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AAMC Comments on PCORI’s Research Priorities and Agenda

March 16, 2012—The AAMC March 14 submitted comments  to the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) on the first draft National Priorities for Research and Research Agenda. AAMC applauded the breadth of PCORI’s proposed five national priorities, which it said are consistent with the criteria outlined in the Affordable Care Act (ACA, P.L. 111-148 and P.L. 111-152) and focus on a wide range of interventions, including assessing prevention, diagnosis, and treatment options; improving healthcare systems; communication and dissemination; addressing disparities; and accelerating patient-centered and methodological research.

The letter supports the inclusion of racial and ethnic health disparities research, and health disparities generally, as a clinical effectiveness research (CER) priority area. The AAMC also voiced its strong support for the goal of truly engaging patients, and encouraged PCORI to develop an evidence base for how best to engage patients in a context-dependent manner at all phases of the research process.  AAMC said that a “critical element is to determine how the dissemination of information gained from research can be shared with patients in a culturally and time-sensitive manner.  The need for innovative methods of patient engagement is clear.”

Recognizing that PCORI’s research priorities and agenda will look different than the traditional investigator-initiated research portfolio of other traditional research funders, AAMC wrote, “Inherent in the success of the priorities is the recognition of a broad array of innovative qualitative and quantitative methodologies, including those that address behavioral changes of patients, providers, and organizations.” AAMC Chief Scientific Officer Ann Bonham, Ph.D., wrote, “Patients deserve the same scientific rigor applied to determining the best methods of implementing and spreading the results of new patient-centered outcomes research as is applied to designing and executing primary research.”

PCORI is expected to finalize its National Priorities for Research and Research Agenda April 15 and issue broad funding announcements May 15.


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Washington Highlights, a weekly electronic newsletter, features brief updates on the latest legislative and regulatory activities affecting medical schools and teaching hospitals.

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Jason Kleinman
Sr. Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806