Archives for May 2016

CIIS to Accept Applications for Pilot Grant Program on June 1st

By Tammy Lo May 23rd, 2016

Release Date: June 1, 2016

Application Deadline: July 15, 2016 at 11:59 PM EST

Scientific Merit Review: July-August 2016

Funding Decision Date: August 15, 2016

Earliest Start Date: September 1, 2016

Purpose of this RFA:  To solicit pilot grant funding for innovative implementation and improvement sciences research. Pilot grants are intended to generate preliminary data or establish novel methodology leading to subsequent funding.

Research Objectives: The Center for Implementation and Improvement Sciences (CIIS) seeks projects that will improve the processes and outcomes of health care delivery, particularly in safety net settings. Preference will be given to applicants that integrate implementation and improvement sciences; pilot funding is designed to foster multidisciplinary, collaborative, and innovative research. For more information about implementation and improvement science please visit the CIIS website:

Eligibility: Applicants primary academic affiliation must be at Boston University.

Funding Available: Direct costs up to $15,000 may be requested. The level of funding awarded to successful applicants will be determined after review of the budget request and budget justification.

Funds may be used for any purpose to support the proposed research, except faculty salary support. Typical expenses include, small equipment, patient recruitment costs, consultants, or support for pre/postdoctoral students, data analysts (qualitative or quantitative), or research assistants. Awards are not transferrable to any other institution.

Funding will begin on September 1, 2016. No funding can be awarded until all relevant final approvals such as IRB are obtained; thus, it is recommended that applicants begin the process of seeking approvals as early as possible. Projects should be completed within 18 months of the award date.

For more information, please visit here.


New Center to Focus on Improving Healthcare Delivery

By cgallen May 19th, 2016

Originally published at the Boston University School of Medicine.

The Department of Medicine has established the Center for Implementation and Improvement Sciences, which will serve as the methodological hub for the scientific evaluation of programs and activities focused on improving healthcare delivery, particularly to the underserved.

The Center will serve as a conduit for the free flow of ideas between clinicians, administrators and health services researchers both inside and outside of the BU community. It will help to facilitate improvement in care that is not only measured by internal program adherence, but also produces inferential and generalizable evaluations of healthcare delivery.

The specific objectives of the Center are to:

  • Guide, support and innovate the design of projects that evaluate the effectiveness of efforts to implement healthcare system change.
  • Identify factors and strategies that accelerate the adoption and promote sustainability of effective healthcare interventions in safety-net systems.
  • Educate faculty and trainees in Implementation and Improvement Sciences.

Want to learn more, participate, contribute? Contact:

Directlor, Implementation Sciences: Mari-Lynn Drainoni, PhD, or Director, Improvement Sciences: Allan J. Walkey, MD, MSc,


Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Orders Impact Hospital Rankings

By cgallen May 3rd, 2016

Original Post:

(Boston)– Healthcare consumers, policy and insurance organizations rely heavily on hospital ranking reports, but how accurate are they? Do differences in patient preferences for life-sustaining treatments that exist between different hospitals affect how hospitals are ranked?

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) examined how hospital differences in patient preferences for life-sustaining treatments (do not resuscitate, or DNR, orders) affected hospital rankings for pneumonia. They found that including patient decisions about life-sustaining treatments in the statistical models used to determine hospital mortality rankings resulted in substantial changes to hospital rankings that could affect hospital ratings, and reimbursements and financial penalties. This study appears in the JAMA Internal Medicine.

“Our findings suggest that current methods of comparing hospitals, which do not account for patient DNR status, penalize potentially high-quality hospitals admitting a larger proportion of patients who had chosen to forego resuscitation. Therefore, accounting for DNR status in programs that compare hospital mortality outcomes may substantially affect publicly reportable hospital rankings and hospital reimbursements,” explained corresponding author Allan Walkey, MD, MSc, assistant professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and a pulmonary, allergy, sleep & critical care physician at Boston Medical Center.

According to Walkey these findings have significant ramifications for methods used to assess patient outcomes and hospital quality. “Without accounting for patient preferences for life-sustaining treatments, hospitals admitting more patients who chose a ‘DNR’ status appeared to be poorer quality hospitals for patient mortality measures. However, our results suggested the opposite: hospitals with a larger number of patients who chose ‘DNR’ status tended to have greater patient satisfaction, high performance on measures of pneumonia care, and lower mortality after accounting for patient ‘DNR’ preferences. Our results also demonstrate the importance of collecting data regarding patient decisions for life-sustaining care and accounting for these decisions when comparing hospitals. Improving our ability to determine hospital ‘quality’ will facilitate efforts to improve care for all patients,” he added.


Source: Boston University Medical Center