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What are Practice-Based Research Networks (PBRNs)?

A Practice-Based Research Network (PBRN) is a group of ambulatory practices principally devoted to the care of patients affiliated with each other in order to more effectively understand the health care processes that take place in everyday practices.

Who We Are

The overall goal of the PBRN Core is to support generating and applying new knowledge to improve health care and health in the community practice settings in which most people get most of their care most of the time.

The goals of the PBRN Shared Resource include:

  • Building capacity through:
    • Network development: growing new PBRNs to meet emerging opportunities, and renewing existing PBRNs by developing network leaders, steering committees and membership
    • Supporting communication among network members, community groups, and investigators
    • Developing new PBRN methods to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing environment
    • Training the next generation of PBRN investigators
  • Fostering integration through:
    • CTSC shared resources: shared staffing and consultation with other CTSC Cores
    • Health care system collaboration and infrastructure development
    • Partnership with other centers of transdisciplinary research and development
  • Catalyzing research and application through:
    • Research consultation that links investigators in community and academic settings
    • Research interest groups
    • Working at the interfaces between research, development and quality improvement
    • Pilot study initiatives
    • Collaborating on specific research project

The PBRN Shared Resource is a Core of both the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Clinical and Translational Science Collaborative and currently supports 16 practice-based research networks in Northeast Ohio, connecting network practices to academic investigation expertise and resources and linking academic investigators to community based health care practices and their patients.

The PBRN Core model is participatory, and PBRN staff support investigators in developing partnerships with the networks, facilitating the conduct of current and future research.

Benefits of engaging in PBRNs:

  • Engage clinicians and patients (the end users of medical knowledge) in interpreting and framing research questions.
  • Collaborate with clinicians who have unique insight into factors relevant to the success or failure of clinical research studies.
  • By engaging primary care practices & communities in generating and answering questions, PBRNs can diminish the problem of translating research into practice and include community perspectives in research.
  • Through the PBRN Shared Resource, gain access to the expertise of Clinical Research Facilitators (CRFs), who can facilitate research in network practices.

Interested in PBRN research?

PBRN Core services include:

  • Connecting research investigators to diverse community-based practices and patients
  • Building linkages between academic and community partners
  • Connecting network practices to academic investigation expertise and resources
  • Recruiting clinicians and patients for participation in research
  • Providing research methods consultations, study coordination, data management, survey administration
  • Offering pilot study funding to investigators and communities
  • Linking investigators to the full array of CTSC cores and services
  • Leading and coordinating scientific Interest Groups of investigators

Initial Consultations are free. Core staff can be written into grant applications as co-investigators or study staff to provide long term support for funded projects.

Contact the PBRN Shared Resource for more information at pbrn@case.edu.