We provide timely, scientifically rigorous evaluations of digital solutions tailored to the needs of the clinical environment.
A diagram of the service process

To be considered for an evaluation with the CDHE, clients must fill out an onboarding form, which details the technology they wish to be evaluated, the proposed clinical model, the proposed business model, and key evaluation goals.


Once the onboarding form is received, the CDHE will conduct the triage stage. This is a rapid process that includes:

  1. A review of the onboarding form
  2. Meeting with the client to review the evaluation options and narrow scope.
  3. Distillation of evaluation priorities into four key domains: technology, feasibility, scale & spread, and impact.
  4. Presentation of several evaluation options, or the recommendation not to pursue an evaluation at this stage (dependent on technology maturity, available funding, implementation status, etc.)

Needs Assessment

After the scope of the evaluation has been narrowed, the Needs Assessment phase begins. This includes:

  1. A preliminary grey and scientific literature search for comparable evaluations.
  2. Development of the first draft of the Work Plan, which articulates the project background, proposed methodologies for data collection and analysis, the deliverables, and the schedule of activities.
  3. Review of the Work Plan by the client.
  4. Meeting with the client to discuss changes to the Work Plan.

Once the Work Plan has been agreed upon and all relevant parties have signed-off, the evaluation can begin. Depending on factors (including but not limited to the evaluation priorities, technology maturity, site readiness, and academic value), the evaluation may fall under one or a combination of the following:

Market Entry Consulting

This process is intended for early-stage companies who are looking to develop an effective business model or use case for application in Ontario’s health care system. We engage experts across four key domains - clinical, engineering/design, policy/regulatory and business development - to ensure that companies improve their value proposition framing to all relevant stakeholders.

Service Model Validation

Service Model Validation involves understanding how a digital solution fits into a clinical model, what its potential impacts are, and who will pay for it. This process consists of two primary steps:

  1. Service Design: Before evaluating a tool in a clinical site, we will map out the potential service models for that solution based on the Tool, Team, Routine Framework. This will be informed by a scan of the literature related to the clinical problem and any existing solutions. In collaboration with the client, we will generate 2-3 value propositions based on the proposed service model, and seek feedback from relevant stakeholders and potential users to refine the service model and value propositions.
  2. In-situ testing: Once a service model has been mapped out, we will conduct a rapid pilot to test it in a clinical setting. Based on this pilot, we will articulate the final, validated service model and value propositions that could then be either spread/scaled, or evaluated in a larger trial.

Large Scale Evaluations

If the goal of an evaluation is to quantify the impact of a tool on health outcomes, a large scale evaluation will be required. This can manifest as either a randomized controlled trial (RCT), a pragmatic trial, or post-market surveillance. The CDHE will leverage the academic institutions affiliated with it and their collective expertise in evaluation design for digital health tools to carry out these projects. RCTs will only be pursued if the solution is at a sufficient stage to warrant this investigation.

The timeline of the evaluation will range from 6 months to 2 years, based on the outcomes being measured and the methodologies being deployed.