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PCORI moves to im­ple­ment com­par­a­tive ef­fec­tive­ness re­search, fund­ing

Modern Healthcare - - FRONT PAGE - Mau­reen McKin­ney

PCORI is now ready to get down to busi­ness

The not-for-profit or­ga­ni­za­tion tasked by the health­care re­form law with pro­mot­ing com­par­a­tive ef­fec­tive­ness re­search has spent the 16 months since its in­cep­tion in the plan­ning stages, build­ing in­fra­struc­ture and seek­ing feed­back from clin­i­cians and pa­tients. But the time has come to get the funds awarded and the re­search started, said Dr. Joseph Selby, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Pa­tient-cen­tered Out­comes Re­search In­sti­tute.

“The leg­is­la­tion does not spec­ify a date when fund­ing has to start,” said Selby, re­fer­ring to the Pa­tient Pro­tec­tion and Af­ford­able Care Act, “but the board and staff of PCORI feel strongly that we need to get fund­ing and re­search un­der way. Time is of the essence.”

On Jan. 23, PCORI re­leased a draft copy of its five-item pri­or­ity list and re­search agenda, which the or­ga­ni­za­tion says it will use to guide its fund­ing de­ci­sions.

PCORI re­ceived a flood of more than 850 ap­pli­ca­tions for its Pi­lot Projects Grants Pro- gram by the Dec. 1 dead­line. The awardees— PCORI says there will be ap­prox­i­mately 40— will be an­nounced in May and re­search will be­gin right away, Selby said.

The large num­ber of in­ter­ested ap­pli­cants is to be ex­pected, said Dr. Michael Stein­man, as­so­ci­ate pro­fes­sor in the di­vi­sion of ge­ri­atrics at the UCSF School of Medicine, and di­rec­tor of com­par­a­tive ef­fec­tive­ness re­search at the univer­sity’s Clin­i­cal and Trans­la­tional Sci­ence In­sti­tute.

“It’s not sur­pris­ing be­cause this is a ma­jor, emerg­ing area of re­search in an era of shrink­ing bud­gets from the Na­tional In­sti­tutes of Health and other tra­di­tional sources of fund­ing,” said Stein­man, adding that sev­eral UCSF re­searchers had ap­plied for pi­lot grants from PCORI.

PCORI’S de­vel­op­ment phase has taken a while, but that makes sense, given the or­ga­niza-

“If we nar­rowed the agenda and said that we only wanted to study these con­di­tions or these in­ter­ven­tions, we’d cut our­selves off from large sec­tions of the provider and pa­tient com­mu­ni­ties.” — Dr. Joseph Selby, Pa­tient-cen­tered

Out­comes Re­search In­sti­tute

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