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October 26, 2000, Issue No. 16

AHRQ News and Numbers

Today's Headlines:

  1. Three AHRQ-related articles in JAMA
  2. AHRQ's comprehensive anti-bioterrorism research portfolio
  3. Integrated delivery system research network (IDSRN) task awards
  4. Nation Advisory Council Meeting
  5. New topics for evidence-based practice centers
  6. TRIP II grant awards
  7. Centers of excellence for patient safety research and practice RFA
  8. Children's health care research update
  9. Tell us what you think about our Web site
  10. Job openings at AHRQ
  11. New employee at AHRQ
  12. Highlights from the most recent edition of our monthly newsletter
  13. AHRQ in the news
  14. Factoid

1.  Three AHRQ-Related Articles in JAMA

Three AHRQ-related articles dealing with issues related to high-quality, cost-effective health care are featured in the October 25 issue of the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA). The articles, one of which is co-authored by AHRQ Director John Eisenberg, M.D., offer insights into the link between insurance coverage and quality health care; the cost-effectiveness of comprehensive neonatal followup care for high-risk infants; and the role of state scholarship and loan forgiveness programs on the primary care workforce. Select the JAMA table of contents Exit Disclaimer to access the three articles—"Transforming Insurance Coverage Into Quality Health Care: Voltage Drops From Potential to Delivered Quality," by John M. Eisenberg, M.D., M.B.A., and Elaine J. Power, M.P.P; "Comprehensive Follow-Up Care and Life-Threatening Illnesses Among High-Risk Infants: A Randomized Clinical Trial," by Sue Broyles, M.D., Jon E. Tyson, M.D., M.P.H.; and "State Scholarship, Loan Forgiveness, and Related Programs: The Unheralded Safety Net" by Donald Pathman, M.D., M.P.H.

2.  AHRQ's Comprehensive Anti-Bioterrorism Research Portfolio

AHRQ issued an October 18 press release detailing the agency's comprehensive strategy to assess the U.S. health care system's capacity to respond to and manage bioterrorism. The press release outlines AHRQ-sponsored contracts and grants for research aimed at helping physicians, hospitals, emergency medical personnel, and others detect and respond to potential bioterrorist threats. In addition, AHRQ Director John Eisenberg participated in a joint press conference in Pittsburgh on October 18 with officials from the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University, who are using a $1million award from AHRQ to help establish a new Biomedical Security Institute. The AHRQ initiative is part of a larger anti-bioterrorism effort underway throughout the Federal government.

3.  Integrated Delivery System Research Network (IDSRN) Task Awards

AHRQ announced 10 research projects for the Integrated Delivery System Research Network (IDSRN). The network links the nation's top researchers with some of the largest health care systems for conducting fast-track research on cutting-edge issues in health care. The IDSRN projects will inform the development of the nation's data and measurement capacity and contribute to best practices on how to structure health care organizations.

4.  National Advisory Council (NAC) Meeting

The AHRQ National Advisory Council is scheduled to meet on Friday, November 3 at 6010 Executive Boulevard, Rockville, MD. The Council will discuss these specific topics:

5.  New Topics for Evidence-based Practice Centers

AHRQ announced 15 new research topics for the Evidence-based Practice Centers (EPCs). The EPCs will examine Parkinson's disease, bioterrorism, stroke, and 12 other health care topics.

6.  TRIP II RFA Grant Awards

AHRQ awarded 13 new cooperative agreements on October 19 to demonstrate and evaluate different strategies for translating research into practice. The overall aim of the program is to help accelerate the impact of research on practice and thereby improve outcomes, quality, effectiveness, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of health care.

