The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute is trying to live up to the first two words in its name.
A team of researchers from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor has been tapped by PCORI to scale up their prototype of a Web-based crowd-sourcing platform called WellSpringboard, which is designed to enable patients to propose ideas and pledge funds for clinical research.
Washington-based PCORI, an independent not-for-profit group established by the healthcare reform law, recently awarded the Michigan researchers $40,000, the top prize from its PCORI Challenge, a competition seeking novel approaches to connecting researchers with interested patients.
“Patients, caregivers, clinicians and other stakeholders must be actively involved in the development and conduct of health research to fill the knowledge gaps that hinder health decisionmaking,” said Dr. Anne Beal, PCORI's deputy executive director and chief officer for engagement, in a news release.
Dr. Matthew Davis, a primary-care physician and health services researcher at the University of Michigan, and the lead investigator of the team that developed the platform, said the approach shifts much of the focus onto patients—a change he says he hopes will boost dismally low rates of public participation in research.