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Joseph Cafazzo

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Name  Joseph Cafazzo

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Patient heal thyself dr joseph cafazzo at tedxtoronto

Joseph Antony Cafazzo is a Canadian biomedical engineer, educator, and researcher.


He is known for his work on the design of health technologies and how they facilitate patient self-care of complex chronic conditions. He has advised and conducted research for public sector policy makers and private sector medical technology companies on the design and safety of healthcare technology.

Joseph Cafazzo Patient Heal Thyself Dr Joseph Cafazzo at TEDxToronto YouTube

He has led the Centre for Global eHealth Innovation since 2007 and founded Healthcare Human Factors in 2004 at the Toronto General Hospital, part of University Health Network. He is an associate professor at the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, and the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Toronto.

He delivered Patient, Heal Thyself, a TEDxToronto talk in 2012 on empowering patients through improved design.

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Dr. Joseph Cafazzo Wolfond Chair in Digital Health

Healthcare Human Factors

Joseph Cafazzo Dr Joseph Cafazzo Director Centre for Global eHealth Innovation

In 2004, he founded Healthcare Human Factors at University Health Network, which applies human factors engineering methods to problems of healthcare delivery and patient safety. As executive director of Healthcare Human Factors, his work has expanded to the analysis of user needs, the application of iterative and user-centered design, and evaluation of systems, tools, and environments.

Centre for Global eHealth Innovation

Joseph Cafazzo Welcome to hSite

Cafazzo leads the Centre for Global eHealth Innovation in Toronto, founded by Alex Jadad in 2004. The Centre uses information and communication technologies to improve healthcare delivery, with a focus on recruiting multi-disciplinary individuals from backgrounds including the sciences, design, and technology.

In 2014, his team worked within the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Personal Health Devices Working Group to publish interoperability diabetes devices standards, defining communication protocols on how diabetes devices, such as insulin pumps, blood glucose meters, and continuous glucose monitors, communicate with one another and with other devices. By standardizing communication between devices, the protocols also accelerate the development of artificial pancreas systems.


Cafazzo has been routinely cited in the design and evaluation of health and medical technologies. In particular, his work on the barriers of patient adoption of dialysis technology, and his work on the design of mobile health application for the self-care of chronic illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, and heart failure.

In radiation therapy, Cafazzo promoted the design of radiation systems with a user-centered approach and demonstrated the importance of human factors design principles.

Cafazzo advocates for the use of ethnography to inform the design of health technologies. Ethnography enables the translation of qualitative findings into design principles for the purpose of obtaining functional specifications, bridging the disciplines of qualitative research with that of engineering and software development.


His work on diabetes self-care won the 2012 World Congress mHealth Innovation Conference's “People's Choice” award and the Stanford Medicine 2.0 award.

Cafazzo is also a recipient of the Career Scientist award by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care in recognition of his work in advancing patient self-care in the management of diabetes.


Logan AG, Irvine MJ, McIsaac WJ, Tisler A, Rossos PG, Easty A, Feig DS, Cafazzo JA. Effect of Home Blood Pressure Telemonitoring With Self-Care Support on Uncontrolled Systolic Hypertension in Diabetics. Hypertension. 2012 Jul;60(1):51-7. – Senior Author

Chan, AJ, Islam, MK, Rosewall, T, Jaffray, DA, Easty, AC, Cafazzo, JA. The use of human factors methods to identify and mitigate safety issues in radiation therapy. Radiotherapy and Oncology. 2010;97(3):596-600. – Senior Author

Cafazzo, JA, Leonard, K, Easty, AC, Rossos, PG, Chan, CT. Patient perceptions of remote monitoring for nocturnal home hemodialysis. Hemodialysis International. 2010;14(4):471-477.

Cafazzo, JA, Leonard, K, Easty, AC, Rossos, PG, Chan, CT. The user-centered approach in the development of a complex hospital-at-home intervention. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics. 2009;143:328-333.

Cafazzo, JA, Leonard, K, Easty, AC, Rossos, PG, Chan, CT. Patient-perceived barriers to the adoption of nocturnal home hemodialysis. Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. 2009;4(4):784-789. doi:CJN.05501008 [pii] 10.2215/CJN.05501008

Cafazzo, JA, Casselman, M, Hamming, N, Katzman, D, Palmert, M. Design of an mHealth App for Self-management of Adolescent Type I Diabetes – A Pilot Study. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 2012;14(3):e70. doi:10.2196/jmir.2058


Joseph Cafazzo Wikipedia