of the CIHR in the overall interests of Canadians. The Governor in Council shall consider appointing women and men who reflect the highest standards of scientific excellence and women and men who reflect a range of relevant backgrounds and disciplines.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 7
- 2010, c. 12, s. 1693
- 2018, c. 12, s. 250
Marginal note:President and Deputy Minister of Health
8 The President and the Deputy Minister of Health are ex officio and non-voting members of the Governing Council.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 8
- 2018, c. 12, s. 251
9 (1) The Governing Council shall elect a Vice-Chairperson from among its members, other than the President and the Deputy Minister of Health.
Marginal note:Absence or incapacity
(2) In the event of the absence or incapacity of the Chairperson or if the office of the Chairperson is vacant, the Vice-Chairperson has and may exercise all the powers and perform all the duties and functions of the Chairperson.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 9
- 2018, c. 12, s. 251
Marginal note:Establishing committees
10 (1) The Governing Council
(a) may establish by by-law an executive committee and other committees of the Governing Council; and
(b) shall establish by by-law one or more standing committees to advise the Governing Council with respect to the full range of health research, and in particular for the purposes of paragraphs 4(d) and (e).
(2) A by-law establishing a committee, other than an executive committee, may provide for the committee’s membership to include persons who are not members of the Governing Council.
(3) The members of a committee who are not members of the Governing Council may be paid for their services the fees that are fixed by the Governor in Council.
11 The Governing Council may meet at the times and at the places in Canada that it considers necessary, but it shall meet at least twice a year.
Compensation and Benefits
12 The President
(a) shall be paid the remuneration that may be fixed by the Governor in Council;
(b) is deemed to be employed in the public service for the purposes of the Public Service Superannuation Act and is deemed to be employed in the federal public administration for the purposes of the Government Employees Compensation Act and the regulations made under section 9 of the Aeronautics Act; and
(c) is entitled to be reimbursed for reasonable travel and living expenses incurred by the President in the course of performing the President’s duties while absent from the President’s ordinary place of work.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 12
- 2003, c. 22, s. 138(E)
- 2018, c. 12, s. 252(F)
Marginal note:Members of the Council
13 Each appointed member of the Governing Council
(a) shall be paid the fees that may be fixed by the Governor in Council for attendance at meetings of the Governing Council or any of its committees or for the performance of other duties;
(b) is deemed to be employed in the federal public administration for the purposes of the Government Employees Compensation Act and the regulations made under section 9 of the Aeronautics Act; and
(c) is entitled to be reimbursed for reasonable travel and living expenses incurred by the member in the course of performing their duties while absent from their ordinary place of residence.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 13
- 2003, c. 22, s. 224(E)
Responsibilities of Governing Council
Marginal note:Management of the CIHR
14 The Governing Council is responsible for the management of the CIHR, including
(a) developing its strategic directions and goals;
(b) evaluating its overall performance, including with respect to achievement of its objective;
(c) approving its budget;
(d) establishing a peer review process for research proposals made to the CIHR;
(e) approving funding for research;
(f) approving other expenditures to carry out its objective;
(g) establishing policies; and
(h) dealing with any other matter that the Governing Council considers related to the affairs of the CIHR.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 14
- 2018, c. 12, s. 253
15 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the Governing Council may delegate its powers, duties and functions to its members or committees or to the President.
Marginal note:Limit on delegation
(2) The Governing Council shall not delegate its powers, duties and functions under any of paragraphs 14(a) and (c), sections 16 and 19 to 21 and subsections 22(3) and 32(1).
- 2000, c. 6, s. 15
- 2018, c. 12, s. 254
Marginal note:Advising Minister
16 The Governing Council shall advise the Minister in respect of any matter that the Minister refers to it for its consideration.
17 (1) The Governing Council may
(a) appoint, layoff or terminate the employment of the employees of the CIHR; and
(b) establish standards, procedures and processes governing staffing, including the appointment, lay-off or termination of employment otherwise than for cause, of employees.
Marginal note:Right of employer
(2) Subsections 11.1(1) and 12(2) of the Financial Administration Act do not apply with respect to the CIHR and the Governing Council may
(a) determine the organization of and classify the positions in the CIHR;
(b) set the terms and conditions of employment for employees, including termination of employment for cause, and assign duties to them; and
(c) provide for any other matters that the Governing Council considers necessary for effective human resources management in the CIHR.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 17
- 2003, c. 22, s. 139
Marginal note:Collective agreements
18 Notwithstanding section 112 of the Federal Public Sector Labour Relations Act, the Governing Council may, in accordance with the negotiating mandate approved by the President of the Treasury Board, enter into a collective agreement with the bargaining agent for a bargaining unit composed of employees of the CIHR that is applicable to employees of that bargaining unit.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 18
- 2003, c. 22, s. 140
- 2017, c. 9, s. 55
19 The Governing Council may, with the approval of the Governor in Council, make by-laws for the regulation of its proceedings and generally for the conduct of its activities.
Health Research Institutes
20 (1) The Governing Council shall
(a) establish, maintain and terminate Health Research Institutes, and determine the mandate of each one;
(b) create an Advisory Board for each Health Research Institute and appoint the members of the Advisory Boards; and
(c) appoint a Scientific Director for each Health Research Institute.
(2) Each Health Research Institute shall support individuals, groups and communities of researchers for the purpose of implementing, within its mandate, the objective of the CIHR.
Marginal note:Role and functioning
(3) The Governing Council shall develop policies respecting the role and functioning of Health Research Institutes and their Advisory Boards and Scientific Directors.
Marginal note:Appointments to Advisory Boards
(4) The Governing Council shall appoint to the Advisory Boards women and men who are able to contribute to the achievement of the objective of the CIHR in the overall interests of Canadians. The Governing Council shall consider appointing women and men who reflect the highest standards of scientific excellence and a range of relevant backgrounds and disciplines, such as researchers in the fields of bio-medical research, clinical research and research respecting health systems, health services, the health of populations, societal and cultural dimensions of health and environmental influences on health.
- 2000, c. 6, s. 20
- 2018, c. 12, s. 255
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