Michael Evans


Affiliate Scientist, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute


Dr. Michael Evans, or “Dr. Mike,” is known worldwide for his work in innovative health messaging to the public. His media lab ( www.evanshealthlab.com ) fuses creatives, patients and experts to pioneer “peer to peer healthcare”. Dr. Evans and his team tell evidence-based stories and make them engaging enough that people share in their social networks. His YouTube Med School for the Public (www.youtube.com/docmikeevans) has over 13 million views and over 65,000 subscribers.

Dr. Evans is the house doctor on CBC’s Fresh Air, was a doctor at the Sochi Olympics, and started a Medical School for the Public at the University of Toronto.

His work has been profiled in a wide range of publications from JAMA, the BMJ, and the Lancet, to the Readers Digest and the hit Netflix series “Orange is the New Black”. Recent awards include being chosen as the top 10 innovators in health by the Canadian Medical Association, top 45 Canadians over 45, and the 2015 Canadian Cancer Research Alliance award for Distinguished Service to Cancer Research. In 2014 he was given the first worldwide endowed chair in Patient Engagement (and Childhood Nutrition) at the University of Toronto and awarded the 2015 McNeil Medal from the Royal Society of Canada in recognition of outstanding communication of science and medicine to the public.

Research Interests

Patient self-management, Patient education, health and media, technology, Design and Health, Chronic disease management, Health 2.0, patient education

Research Activities

Dr. Evans niche is patient engagement with new media. Previously his research was about improving primary care practice usually with an eye to chronic disease outcomes. Now he has shifted towards innovative practice in engaging the public or patients. He has partnered with people outside of medicine (e.g. film makers, designers, social media makers, patients) to make engaging evidence-based products. He also inserts this work into media such as radio and television.

Recent Publications

  1. Clements-Cortes, A, Ahonen, H, Evans, M, Freedman, M, Bartel, L. Short-Term Effects of Rhythmic Sensory Stimulation in Alzheimer's Disease: An Exploratory Pilot Study. J. Alzheimers Dis. 2016;52 (2):651-60. doi: 10.3233/JAD-160081. PubMed PMID:27031491 .
  2. Evans, M. Measuring statistical evidence using relative belief. Comput Struct Biotechnol J. 2016;14 :91-6. doi: 10.1016/j.csbj.2015.12.001. PubMed PMID:26925207 PubMed Central PMC4726790.
  3. Muthukumarana, S, Evans, M. Bayesian inference in two-arm trials using relative belief ratios. Pharm Stat. ;14 (6):471-8. doi: 10.1002/pst.1704. PubMed PMID:26276902 .
  4. Hart, TL, Blacker, S, Panjwani, A, Torbit, L, Evans, M. Development of multimedia informational tools for breast cancer patients with low levels of health literacy. Patient Educ Couns. 2015;98 (3):370-7. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2014.11.015. PubMed PMID:25481575 .
  5. Ghisi, GL, Grace, SL, Thomas, S, Evans, MF, Oh, P. Development and psychometric validation of the second version of the Coronary Artery Disease Education Questionnaire (CADE-Q II). Patient Educ Couns. 2015;98 (3):378-83. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2014.11.019. PubMed PMID:25481574 .
  6. de Melo Ghisi, GL, Grace, SL, Thomas, S, Evans, MF, Sawula, H, Oh, P et al.. Healthcare providers' awareness of the information needs of their cardiac rehabilitation patients throughout the program continuum. Patient Educ Couns. 2014;95 (1):143-50. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2013.12.020. PubMed PMID:24457175 .
  7. Manns, B, Barrett, B, Evans, M, Garg, A, Hemmelgarn, B, Kappel, J et al.. Establishing a national knowledge translation and generation network in kidney disease: the CAnadian KidNey KNowledge TraNslation and GEneration NeTwork. Can J Kidney Health Dis. 2014;1 :2. doi: 10.1186/2054-3581-1-2. PubMed PMID:25780597 PubMed Central PMC4346238.
  8. Omand, JA, Darling, PB, Parkin, PC, Birken, CS, Khovratovich, M, Thorpe, KE et al.. Non-Western immigrant children have lower 25-hydroxyvitamin D than children from Western families. Public Health Nutr. 2014;17 (7):1547-54. doi: 10.1017/S1368980013001328. PubMed PMID:23701731 .
  9. Sherwin, HN, McKeown, M, Evans, MF, Bhattacharyya, OK. The waiting room "wait": from annoyance to opportunity. Can Fam Physician. 2013;59 (5):479-81. . PubMed PMID:23673581 PubMed Central PMC3653648.
  10. Ghisi, GL, Grace, SL, Thomas, S, Evans, MF, Oh, P. Development and psychometric validation of a scale to assess information needs in cardiac rehabilitation: the INCR Tool. Patient Educ Couns. 2013;91 (3):337-43. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2013.01.007. PubMed PMID:23433734 .
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Affiliations & Other Activities

  • Associate Professor, Family Medicine and Public Health, University of Toronto
  • “House Doctor” for CBC Radio “Fresh Air”. (This program has just been syndicated nationally.)
  • Fellow at the Institute for Health Improvement in Cambridge/Boston. Teaching at Harvard School of Public Health
  • Chair, Patient Education, College of Family Physicians of Canada