|This project's final research report is expected to be available by June 2019.|
Peer review of PCORI-funded research helps make sure the report presents complete, balanced, and useful information about the research. It also assesses how the project addressed PCORI’s Methodology Standards. During peer review, experts read a draft report of the research and provide comments about the report. These experts may include a scientist focused on the research topic, a specialist in research methods, a patient or caregiver, and a healthcare professional. These reviewers cannot 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 descriptions of the conduct of the study or to clarify the connection between results and conclusions. Sometimes, awardees revise their draft reports twice or more to address all of the reviewers’ comments.
Peer reviewers commented, and the researchers made changes or provided responses. Those comments and responses included the following:
- Reviewers expressed concern about the substantial number of patients in the study source population who did not participate in the research and therefore, whether the patients who agreed to participate were truly representative of the source population. The researchers explained in the report that they compared characteristics of patients included in the study to those of the source population. The comparisons indicated that patients included in the study were more likely to be under 60 years old and to come from certain primary care practices than those in the source population.
- Reviewers noted that the report did not sufficiently discuss the low rates of stool blood test rescreening, despite a much higher rate of initial screenings in the navigator intervention group compared to the standard practice group. The researchers hypothesized in the report’s discussion that the low rate of rescreening in the intervention group was due to the lack of additional intervention contacts, which reduced motivation in this group. The investigators hypothesized further that comparison patients, however, had to be more self-motivated from the beginning to complete the stool blood test initially and therefore, probably had a higher rate of motivation to follow the guidelines for annual screening.
Conflict of Interest Disclosures
View the COI disclosure form.
Increasing Colon Cancer Screening Rates in the Hispanic Population (right)
Hear more about how this study compared the effectiveness of two communication approaches by the Lehigh Valley Health Network in Pennsylvania to increase the colon cancer screening rate among Hispanics.
Decision Support and Navigation
Project principal investigator Ronald E. Myers, PhD says that decision support and navigation—an approach studied through his study—has potential to change practice if a centralized process is adopted and implemented by health systems.