Nuestra Salud, LLC (NS), serves the Hispanic and Spanish-speaking population of New Mexico. Lung health, particularly asthma care in children and smoking cessation, has been surfacing as an issue that our community would like to address. Family advocates from NS recently participated in a PCORI funding proposal with researchers from the University of New Mexico; it was submitted in September 2013. While the experience was useful, the proposal development process made us realize that we need help if we are truly going to work as partners with professional researchers and allow them to access our resources. As an advocate organization, our staff, families, and patients need training and support to build our capacity to participate more fully in developing comparative effectiveness research (CER) questions, participate in the design and evaluation of the research findings, and make sure our efforts are valued.
The PCORI Pipeline Awards are a natural vehicle for us to prepare to facilitate and support patient-focused CER within our population of families dealing with childhood asthma as well as with tobacco addiction. During Tier I, we engaged a network of Hispanic families with children with asthma, researchers, and stakeholders through collaborative monthly meetings; developed a shared governance vision; and communicated regularly to develop relationships based on trust and a mutual interest in improving the health of Hispanic children with asthma. We will continue to pursue these efforts during Tier II, which will culminate in the development of enhanced partnerships and CER questions.