About Us

Nearly one-fifth of American children have obesity, increasing their risk of many associated health problems. These include conditions historically considered adult problems: heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and liver disease. Obesity affects many aspects of an individual's physical and mental health; children with obesity, defined as being at or above the 95th percentile in body mass index of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s growth charts, often face depression, low self-esteem, and bullying.


In observance of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, we highlight some of the work PCORI has funded to better understand, prevent, and treat pediatric obesity (see box). One of our largest funded efforts is PEDSnet, a network with access to data from 5.1 million children—and growing. PEDSnet, which aims to find ways to provide the best medical care and best outcomes for children in all areas of health, has obesity as a major focus.

“Obesity is tied to so many other health conditions, and we’re seeing these disorders at younger and younger ages,” says Ihuoma Eneli, MD, a PEDSnet investigator and Director of the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. PEDSnet, which is headquartered at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, is one of the health system–based Clinical Data Research Networks that are part of PCORnet, the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network. This PCORI initiative is harnessing the power of data and unique partnerships to conduct important health research faster, more efficiently, and at lower cost than was previously possible.

“The quality of life of kids with obesity is similar to that of kids with cancer. This finding highlights the seriousness of the problem,” Eneli says. “PEDSnet should give us an idea of what works and what doesn’t.”

What's Happening at PCORI?

The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute sends weekly emails about opportunities to apply for funding, newly funded research studies and engagement projects, results of our funded research, webinars, and other new information posted on our site.

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