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Dr. John Jayachandran Awarded SSHRC Grant for Sickle Cell Disease Research

Posted on: Oct 6, 2021

We are pleased to announce that Dr. John Jayachandran has been awarded a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Partnership Engage Grant.

The grant will support the work of Dr. Jayachandran, Dr. Jennie Haw (Carlton University), and Dr. Jean Walrond (Sickle Cell Foundation of Alberta) on their research project, “Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) and the need for blood: Increasing donation by Black and racialized young adults.”

The research team will try to generate evidence to improve recruitment of and increase blood donation by Black and racialized young adults in Canada.

“The majority of SCD patients in Canada who require frequent transfusion require blood group combinations that are most common in those of African ancestry,” said Dr. Jayachandran.

“Currently, approximately 80% of blood donors in Canada are of White European ancestry, with only 1% identifying as Black. As such, it is a significant challenge for the current donor pool to meet the needs of ethnically diverse people living with SCD, which contributes to health inequities.” 

Specifically, the objectives of the project are to:

  • identify barriers and enablers to blood donation for Black and racialized young adults;
  • evaluate the effectiveness of online content produced by SCD associations and Canadian Blood Services; and
  • make recommendations to guide the creation of future online content, as well as strategies for content
    dissemination (e.g., social media, mobile apps).

Congratulations to Dr. Jayachandran and the research team!