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Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to frequently asked questions about the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Partnership (PCORP) program.

PCORP FAQ

Find answers to frequently asked questions about the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Partnership (PCORP) program. Don't see your question? Contact Barbara Rose, Program Manager or Trudy San Jose White, Continuing Education Coordinator.

Who should apply for the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Partnership basic track?

The Patient Centered Outcomes Research Partnership program is for scientists, clinicians, and health care managers at select partner organizations who would benefit from training in patient-centered outcomes and the comparative effectiveness of medical treatments. On average, one to two trainees per partner organization are admitted each year for a two-year program. Applicants must be nominated through their organization to attend.

What is the cost of the basic track?

This R25 training program is collaboratively funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and by partnering organizations. As such, scholars do not pay to participate in the basic track. However, they or their organizations are responsible for the cost of travel, lodging, and food during in-person meetings. This includes one required in-person meeting which takes place for one week in Seattle during the summer of the first year. Participating organizations are also responsible for providing scholars with the release time to participate and with any in-kind resources necessary to complete their mentored project in the second year.

What will I gain through the basic track?

Scholars who successfully complete the program will be better able to conduct stakeholder-driven research to improve the quality of health care in their communities.

The program focuses on areas that will enable participants to:

  • Build knowledge and skills in patient-centered outcomes research and comparative effectiveness research
  • Partner with stakeholders to identify important evidence gaps in clinical care
  • Design and conduct high-quality studies to address evidence gaps
  • Disseminate and implement research findings
  • Evaluate and encourage the adoption of evidence in clinical practice and policy

What is the time commitment for the basic track?

Scholars in the basic curriculum track are expected to give a two-year time commitment. During these two years, they will spend, on average, 10% of an FTE, or 4 hours/week on this work.

Year one. Scholars complete online, preparatory assignments during the spring of their first year. The program officially begins with an on-site institute during the summer, usually in mid-July. The on-site session is required and takes place in Seattle. Scholars are also required to participate in webinars and other distance-related activities during the two years.

Year two. During the second year, scholars apply the skills gained in year one to a pilot research project. This project is conducted with the help of experienced mentors and should develop or answer research questions that address health disparities.

The Patient Centered Outcomes Research Partnership program is designed to take participants beyond a simple awareness level of new skills and topics. As such, scholars are expected to invest a significant amount of time each week into their coursework. Scholars typically spend  4 hours per week on webinars, assignments, and readings.

For more information see Time Commitment for Basic Track.

What are the required credentials for participating in this program? Do I have to have a doctorate degree?

We prefer individuals who have at least a master’s degree in a health-related field. Potential applicants should also have some research experience and be supported by their organization to continue doing research in either comparative effectiveness (CER) or patient-centered outcomes (PCOR). They do not have to have extensive CER or PCOR experience – we will train them in those areas.

I specialize in quality improvement, not necessarily research. Should I apply for this program?

Yes, you could, if you believe there are patient, clinical, and organizational stakeholders interested in your quality improvement efforts. Our program is developing tools and techniques that can be useful for this type of work.

How does PCORP mentoring work?

An important goal of the PCORP program is to establish and maintain learning relationships between experienced researchers at the University of Washington and experienced clinicians and health care managers at American Indian, Alaska Native, and community-based health care organizations in the WWAMI region. These relationships will be nurtured through structured mentoring.

Throughout the two-year program, scholars will work closely with a mentor from the University of Washington and one from their home organization. Mentors will help scholars design their research agenda, develop and conduct pilot studies, and seek funding or secure organizational commitment to support their independent research. After the summer institute, scholars are expected to provide monthly progress reports for their mentors.

How are organizational mentors selected, and what is their time commitment?

Scholars should identify an organizational mentor when they prepare their program application. An organizational mentor should be someone who can devote approximately 5% FTE to the scholar and has expertise in either research methods or institutional knowledge that can advance the scholar’s project. Scholars will be paired with a University of Washington mentor after the PCORP Summer Institute, a week-long onsite session in Seattle.

How are organizational mentors paid?

We compensate organizational mentors for up to 5% of their time. Our grant funds have a salary cap of $185,100. PCORP program staff will initiate an agreement with the mentor and will pay them quarterly upon their submission of an invoice to the UW PCORP program office.

Can I have more than one organizational mentor? If so, will they both be paid?

If a scholar chooses to select more than one organizational mentor, they may divide the funds available (not to exceed the equivalent of a single 5% FTE) among the various mentors. In this case, it is up to the scholar to decide how the funds would be divided.

How can I request pilot funds for my project?

A modest amount of pilot funds is available for participants to host a meeting, purchase a data set, conduct a focus group, or other activities that support an agency project. Requests will be evaluated on the following criteria: feasibility, activity’s relationship to overall project mission, availability of alternative funds, evidence of patient engagement or other collaborations, and the likelihood that pilot funding will lead to a more substantial project. Scholars will receive more information about requesting funds after the summer institute in the first year.

Does my project have to focus on stakeholder engagement?

Not necessarily, though we believe that for high quality comparative-effectiveness and patient- centered outcomes research, stakeholder engagement is a key to success. There may be a few exceptions to this, especially pilot studies to see if a problem exists or for methods development.

Does my project have to focus on health disparities or differential outcomes of some type?

Not necessarily. However, these issues are very important to the PCORP program, so those applicants and projects may be given priority over others.

Will I be required to publish the results of my project in a peer-reviewed journal?

No. We hope your work will eventually be publishable and will also lead to bigger projects and possibly continued collaborations with UW CER/PCOR colleagues. But there is no requirement to publish the results.

Where should I stay during the Seattle on-site session?

Our on-site is held on the University of Washington Seattle campus. There are a number of hotels located within walking distance or which provide shuttles to the area including: Hotel Deca, Watertown Hotel, University Inn, and Silver Cloud Inn. The Hotel Deca, Watertown, & University Inn offer a UW negotiated rate. When making reservations, mention that you are attending a UW training and ask for the UW rate. Depending on the time of year, it can be as much as 20% lower than the best rate available, and never more than the per diem.

On-campus housing
Patient-Centered Outcome Research Partnerships (PCORP) participants may reserve a room on the University of Washington Seattle campus by submitting a reservation form online or by mail or fax. Since reservations are processed on a space-available basis and inventory is limited, early applications are encouraged.

Completed reservation forms with prepayment (10% of the balance due or a $50 deposit whichever is larger) must be submitted no later than three business days prior to arrival. Please include the following sponsorship information on your reservation form: Trudy San Jose White, PCORP Summer Institute/NWCPHP, sanjose@uw.edu.

All rooms are outfitted with twin-size beds, bed linens, desks, towels, soap and drinking cups. Please note, rooms do not include TVs, hair dryers, or coffee makers. Prices range from $43 to $90 per person, per night, based on occupancy and room type. Learn more about housing options and reserve a room.

Do I need a computer or laptop to participate?

Yes. You will be required to have a laptop or computer throughout the program that allows for webinar and online course participation. You will also need to bring a laptop with you to the on-site session in Seattle. Please check technical requirements to make sure your laptop or computer is compatible with our learning systems.

Is there Internet access during the on-site sessions?

Yes, the on-site facility has free Wi-Fi. You will need to provide your own laptop or other device for checking your email. As noted above, you will need to bring a laptop with you to the on-site session, which will need to have the ability to access the Wi-Fi. Please see technical requirements for more information.