Pediatric Research in Inpatient Settings Network

Early Years

PRIS is an open pediatric hospitalist network that was formed in 2001 with joint sponsorship of the Academic Pediatric Association (APA), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM). The early years of PRIS were focused on capitalizing on the enthusiasm in the field and building membership, establishing relationships within the national organizations and amongst pediatric research network leaders, and conducting studies on practice patterns of pediatric hospitalists, documenting organizational structures and the variation of care within inpatient pediatrics and their relationship to outcomes. PRIS received financial support from the APA for a network coordinator who was shared with another APA network, CORNET

Strategic Planning Roundtable

In 2009, the Strategic Planning Roundtable of Pediatric Hospitalist Medicine was convened with 22 national leaders from across the U.S. and Canada. From that meeting, research within the field of pediatric hospitalist medicine was discussed and strategically voted as the most important future contribution to the field. As such, PRIS underwent a redesign (from May 2009 – July 2010) which involved several critical steps. Individual pediatric hospitalist medicine investigators with a proven track record of publications and funding were sought to form a new Executive Council within PRIS. Their charge was to lead PRIS from its previous incarnation into a new arena of stable infrastructure funding, growing the membership and helping sites establish their capacity to conduct high quality studies, oversee the conduct of the next series of studies that are transformative to the field of inpatient pediatrics, and mentor the next generation of hospitalist investigators to continue the work of PRIS. The APA played a key role in the redesign by working with PRIS to help form its new Executive Council.

The Executive Council was charged with accomplishing the tasks outlined from the Strategic Planning Roundtable. They have created the governance documents and standard operating procedures necessary for PRIS to conduct multi-center studies, defined a strategic framework for PRIS including the mission, vision and values and funding strategy. In February 2010, PRIS received a three year award for over $1 million from the Child Health Corporation of America), a business alliance of 42 children's hospitals and their CEO's to work on an initial study (Prioritization Project) that will help guide PRIS on prioritizing future studies in the field of pediatric hospital medicine. The grant funds both the infrastructure of PRIS and to conduct a Prioritization Project. The Prioritization Project seeks to identify the conditions that are costly, prevalent, and demonstrate high inter-hospital variation in resource utilization, which signals either lack of high quality data upon which to base medical decisions, and/or an opportunity to standardize care across hospitals. Some of these conditions will warrant further investigation to define the evidence base whereas other conditions may require implementation studies to reliably introduce evidence into practice.

PRIS Redesign

Members of the Executive Council received additional funding to investigate community settings as most children are hospitalized outside of large children's hospitals. PRIS also reengaged all three societies (APA, AAP and SHM) for support for the first face-to-face meeting of the Executive Council. PRIS applied for two Recovery Act stimulus grants, and received funding for both of approximately $12 million. The processes used to design, provide feedback and shepherd these initial studies formed the basis for the standard operating procedures for the Network. PRIS is now re-engaging its membership to establish how sites may be able to conduct research, and receive new ideas to be considered for study in PRIS. Although much work remains to be done, the redesign of PRIS is over. The Network is open for new proposals. The Executive Council has quarterly face-to-face meetings. PRIS has its own full-time Network Coordinator that is internally funded from PRIS grants. The Network is committed to carrying out these initial projects, while maintaining the goal of meeting the needs of the PRIS membership and larger pediatric hospital medicine community. If PRIS is to accomplish its mission of improving the health of and healthcare delivery to hospitalized children and their families, then the types of studies undertaken will include not only original research questions, but also comparative implementation methods to better understand how hospitalists in a variety of settings can best translate research findings into clinical practice and ultimately improve patient outcomes.