A Practice-Based Research Network (PBRN) is what its name implies: a network of practices that is committed to pursuing late stage translational research. The goal of practice-based research is to improve care to patients, populations and communities. PBRNs have been in existence for decades — in medicine, dentistry and public health.
Led by Paul Targonski, M.D., Ph.D., Mayo Clinic Health System PBRN supports research projects that involve several different primary care practices in Rochester, Minn., and Mayo Clinic Health System, a network of clinics and hospitals serving more than 70 communities in Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
The Mayo Clinic Health System PBRN provides scientific expertise, mentorship and resources to members interested in working with colleagues on practice-based research projects.
So that research projects can fit seamlessly into clinical practice, the Mayo's PBRN provides extensive support and expert guidance at every step of the research process:
The PBRN maintains a networking database and can help match members with similar interests to facilitate collaborative research:
Practice-based research can directly impact patients by providing solutions that translate into practices and communities. Priority is given to practice-based research projects that reach a broad audience and focus on health at a community or population level. Here are three examples of active PBRN studies:
Diabetes CARe Manager Assessment (Diabetes CARMA), James Deming, M.D., Principal Investigator
Diabetes, which affects 13 percent of our country's population, extracts a heavy toll in suffering and economic costs. The chronic care model has been well established as an effective model for delivery of diabetes care. This research project seeks to inventory the methods of diabetes care adopted by the practices of Mayo Clinic Health System, particularly the role of a care manager, and correlate the methods to success in diabetes control.
Dr. Deming presented a poster at the 14th Annual Minnesota Health Services Research Conference, Saint Paul Campus, University of Minnesota, in March 2010.
Appropriateness of Medications Used Near the End of Life, Thomas Loepfe, MD, Principal Investigator
The appropriate use of medications for non-terminal illnesses in a hospice setting has not been well studied. The hypothesis is that medications may frequently be given unnecessarily in a hospice setting, increasing costs and risk of adverse drug events. During this study, medication records will be reviewed at four time periods for individuals in a home health setting for at least 30 days with a terminal diagnosis.
Posters were presented at the 2010 Minnesota Hospice and Palliative Care Conference in Minneapolis and the University of Wisconsin Institute for Medical Research in April 2010.
Community-Based Educational Intervention to Reduce Obesity and Enhance Healthy Nutritional Behaviors in the Hispanic Population, Paul Targonski, MD, PhD, Principal Investigator
Obesity is a substantial contributor to morbidity, mortality and healthcare costs nationally, with Hispanics disproportionately affected. Hispanic adults in southeast Minnesota have significantly higher body mass indices (BMI) than non-Hispanic Whites or African Americans, with a mean BMI bordering on morbid obesity. Evidence-based obesity educational programs and materials targeting Spanish-speaking Hispanics are extremely limited.
Working with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the aim is to create an effective, evidence-based obesity educational program for Spanish-speaking Hispanics administered by community health workers. The hypothesis is that adaptation of NHLBI educational materials in a structured community program will lead to six-month weight loss and improved dietary behaviors, health self-efficacy, and awareness of obesity risks among overweight Hispanics.