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Assembling a Systematic Review Team: The Duke Experience (Text Version)

Slide presentation from the AHRQ 2011 conference.

On September 20, 2011, Gillian Sanders Schmidler made this presentation at the 2011 Annual Conference. Select to access the PowerPoint® presentation (470 KB). Plugin Software Help.

Slide 1

Assembling a Systematic Review Team: The Duke Experience

Gillian D Sanders PhD
EPC Director
Associate Professor of Medicine
Duke Clinical Research Institute
Duke University

Slide 2

AHRQ Evidence-based Practice Centers (EPCs)

  • BCBS Technology Evaluation Center (TEC):
    • Naomi Aronson, PhD.
  • Duke University:
    • Gillian Sanders PhD.
  • ECRI Institute:
    • Karen Schoelles, MD, SM.
  • Johns Hopkins University:
    • Eric B. Bass, MD, MPH.
  • McMaster University:
    • Parminder Raina, PhD.
  • Oregon Health & Science Univ:
    • Mark Helfand, MD, MPH.
  • RTI International/UNC:
    • Meera Viswanathan, PhD
  • Southern California RAND:
    • Paul Shekelle, MD, PhD
  • Tufts University—NEMC:
    • Joseph Lau, MD
  • University of Alberta:
    • Terry P. Klassen, MD, MSc
    • Brian H. Rowe, MD, MSc
  • University of Connecticut:
    • C. Michael White, PharmD
  • Minnesota:
    • Robert L. Kane, M.D.
    • Timothy J. Wilt, MD, MPH
  • University of Ottawa:
    • David Moher, PhD
  • Vanderbilt University:
    • Katherine Hartman, MD, PhD

Slide 3

Duke EPC Project Portfolio

  1. Cardiovascular disease topic identification.
  2. Atrial fibrillation: Treatment
  3. Atrial fibrillation: Stroke prevention.
  4. Future research needs: ACEIs and ARBs in essential hypertension.
  5. Non invasive testing for coronary artery disease in women.
  6. Treatment of coronary artery disease in women.
  7. Treatment strategies for peripheral artery disease.
  8. Antiplatelet and anticoagulant treatments for unstable angina for UA/NSTEMI.
  9. Transitions of care for stroke and MI.
  10. ECG signal-based analysis.
  11. Noninvasive positive pressure ventilation for acute respiratory failure.
  12. Diagnosis and management of chronic cough.
  13. Pulmonary aterial hypertension.
  14. Methods modules for diagnostic test evaluation.
  15. Oral contraceptive use for the Primary Prevention of Ovarian Cancer.
  16. Screening for postpartum depression.
  17. Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDS) in children with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.
  18. Enabling healthcare decisionmaking through clinical decision support and knowledge management.
  19. Closing the quality gap series: The medical home.
  20. Treatment of serious mental illness.

Slide 4

Composition of Project Teams

  • Staff:
    • Project Leader.
    • Project Coordinator.
    • Editor.
    • Medical Librarian.
  • Investigators (4-8):
    • EPC Oversight.
    • Principal Investigator.
    • Co-investigators (clinical).
    • Co-investigators (methodological).
    • Statistical investigator.

Slide 5

Other Potential Roles

  • Key informants.
  • Technical expert panel.
  • Peer reviewer.

Slide 6

Duke University: EPC Organizational Chart

Image: A flow chart with the following people is displayed.

Gillian D Sanders, PhD
EPC Director

Rowena J Dolor MD, MHS
EPC Associate Director

Rebecca Gray, DPhil
Liz Wing, BS, MA
EPC Editors

Rachael Posey, MSLS
Senior Data Tech

Mike Musty, BA
Research Analyst

Julian Irvine, MCM
Research Analyst

Amy Kendrick RN, MSN, MS-CRM
EPC Manager

RhaShawn Wells
Business Development Associate

Juanita Daniels
Financial Analyst

Connie Schardt, MLS
Megan Von Isenburg, MLS
Scientific Librarians

Alice Thacher, MBA
Research Aide

Amanda McBroom, PhD
Project Leader II

Beverly Perkins, AD
Administrative Assistant

Principal Investigators


Karen Pendergast, MPH
Project Leader I

Research Aide

Corey Hadley, MM

Brooke Heidenfelder, PhD
Project Leader I

Slide 7

Investigators on Current EPC Projects


  • Adrian Hernandez.
  • Bimal Shah.
  • Chiara Melloni.
  • Galen Wagner.
  • Jeffrey Washam.
  • Judson Williams.
  • Karen Alexander.
  • Manesh Patel.
  • Matthew Brennan.
  • Monique Anderson.
  • Renato Lopes.
  • Sana Al-Khatib.
  • Sreekanth Vemulapalli.
  • Sumeet Subherwal.
  • William Schuyler.
  • Zubin Eapen.


  • Bill Hargett.
  • Chris Cox.
  • Chris Castillo.
  • Daniel Grilstrap.
  • Joe Govert.
  • Njira Ludugo.

General Internal Medicine:

  • Rowena Dolor.
  • Adia Ross.
  • Benjamin Power.
  • David Matchar.
  • Doug McCrory.
  • George Jackson.
  • John Williams.
  • Karen Alexander.
  • Kristine Schmidt.
  • Lori Bastian.
  • Matt Crowley.
  • Ranee Chatterjee.
  • Will Yancy.


  • Carmelo Graffignino.
  • Dai Wai Olson.


  • Alex Kemper.
  • Heather VanMater.

Family Medicine:

  • David Lobach.
  • Remy Coeytaux.


  • Janet Prvu Bettger.
  • Kathy Wood.

OBGYN/Gyn Oncology:

  • Evan Myers.
  • Geeta Swamy.
  • Laura Havrilesky.
  • Jeff Lowery.
  • Rachel Pergallo.


  • Marla Wald.
  • Bill Meyers.


  • Gillian Sanders.
  • Andrzej Kosinski.
  • Cindy Green.
  • Gregory Samsa.
  • Jennifer Gierisch.
  • Nancy Allen Lapointe.
  • Trish Moorman.
  • Vic Hasselblad.

Slide 8

Managing Conflicts

  • Make clear up front potential conflicts—financial and intellectual.
  • Delve down in to possible conflicts.
  • Discuss with AHRQ/Task Order Officers.
  • Understand that a conflict on one project doesn't mean the investigators will be conflicted on all projects.
  • Discuss other potential roles within projects/EPC.
  • Understand incentives for/against participating.

Slide 9

Building a Team

  • Use of fellows, housestaff, junior investigators.
  • Building investigator relationships beyond one project.
  • Having high-level staff to ensure positive EPC experience.
  • Development of methodological abilities in general internists.
  • Working with Division Chiefs to identify investigators.
  • Establishing potential of comparative effectiveness research/systematic reviews as area of research focus.
  • Availability of sustained funding (short term/long term).

Slide 10


Page last reviewed October 2014
Internet Citation: Assembling a Systematic Review Team: The Duke Experience (Text Version). October 2014. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


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