7.  Centers of Excellence for Patient Safety Research and Practice RFA

AHRQ is seeking applications from academic institutions, nonprofit organizations, and delivery systems to establish as many as six new Centers of Excellence for Patient Safety Research and Practice. AHRQ expects to award up to $5 million for this Request for Applications (RFA), the first in a series to be released under the Agency's new patient safety and medical errors research program. AHRQ plans to release another five patient safety RFAs in FY 2001. At the heart of this patient safety competitive demonstration program is a portfolio of projects to test the effectiveness, costs, and cost-effectiveness of diverse reporting strategies and information technology innovation on the identification, management, and reduction of medical errors. For more information on the Centers of Excellence for Patient Safety Research and Practice RFA, select to access the October 24, 2000, NIH Guide.

8.  Chidren's Health Care Issues Update

An article in the October issue of Health Services Research details AHRQ's current child health research portfolio. The article, by AHRQ Senior Advisor on Child Health Denise Dougherty, Ph.D.; AHRQ Deputy Director Lisa A. Simpson, M.B., B.Ch., M.P.H.; and AHRQ Director John M. Eisenberg, M.D., also describes the Agency's capacity to respond to emerging issues in the area. Children's health is a priority area for AHRQ as defined in our strategic plan. Copies of the article are available from the AHRQ Publications Clearinghouse, 1-800-358-9295.

9.  Tell Us What You Think About Our Web Site

Your feedback is important to us, and we are conducting an online evaluation of the AHRQ Web site. We would greatly appreciate your help in reviewing and rating the redesigned site. Recommendations and comments from last year's online Web site evaluation were incorporated in the redesign to be responsive to feedback. Please take a moment to look over and evaluate the site the next few days and fill out the online survey. Thanks for your help.

10.  Job Openings at AHRQ

AHRQ is seeking applicants for the position of Director of the Office of Priority Populations.

Select to access the see the complete list of vacancy announcements.

11.  New Employee at AHRQ

Joanna Siegel, Sc.D., R.N., has joined AHRQ as the director of the research initiative in clinical economics. Dr. Siegel comes to AHRQ from the Arlington Health Foundation, where she served as director of evaluation. She received her doctorate from Harvard, co-directed the HHS Panel on Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine, and co-edited a book on the effectiveness of prenatal care.

12.  Highlights from the Most Recent Edition of our Monthly Newsletter

The new issue of Research Activities is in the mail. The key articles are:

  1. Teaching hospitals provide better care for older heart attack patients.
  2. Adjustment for breast cancer survivors often involves turning their tragedy into positive meaning.
  3. Researchers examine access to care, symptom prevalence, and health care services for patients with HIV infection.
  4. AHRQ expands program to improve safe and effective use of medical products.

Select to access the September issue of Research Activities.

13.  AHRQ in the News

Brandenburg JA, Marrie TJ, Coley CM, et al. Clinical presentation, processes and outcomes of care for patients with pneumococcal pneumonia. J Gen Intern Med 2000 Sept; 15(9):638-46.

Fleishman JA, Sherbourne CD, Crystal S, et al. Coping, conflictual social interactions, social support, and mood among HIV-infected persons. Am J Community Psychol 2000; 28(4):421-53.

Frazier AL, Colditz GA, Fuchs CS, et al. Cost-effectiveness of screening for colorectal cancer in the general population. JAMA 2000 Oct 18; 284(15):1954-61.

Khandker RK, Dulksi JD, Kilpatrick JB, et al. A decision model and cost-effectiveness analysis of colorectal cancer screening and surveillance guidelines for average-risk adults. Int J Tech Assess Health Care 2000 Summer; 16(3):799-810.

Leatherman S, Donaldson LJ, Eisenberg JM. International collaboration: harnessing differences to meet common needs in improving quality of care. Qual Health Care 2000 Sept; 9(3):143-45.

14.  Factoid

Government (Medicare and Medicaid) is billed for over half (54 percent) of all hospital stays.

Source: Elixhauser, A, Yu K, Steiner C, and Bierman AS. Hospitalization in the United States, 1997. Rockville (MD): Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2000. HCUP Fact Book No. 1.

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Current as of October 2000


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