Dr. David Blackburn is associate professor of Pharmacy and research chair in Patient Adherence to Drug Therapy at the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan. He is also the Director of the Saskatchewan Drug Utilization and Outcomes Research Team (SDUORT).  SDUORT is funded by the Ministry of Health in Saskatchewan to examine provincial drug use issues that are impacted by government policies.  After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy in 1995 from the UofS, he worked briefly as a community pharmacist before completing a hospital residency program in Saskatoon and then moved to Toronto to complete a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Toronto in 2001.


His research program is focused on patient adherence, drug utilization, health outcomes, and chronic disease management in primary care settings.  He has extensive experience in the use of Saskatchewan’s health-administrative databases for studying the use of prescriptions and their influence on health outcomes. With funding support from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Dr. Blackburn’s research group is currently looking to understand the root causes of poor adherence for diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol. A more comprehensive understanding of the major determinants of non-adherence has the potential to reduce health care costs and keep people healthy and out of hospitals. Dr. Blackburn continues to teach undergraduate pharmacy students and trains Master’s and PhD level candidates at the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition. He also practices as a patient-teaching pharmacist at the Saskatoon Cardiac Rehabilitation Program.

Selected Publications

  • Dicuss, M., Tran, D., Olson, C., Lyons, B., Blackburn, D.F.  Adherence to imatinib among patients attending Saskatchewan Cancer Agency Pharmacies (2014) Journal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice Jun 5. [Epub ahead of print]
  • Blackburn, D.F., Tran, D., Crawley, A., Lynds, S., Champagne, A., Bresee, L., Rémillard, A.J. Do prior authorization policies discourage first-line antipsychotic use in patients newly discharged from a hospitalization for schizophrenia in Saskatchewan? (2014) Journal of Population Therapeutics and Clinical Pharmacology, 21 (1), pp. e31-e37.
  • Alsabbagh, W.M., Dagenais, J., Yan, L., Lu, X., Lix, L.M., Shevchuk, Y., Teare, G.F., Blackburn, D.F. Use and misuse of ezetimibe: Analysis of use and cost in Saskatchewan, a Canadian jurisdiction with broad access (2014) Canadian Journal of Cardiology, 30 (2), pp. 237-243.
  • Alsabbagh, M.H.D.W., Lemstra, M., Eurich, D., Lix, L.M., Wilson, T.W., Watson, E., Blackburn, D.F. Socioeconomic status and nonadherence to antihypertensive drugs: A systematic review and meta-analysis (2014) Value in Health, 17 (2), pp. 288-296.
  • Yakiwchuk, E.M., Jorgenson, D., Mansell, K., Laubscher, T., LeBras, M., Blackburn, D.F. Collaborative cardiovascular risk reduction in primary care ii (CCARP II): Implementation of a systematic case-finding process for patients with uncontrolled risk factors (2013) Canadian Pharmacists Journal, 146 (5), pp. 284-292.
  • Evans, C.D., Eurich, D.T., Lu, X., Remillard, A.J., Shevchuk, Y.M., Blackburn, D. The association between market availability and adherence to antihypertensive medications: An observational study (2013) American Journal of Hypertension, 26 (2), pp. 180-190.
  • Blackburn, D.F., Swidrovich, J., Lemstra, M. Non-adherence in type 2 diabetes: Practical considerations for interpreting the literature (2013) Patient Preference and Adherence, 7, pp. 183-189.