PCORI introduces open innovation challenge

This month the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) launched its first challenge initiative, intended to tap into the expertise of the health-care and developer communities to help the institute advance “research done differently.” The challenge centers on the development a patient/research matching system that will connect potential partners interested in seeking funding for rigorous patient-centered outcomes research. Entries can take the form of a conceptual model, an adaptation of an existing matching protocol, a prototype for an entirely new web-based service or app, some combination of these approaches, or something else entirely, and will be judged based on how well they address a number of criteria including technical capacity, usability, scalability and sustainability across diverse populations, the maximization of “patient-centeredness,” and the particular challenges of serving “hard-to-reach” audiences.

In December, PCORI announced $40.7 million in funding over three years for 25 research projects, corresponding with the first funding cycle for its primary research funding announcements issued in May. Principle investigators who received funding included four psychologists, all of whom are four APA members: David Loring of Emory University, Tim Wysocki of the Nemours Children’s Clinic, David Sandberg of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor and Beverly Thorn of the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa. Several of the funded research topics relate to psychology and behavioral science, including improving psychological distress among critical illness survivors and their informal caregivers, the comparison of care options for young children treated with antipsychotic medicine, optimizing behavioral health homes for adults with serious mental illness, advancing dementia care for rural and Hispanic populations, and community engagement to address depression outcomes disparities. The institute is now accepting applications for the last of its three funding cycles, and letters of intent are due on Feb. 15.

For more information on this issue contact Christine Jamieson.