PCORI research award to explore integration of patient strengths in treatment

Published on December 28, 2012 at 8:09 AM · No Comments

Project part of PCORI's effort to help patients make better-informed health decisions

Case Western Reserve University has been approved for a research award from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to study ways that applying patients' strengths can help enhance their health care and well-being. The project is part of a portfolio of patient-centered comparative clinical effectiveness research that addresses PCORI's National Priorities for Research and Research Agenda.

Kurt C. Stange, MD, PhD, Professor of Family Medicine & Community Health at the School of Medicine will lead the research project, which departs from the typical care model focusing on patient challenges or weaknesses. Instead, researchers will explore how patient strengths can be integrated into assessment and treatment to improve patient outcomes. Strengths could include a patient's resilience or mindfulness, as well as relationships with family and friends and resources available within the community.

Case Western Reserve researchers will work with patients and clinicians in the Safety Net Providers' Strategic Alliance-a Cleveland-area consortium (known formally as a Practice-Based Research Network) involving 17 community health centers and two free clinics. The project team also includes collaborators at the University of Oslo in Norway and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who will help develop an interactive online tool to assess patient strengths. The researchers will create computerized simulation models to compare outcomes from employing patient-identified strengths to deficit and symptom-focused care.

"Today marks a major milestone in our work as we build a portfolio of comparative clinical effectiveness research that will provide patients and those who care for them better information about the health care decisions they face," said PCORI Executive Director Joe Selby, MD, MPH. "These research projects reflect PCORI's patient-centered research agenda, emphasizing the inclusion of patients and caregivers at all stages of the research."

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