UPLEARN, the University of Toronto’s Practice- and Community-Based LEarning And Research Network, is a “living laboratory” dedicated to clinical studies and health services research in family medicine that will enhance the primary care experience for both patients and providers, optimize the use of resources, and improve health for all.

UPLEARN is led by the Department of Family & Community Medicine, University of Toronto, and is part of the Ontario-wide Primary Care Ontario Practice-based Learning And Research Network (POPLAR), a “network of networks” from six university Departments of Family Medicine and the Alliance for Healthier Communities in Ontario.

Our mission: As the backbone of the health system, family doctors and other primary care providers are embedded in their communities. Leveraging this connection, UPLEARN’s mission is to contribute to a Learning Health System by engaging patients, care providers, administrators, and policymakers in prioritizing research questions, supporting DFCM faculty to engage in research, and translating research findings into tangible changes in policy and care.

Areas of focus:

  • Research excellence
  • Practice support and quality improvement
  • Health professional education
  • Policy evaluation and impact
  • Partnership with and service to our communities


Dr. Andrew Pinto | Research Program Director – Practice-Based Learning and Research Networks, Department of Family & Community Medicine, University of Toronto

Dr. Andrew Pinto is a Public Health and Preventive Medicine specialist and family physician at St. Michael’s Hospital of Unity Health Toronto and an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto. He is the Director of the University of Toronto Practice-Based Research Network (UPLEARN), the lead for clinical research of Ontario’s POPLAR network, and the founder of the Canadian Primary Care Trials Network

He is also the founder and director of the Upstream Lab, a research team focused on tackling social determinants of health, population health management, and using data science to enable Learning Health Systems. He holds the CIHR Applied Public Health Chair in Upstream Prevention.

Among other roles, he serves on the Institute Advisory Board of CIHR’s Institute for Population and Public Health, is an adjunct scientist at the Institute for Work and Health, and an honorary senior lecturer at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.

Primary Contact

Research Program Project Coordinator| Jamie Wang