PCORI Launches “Engagement Awards” Program to Advance Patient-Centered Outcomes Research
WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 17, 2013) – The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) today launched a funding initiative designed to grow a national community of patients, clinicians, researchers, and other healthcare stakeholders who will advance patient-centered outcomes research.
The new PCORI Engagement Awards program will offer targeted funding to dozens of groups of patients, clinicians and other front-line caregivers, and others across the healthcare community who are interested in supporting the expansion of patient- centered outcomes research (PCOR) and implementation of its results. It will do so by supporting projects to enhance knowledge of PCOR and its benefits; training to foster partnerships between patients, other healthcare stakeholders, and scientists that can lead to research projects; and efforts to implement results of the research in clinical practice.
As the first step in this initiative, PCORI will invest up to $1.2 million for a training program to build research capacity and fund a series of Pipeline to Proposal Awards. The initial Pipeline to Proposal Awards of up to $15,000 each will help patients and other non-researchers interested in PCOR begin to form groups capable of partnering with clinicians, researchers, and other healthcare stakeholders.
The new program fulfills a key aspect of PCORI’s mission to facilitate active involvement of patients and other stakeholders in research efforts designed to answer unresolved medical and health questions faced by patients and those who care for them through studies comparing the effectiveness of different care options.
“Our new Engagement Awards are a key way for us to foster an understanding of best ways to use patient-centered outcomes research to improve healthcare practice, while supporting the passion and efforts of patients, family caregivers, advocacy organizations, clinicians, and many others who are eager to see more health research focused on answering the questions of paramount concern to them,” said Anne Beal, MD, MPH, PCORI’s Deputy Executive Director and Chief Officer for Engagement.
“The Pipeline to Proposal Awards are our first set of Engagement Awards, and this program will provide a channel for us to help key organizations that wish to facilitate the type of research we support but are not typically engaged in such efforts,” she said. “It will allow us and others to build a national patient-centered research community from the local level up, as well as to unite efforts of communities of interest at the national level.”
The Engagement Awards initiative will consist of three award categories:
- Knowledge Awards, which will fund activities such as background papers, landscape reviews, and development of mechanisms to share PCOR results.
- Training and Development Awards, which will cultivate a larger, better trained and research-ready PCOR community through activities such as ones that will link interested patients, stakeholders and researchers to build research partnerships. The Pipeline to Proposal Awards are the first in this category.
- Implementation Awards, which will support activities such as disseminating information about and encouraging adoption of PCORI funded research results as well as best practices for engaging patients and other stakeholders in PCOR.
To jump-start the initiative, PCORI issued a Request for Quotes (RFQ) to identify five organizations with the experience and skills to distribute Pipeline to Proposal Award funds and manage these awards. Serving as “Intermediate Funders,” each of these organizations will be responsible for helping PCORI to select up to 10 patient, stakeholder, or research groups to receive awards of up to $15,000 each. The awards will facilitate the early stages of community-building around a particular topic that can lead to a research question warranting a PCOR project. The deadline for interested parties to submit quotes is July 15.
Prospective Intermediate Funders include organizations skilled in overseeing funding awards in health advocacy, community development, community-based participatory research, or patient-centered outcomes research. Engaging such organizations to manage this process allows PCORI to tap their existing infrastructures as well as their knowledge of their communities.
The initial Pipeline to Proposals Awards will focus on helping groups build partnerships. PCORI will subsequently fund a second tier of such awards focused on developing capacity and infrastructure and strengthening partnerships between these types of groups and researchers interested in working with them. A third tier of these awards will support the development and refinement of the research question these partners would like to see explored through a PCOR study and to develop a research proposal that includes a well-developed plan for patient and stakeholder engagement.
PCORI will make future announcements about additional funding opportunities through the Engagement Awards as it grows the program. More information about the Engagement Awards is available on PCORI’s website.
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) is an independent, non-profit organization authorized by Congress in 2010. Its mission is to fund research that will provide patients, their caregivers and clinicians with the evidence-based information needed to make better-informed healthcare decisions. PCORI is committed to continuously seeking input from a broad range of stakeholders to guide its work.