About Us

The Electronic Health Information Laboratory (EHIL) was formed in 2005 under CHEO’s Research Institute and headed by Dr. Khaled El Emam.

EHIL has a research program devoted to facilitating the sharing of electronic health information for secondary purposes while protecting the privacy of patients and the identity of providers. EHIL develops technology to facilitate health data sharing, including data synthesis methods, de-identification methods and secure computation methods to allow surveillance and analysis without compromising privacy. The different methods are suitable under different circumstances and constraints, from individual-level data release, to on-going surveillance, and to interactive remote analysis.

EHIL’s research spans theoretical work (which consists of developing mathematical models and metrics of re-identification risk), empirical work (evaluations of our models and metrics through simulations and controlled studies), applied work (evaluations on large data sets), and knowledge translation (building software tools, instruments, and education through presentations, webinars, and workshops).

EHIL is the only research group in Canada conducting both theoretical and applied research on the generation of synthetic health data, the de-identification of health information, and secure computation over health data.


This cumulative chart shows  funding obtained directly by the senior investigator since 1996. These include peer-reviewed funding and contracts.



  • All fund amounts have been converted into Canadian dollars.
  • The funds awarded in any year may be earmarked for expenditure over multiple years. For example, a grant may be awarded in a particular year but it is for a 3 year or a 5 year project. We only show the funds in the year of award.
  • The full amount for funding which had a person at the lab as principal investigator or co-principal investigator is counted. Funding where a member of the lab is a team member or investigator on a grant are partially counted – only the amount for the work done by the lab is considered rather than the full grant/contract amount.
  • Contracts can be with industry or with government departments.
  • We attempt to keep this up-to-date on a monthly basis. Amounts are entered as soon as an award is formally announced or a contract awarded.

Publication Lists

This chart shows all publications, including in peer-reviewed journals, conferences, and workshops as well as non-peer reviewed publications.


  • Some computer science and statistics workshops that have a formal program committee, a peer review, and publication of papers are counted as peer-reviewed articles.
  • These counts include publications by any members of the lab.
  • All publications that are counted here are included in the ‘Publications‘ section of our web site.

We attempt to keep this up-to-date on a monthly basis. Counts are entered when a formal acceptance notification is received. Sometimes a notification is received in one year but the paper is eventually published in a subsequent year, in which case that article will shift to the subsequent year when the publication date is known.


This chart shows outreach activities including invited lectures, keynotes, and presentations since 1995.



  • Outreach activities may be to the public, government departments, students, and industry or industry associations.
  • These counts include talks and presentations made by any member of the lab.
  • All outreach activities that are counted here are included in the ‘Talks’ section of our web site. Activities that are not private are not counted and not mentioned on the web site.
  • We attempt to keep this up-to-date on a monthly basis. Counts are entered after the actual talk/presentation has occurred.

Media Mentions

This chart shows media mentions of our work and our lab.



  • Media mentions include articles written about our work or where there are reported views and opinions from named lab members on contemporary policy issues or on specific incidents or events.
  • All media mentions that are counted here are included in the ‘Media’ section of our web site.
  • We attempt to keep this up-to-date on a monthly basis.

This metric reflects to some extent the relevance of our work to current issues of concern and relevance to Canadians, and the extent to which the expertise that we have developed can help inform policy decisions and national debates.


This chart shows the number of students and post-doctoral fellows that we have trained as well as secondments from industry and government.



  • The training of HQP means individuals who spend time on-site working with our lab members on specific projects related to our research agenda. They are not employees of the lab (e.g., faculty, study coordinators, statisticians, mathematicians, and programmers) – employees are a different category not counted here.
  • Training of HQP includes students and post-doctoral fellows that we supervise, co-supervise, or mentor. We also have visiting scientists and professors from other universities and secondments and leaves from government and industry.
  • The legend in the graphs means: (a) PhD/M. St. = PhD or Masters student, (b) POSTDOC = postdoctoral fellows, (c) Visit. FA = visiting faculty and professors, and (c) Undergrad. St. = undergraduate students.
  • Training is an important part of what we do. Our training activities go much beyond local (University of Ottawa) students and we wanted this dashboard to reflect that.
  • Note that the cumulative graph must be interpreted carefully as some individuals appear in multiple years; therefore the cumulative count is not a total of unique individuals but more a total of “person-years” of training opportunities. Even that is a bit of an overestimate because if some individuals are working with us for part of a year they are still counted for that year.
  • We attempt to keep this up-to-date on a quarterly basis.


This chart shows the total number of people who have attended EHIL webinars.



  • A webinar attendee is an individual who actually logged into the webinar (it is not a measure of registrations).
  • An individual may attend multiple webinars. In such a case that individual may be counted more than once.
  • For the complete list of webinars hosted by EHIL, click here.


This chart shows the number of patents applied for and awarded to members of EHIL.

patents charts2


  • Some of the patents were filed by members of the EHIL lab based on their work at the lab. The other patents were filed by the PI before starting EHIL in 2005.
  • A patent filing may result in an award many years later. We only show the filing dates because that would be the effective date of the patent.