Peer review of PCORI-funded research helps make sure the report presents complete, balanced, and useful information about the research. It also confirms that the research has followed PCORI’s Methodology Standards. During peer review, experts who were not members of the research team read a draft report of the research. These experts may include a scientist focused on the research topic, a specialist in research methods, a patient or caregiver, and a healthcare professional. Reviewers do not have conflicts of interest with the study.
The peer reviewers point out where the draft report may need revision. For example, they may suggest ways to improve how the research team analyzed its results or reported its conclusions. Learn more about PCORI’s peer-review process here.
In response to peer review, the PI made changes including
- Providing a detailed description of stakeholder engagement in the development and implementation of the research study, but also noting that the description might look like less engagement than typically seen in prospective studies because of the retrospective design of the research (which means that the data exist before the study is designed, which provides fewer opportunities for stakeholder input and participation).
- Responding to reviewer requests to identify which of their three analyses were considered primary, since the results of the three analyses differed. The researchers explained that although the report describes the rationale for using instrumental variables in the analyses, the study stakeholders and advisory committee were unable to reach agreement about which instrumental variable approach to use. The researchers added additional discussion of the strengths and limitations of the two instrumental variables used in these analyses, to provide a clearer understanding of the findings.
- Confirming that the authors decided which subgroup analyses and multivariate risk models to use during the course of the study rather than pre-specifying them.
- Providing a rationale, in response to reviewers’ requests, for the use of simple imputation to model missing data rather than multiple imputation.
- Adding a paragraph and table of results to describe the adjusted comparative findings of Aim 3, in response to reviewers’ comments that the findings were not adequately reported in the Results section. The researchers also added comments about the Aim 3 results to the Limitations section.
Conflict of Interest Disclosures
View the COI disclosures form.