|This project's final research report is expected to be available by August 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. The comments and responses included the following:
- Reviewers asked for greater clarity on eligibility criteria for the study, especially related to what researchers had included in their definition of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease -related conditions. Reviewers also asked why researchers did not measure airflow obstruction when establishing a diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The researchers responded that in order to make the study more feasible, they based participant inclusion on medical records, automated reporting, and physician confirmation, rather than direct diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The researchers included participants who either had been diagnosed with acute chronic obstructive pulmonary disease when hospitalized or had their chronic obstructive pulmonary disease contribute to their hospitalization. In addition, many hospitalized patients do not have their airflow obstruction measured to establish a diagnosis.
- Reviewers asked for more discussion about the lack of significant effect on many secondary outcomes. The researchers responded that the study was not well powered to detect differences in secondary measures and added detail to their discussion about these results.
- Reviewers asked why approximately 35 percent of eligible participants declined to participate and whether there was additional information about those who declined. The researchers said reasons included lack of time and interest, and involvement in other studies. However, they said the demographic characteristics of the group that participated were comparable to those of all the eligible patients. The researchers added details about these groups to the report.
- Reviewers suggested that a longer follow-up, beyond three months and six months, might have been helpful. The researchers agreed and said they would like to conduct longer follow-up on the study participants, noting that the benefits of some intervention strategies take additional time to emerge.
Conflict of Interest Disclosures
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Putting Patients in the Driver’s Seat
This study finds a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease intervention that empowers patients can reduce hospital readmission rates.
COPD Research That Includes Caregivers (right)
Principal Investigator Hanan Aboumatar speaks about the benefits of including caregivers in her research study nicknamed BREATHE, which focused on patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.