Department of Medicine

University of Pittsburgh

GIM News
Donna L. Bishop, Editor

Next issue:
December 2014

Submission deadline:
November 14, 2014


Grants and Funding

Subject: Expanding National Capacity in PCOR through Training (ENACT)
Principal Investigator: Douglas Landsittel, PhD
Sponsor: Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (AHRQ)
Purpose of Grant: This study develops and implements an online and experiential training program to increase the capacity of the U.S. workforce and Minority-Serving Institutions in patient-centered outcomes research.

Subject: In Their Own Voice: Insights as to How an Ethics Education Network Can Serve as a Moral Community
Principal Investigator: Aviva Katz, MD, MA
Sponsor: Nazareth Family Foundation
Purpose of Grant: The ultimate goal of this grant is to deepen the health care professionals’ understanding of various faith and religious traditions and that by becoming more aware of different traditions, practices and cultures they are better equipped to discuss end of life issues and care for patients at the bedside at the end of life and within their daily clinical practice. This grant will be carried out in a variety of formats including formal education regarding various religious traditions; onsite education at each CEP member institution, and the creation of an Interfaith Advisory Panel to assist CEP representatives with questions that may arise in the context of an ethics consult. By providing a broader understanding regarding various religious practices and traditions, and their impact on patient/family medical decision making and holistic understanding of illness, this grant will better equip frontline health care providers when navigating through treatment decisions with patients and families.

Subject: Evaluating Inpatient Alcohol/ Tobacco Performance Measure Implementation
Principal Investigator: Lauren Broyles, PhD, RN
Sponsor: VA Office of Nursing Services
Purpose of Grant: The goal of this project is to identify the clinician, system, and patient level factors that influence the initiation and sustainability of The Joint Commission alcohol/tobacco measure implementation at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System.

Subject: VISN4 Hypertension Racial Disparity Quality Improvement Project
Principal Investigator: Leslie Hausmann, PhD
Sponsor: VISN4
Purpose of Grant: The goals of this project are to evaluate the action plans implemented across VA health care facilities in VISN4 to improve blood pressure control and reduce racial disparities among hypertensive veterans and inform future VA-wide efforts to improve the quality and equity of health care for veterans with hypertension and other common medical conditions.

Subject: VA/Non-VA Opioid Use Quality Improvement
Principal Investigator: C Bernie Good, MD, MPH, and Walid Gellad, MD, MPH
Sponsor: VA Pharmacy Benefits Management
Purpose of Grant: This funding supports development and implementation of research and quality improvement initiatives to improve the quality, safety, and value of opioid therapy in the VA Healthcare System.

Subject: Understanding Women's Disparities in Satisfaction with VA Healthcare
Principal Investigator: Susan Zickmund, PhD
Sponsor: VA Health Services Research and Development
Purpose of Grant: This study will pinpoint areas of dissatisfaction with VA health care among minority and non-minority women veterans as well as potential solutions to improve care.

Subject: VA Homeless Patient-Aligned Care Teams - A National Implementation Evaluation
Principal Investigator: Adam J Gordon, MD, MPH
Sponsor: VA Health Services Research and Development Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI)
Purpose of Grant: Eliminating veteran homelessness is among the highest priorities in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). Another VHA priority is to redesign health care delivery through implementation of the Patient-Aligned Care Teams (PACTs) - an interdisciplinary, team-based health care "medical home" delivery model that focuses on providing timely, comprehensive, coordinated health care. In 2012, the VHA funded 38 national demonstration Homeless PACTs (HPACTs) designated to provide primary care that engages veterans who are homeless or at-risk for homelessness; 12 additional HPACTs are planned. Using an implementation science framework, this team will identify the provider- and system-level barriers and facilitators to implementation of HPACTs, and identify the processes of alcohol and/or other drug (AOD) and mental health (MH) problem (a) identification, (b) treatment, and (c) referral to treatment and provider perceptions of barriers and facilitators associated with AOD and MH care execution within HPACT.

Subject: Staying Positive: An Intervention to Reduce Osteoarthritis Pain Disparities
Principal Investigator: Leslie R M Hausmann, PhD
Sponsor: VA Health Services Research and Development
Purpose of Grant: Using an evidence-based, psychosocial intervention from the field of psychology, this study examines a novel way to improve pain and functioning and reduce disparities among African American and white Veterans with osteoarthritis.

Subject: Investigating Racial Differences in Low-Income Men's Fertility Intentions and Behavior
Principal Investigator: Sonya Borrero, MD, MS
Sponsor: National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Subject: Homeless Veterans Opinions of Integrated Care Environments: A Photo Narrative Study
Principal Investigator: Lauren Broyles, PhD, RN (Co-PI)
Sponsor: VISN4 Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center Pilot Research Program
Purpose of Grant: This study will explore veterans’ attitudes and experiences with managing their health, including perceived factors affecting health care utilization delivered in an integrated care environment for veterans who are homeless or at-risk to become homeless.

Subject: Understanding the Long-Term Impact of a Positive Activities Program on Osteoarthritis Pain and Functioning in Veterans
Principal Investigator: Leslie R M Hausmann, PhD
Sponsor: VA Health Services Research and Development
Purpose of Grant: The objective of this pilot project is to determine whether improvements observed 1 month after implementation a patient-centered, non-invasive intervention to improve pain outcomes in African American and white Veterans with knee or hip osteoarthritis persist at 6 months.

Subject: Transcription and Survey Services Needs Assessment and Pilot
Principal Investigator: Galen Switzer, PhD, and Susan Zickmund, PhD (Co-Directors)
Sponsor: VA Health Services Research and Development
Purpose of Grant: The objectives are to: (1) describe VA health services researchers’ needs for survey and transcription support services; (2) resolve administrative barriers to centralization of survey and transcription services; and (3) pilot test provision of centralized transcription services to Health Services Research and Development investigators at other VA Centers of Innovation.

Subject: Advancing VA Interdisciplinary Addiction Training, Research, and Scholarship (AVIATORS) Center
Principal Investigator: Adam J Gordon, MD, MPH, and Lauren Broyles, PhD, RN (Co-Directors)
Sponsor: VA Office of Academic Affiliations
Purpose of Grant: This award will provide support for a national coordinating center for the VA interdisciplinary training program in addiction treatment and research. The Center will (1) facilitate fellows’ achievement of core competencies in addiction care and research by developing, leading, and implementing a national interdisciplinary addiction curriculum; (2) coordinate liaison opportunities between the sites and VA leadership, coordinate and oversee site program leadership, and assume responsibility for routine program operations; (3) develop and implement an overall evaluation program; and (4) disseminate and promote the VA Interdisciplinary Addiction Fellowships, their scholars, and scholarship.