January 15, 2013 — The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) was awarded nearly $2M in research funding from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to study antibiotic delivery to children returning home after hospitalization for a severe bacterial infection.
The CHOP research is one of 25 projects totaling $40.7M selected from a pool of 500 applicants by PCORI’s Board of Governors following a competitive, multi-stage review process involving scientists, patients, caregivers and other stakeholders. Proposals were evaluated on the basis of scientific merit, engagement of patients and stakeholders, methodological rigor and fit within PCORI’s National Priorities for Research and Research Agenda.
Providing better information about treatment options to help families make informed decisions
When a child hospitalized with a serious bacterial infection is discharged, clinicians have two options:
- Transition from the intravenous antibiotics used in the hospital to a prolonged course of oral antibiotics at home
- Insert a central venous catheter (PICC) into a large vein in the chest and train the parents in care of the PICC and administration of intravenous antibiotics at home
“These two antibiotic treatment options have major implications for the overall experience of the child, families and caregivers, but there is a lack of real-world evidence on their benefits and drawbacks to help clinicians and patient families make an informed choice,” said Ron Keren, MD, MPH, who is leading the study and also directs the Center for Pediatric Clinical Effectiveness (CPCE) at CHOP. “If we find that the prolonged IV option is no better than the oral route, we think that most families would prefer for their child to take oral antibiotics.”
In addition to studying the risks and benefits to each treatment choice, the research team will also include parent-investigators, who will inform the research questions being asked and advise the team on how best to communicate the pros and cons of each treatment option to parents.
“The announcement of funding for studies like this one mark 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 healthcare 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.”
Prior PCORI award to improve clinical trial design to make outcomes meaningful to parents and children
The CHOP antibiotics study is the most recent of two PCORI-funded studies based at CHOP. Earlier in 2012, PCORI awarded $668K to Katherine Bevans, PhD, to research ways to develop a better clinical trial design so that outcomes are meaningful not only for the scientists, but also for parents and children participating in them- particularly to children with autism and their families. More information on Dr. Bevans’ study can be found at http://www.pcori.org/assets/Bevans-Katherine.pdf.
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) is an independent, nonprofit organization authorized by Congress in 2010. Its mission is to fund research that will provide patients, their caregivers and clinicians with the evidence-based information needed to make better-informed healthcare decisions. PCORI is committed to continuously seeking input from a broad range of stakeholders to guide its work. More information is available at http://www.pcori.org/.