Created a decade ago from the groundbreaking idea that patient-centered research leads to improved health, longer life, and enhanced quality of life, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) has been built on the values of inclusion, diversity, equity, and appreciating individual differences. Our very mission brings all stakeholders in health together to engage collectively to drive greater health and healthcare impact.
|Nakela L. Cook, MD, MPH
Executive Director, PCORI
Even so, like other health research funding organizations, PCORI is part of an ecosystem in which structural and behavioral racism have led to inherent biases in research and research processes as well as pervasive health inequities. These health inequities are evident in the disproportionate burden of illness and premature death among individuals and communities that have been historically underrepresented or excluded.
Unless we engage in an honest examination of all our processes and approaches and deliberately work to achieve diversity, equity, and inclusion in the projects we fund and activities we support in our pursuit of our mission, we risk perpetuating the harms of bias and discrimination.
As PCORI's Executive Director, I am committed to continuing to enhance our work against racism, discrimination, and bias.
- We will be intentional about identifying these issues, naming them, creating strategies and interventions to overcome them, and assessing progress with data-driven approaches.
- We will continuously pursue a workplace culture of inclusion where every employee's inherent dignity and worth are valued.
- Building on our past efforts, we will implement funding strategies that advance our goal of supporting a research community that reflects and represents the nation's diversity and builds patients' and communities' trust in research, science, and health care.
- We will strive to ensure that the studies we fund reflect questions of importance to the nation's diversity and that principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion are reflected in PCORI-funded projects.
- We will redouble our efforts to assess our effectiveness in working against racism, bias, and discrimination to enhance our work.
Together with PCORI leaders, our staff, and stakeholder partners, we will accelerate diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout all aspects of our work as an employer, a business, a research funder, and a partner and convener within the research community.
Through our experience in advancing patient-centered research, we know that partnering with communities disproportionately affected by health inequities strengthens the quality, usefulness, and relevance of research and its findings. Partnerships must be grounded in respect, guided by rules of engagement that are inclusive and share power, and acknowledge the true value of community assets.
No one organization can solve these problems alone, but working together, we will find ways to change the ecosystem for the better and ensure it truly reflects the diversity of America and ensures equitable inclusion of every voice.