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October 25, 2013

Pacific Northwest Evidence-based Practice Center regularly conducts reviews of health care topics for Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

The Pacific Northwest Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC), led by faculty in the Department of Medical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology, has received 10 task orders from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality since the beginning of 2013.

"These awards are an exciting opportunity as the EPC moves forward in this fourth cycle and underscore the strengths of the strong partnership between OHSU, the University of Washington's CHASE Alliance, and Spectrum Research, Inc.," said Roger Chou, M.D., associate professor of medical informatics and clinical epidemiology and EPC director.

Graham-Chou-McDonagh-EPC-storyFive of the 10 projects are led by Dr. Chou. The systematic review on imaging for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) will look at imaging techniques available to identify the presence of lesions, diagnose HCC, and determine staging, all critical to making informed treatment decisions.OHSU will partner with the University of Washington CHASE Alliance for this review, which runs from March 15, 2013 to March 14, 2014.

A task order awarded in May focuses on the effectiveness and risks of long-term opioid treatment of chronic pain. The project will run from May 30, 2013 to November 19, 2014, with Dr. Chou as principal investigator, and includes a topic refinement project as well as a systematic review. As one of the EPC partners, the University of Washington (UW) CHASE Alliance will work with OHSU on this topic. Richard Deyo, M.D., MPH, Kaiser Permanente Endowed Professor of Evidence-based Medicine in the Department of Family Medicine, is a co-investigator.

EPC investigators on a third task order will conduct a topic refinement and systematic review on diagnosis and treatment of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, a condition that affects an estimated 800,00 people in the U.S. M.E. Beth Smith, D.O., assistant professor of medicine, will lead the project, which runs from June 7, 2013 to December 6, 2014. Co-investigators at OHSU include Marian McDonagh, Pharm.D., associate professor of medical informatics and clinical epidemiology and EPC associate director, Heidi Nelson, M.D., MPH, research professor of medical informatics and clinical epidemiology, Annette Totten, Ph.D., research assistant professor of medical informatics and clinical epidemiology, and Elizabeth Haney, M.D., associate professor of medicine.

OHSU issues system-wide preventive screening
recommendations

A committee comprised of physicians and researchers from multiple specialties, led by Mike Bonazzola, M.D., assistant professor of medicine and chief medical officer for the OHSU Faculty Practice Plan, has issued OHSU-wide recommendations for adult preventive services.

The Clinical Decisions Support Committee met regularly for more than a year in order to come to consensus on how to guide patients and colleagues. Recommendations such as these – available to the public and considered institution-wide – did not exist prior to the work of the committee.

The group was charged with reviewing the evidence and recommendations from the federal U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. See the Bridges article below for more background about this committee.
Another project led by Dr. Chou – a technical brief – will focus on imaging techniques for metastatic breast cancer and provide an overview of key issues related to these medical technologies. This task order runs from August 12, 2013 to March 12, 2014, with OHSU working with the UW CHASE Alliance.

With a rapid increase in the use of spinal injection therapies in the past decade, the EPC will conduct a topic refinement, with an option for a systematic review, on pain management injection therapies for low back pain. With the UW CHASE Alliance and Spectrum Research, Inc. as partners, the project will be led by Dr. Chou and runs from August 21, 2013 to February 20, 2014.

A sixth task order from AHRQ will focus on bladder cancer, the fourth most commonly diagnosed cancer in men and the 10th most commonly diagnosed cancer in women in the U.S. The project runs from September 9, 2013 to March 7, 2014 for topic refinement, with an option for two systematic reviews. Led by Dr. Chou, the project also involves the UW CHASE Alliance, with OHSU co-investigators David Buckley, M.D., MPH, research assistant professor of family medicine, and Shelley Selph, M.D., EPC post-doctoral fellow.

Dr. McDonagh will serve as principal investigator on a topic refinement on reducing inappropriate antibiotic use in acute cough illness, which encompasses conditions including acute bronchitis, upper respiratory infection, acute respiratory infection,rhinitis, and the common cold. The project runs from September 9, 2013 to March 7, 2014, with an option for a subsequent systematic review. Dr. Buckley, Kevin Winthrop, M.D., MPH, associate professor of ophthalmology, and Amy Cantor, M.D., assistant professor of family medicine, are co-investigators.

Spectrum Research, Inc. will lead the task order for topic refinement on catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation, running from September 12, 2103 to March 11, 2014, with an option for a subsequent systematic review. Along with Dr. McDonagh, the project will involve two investigators from Duke University.

With the University of Washington as the lead, the EPC, from September 23, 2013 to September 22, 2014, will assist the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) with development of potential research topics in PCORI's Improving Health Systems program area.

Finally, William Hersh, M.D., professor and chair of medical informatics and clinical epidemiology, is principal investigator in the topic refinement and systematic review on health information exchange, which brings together investigators from both sides of the department. The project runs from September 23, 2013 through May 22, 2015

Dr. McDonagh summed up the recent spate of EPC awards:"It is very rewarding to have both our expertise in evidence review and the extensive capabilities of our new partnership be recognized in such a compelling way," she said. "I think we can anticipate that our future as the Pacific Northwest EPC will be highly successful."

Written by Kathryn Pyle. Reprinted with permission from DMICE Tracks.

Pictured above: The leadership of the Pacific Northwest Evidence-based Practice Center includes Elaine Graham, M.L.S., program manager, Roger Chou, M.D., director, and Marian McDonagh, Pharm.D., associate director.

 

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