In 1943, the Manitoba Medical Service was established by Manitoba physicians as a not-for-profit corporation to provide equitable access to health services for Manitobans of all income levels.

With the introduction of universal Medicare in 1969, it was unnecessary for the Manitoba Medical Service to continue to offer non-profit medical coverage. At dissolution, instead of the individual physicians dividing the residual subscription income, the remaining $200,000 was donated to the newly incorporated Manitoba Medical Service Foundation.

The Story of MMSF

The first meeting of the MMSF was held October 24, 1971. The founding directors were Leslie H. Butterworth, Dr. Norman Irwin Corne, Dr. John Carlton MacMaster, Hugh H. MaWhinney, Morris Neaman, Allen Rouse, Dr. Otto Arnold Schmidt, Bruce D. Sutherland and Dr. Laurence John Stephen.

By 1973, the Foundation had determined that its focus should be health research. This same year, United Health Services (Manitoba Blue Cross) contributed $145,067, which was the investment income for the year. Many diverse projects were initially funded, including the establishment of a peripheral vascular disease registry and financing the development of rural satellite centres of the Manitoba Cancer Research and Treatment Foundation.


To promote and fund scientific, educational and other activities to improve the health and well-being of Manitobans – with a focus on supporting new researchers.


To continue to be an important source of support for health research and education, in collaboration with other Manitoba organizations.



The values of the Manitoba Medical Service Foundation (MMSF) are rooted in the history of the Manitoba Medical Service (MMS), which was created in 1943 to provide medical coverage for all Manitobans at reasonable fee rates. When Medicare was established in Manitoba in 1971, the MMS was no longer required. To honour the legacy of the MMS, dedicated MMS members generously donated their investment by creating the Manitoba Medical Service Foundation. The mandate both then and now is to fund and promote health research and education in Manitoba.

Today, because of the ongoing and generous funding and support from Manitoba Blue Cross, the MMSF continues to provide funding for the advancement of scientific, educational and health-related research to improve the health and well-being of Manitobans.

The MMSF endeavors to achieve its mission and vision by:

  • Inviting health professionals and lay people to be volunteer members of the Board, fostering a sense of community and benefiting from a cross-section of expertise when selecting award recipients.
  • Involving applicants in the Foundation’s direct interview and grant review process, which creates an opportunity to provide mentorship and feedback.
  • Selecting the highest calibre of new researchers for promotion and grant support.
  • Developing collaborative partnerships with other organizations.
  • Providing funding to advance health-related research projects for the benefit of Manitobans and the world.
  • Ensuring our processes are effective and accountable to sustain our mission for future generations.

Board of Directors

Our Board consists of a diverse range of experts from health care and the local community.  
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The MMSF gratefully acknowledges the generosity and support of our organizational partners.
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Evaluation of MMSF

An evaluation of our grant process reveals that our programs are highly effective.
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