IDEAS’ mission is to advance scientific discovery, implement novel interventions, promote cross-center collaboration, increase research capacity, and engage Veterans and operational partners to improve Veteran health.
This Center's areas of research include:
The Research to Impact for VeteRans (RIVRs) program is a new HSR&D funding mechanism that gives researchers the opportunity to pursue a five-year impact goal. Each RIVR impact goal aligns with VA priority areas including VA legislative priorities (e.g., MISSION Act); cross-cutting ORD priorities (e.g. PTSD); other HSR&D defined clinical priorities (e.g. Health Equity); and HSR&D methodological priorities (e.g. Data Sciences, Implementation Sciences, Systems Engineering). Impact goals for RIVRS could include changes in VA policy or clinical guidelines, spread of operational processes across VISNs, scaling of an effective intervention to 2-3 additional sites, advancements in health services research methods, or any other impacts that have real-world effects on Veteran health and satisfaction.
Scaling the SLC Veterans on Anticancer Medications in Community and Rural Environments Support (VA CARES)
Principal Investigator: Brian Sauer, PhD
The goal of this project is to improve the effectiveness, safety, and efficiency of medication management for expensive and high-risk oral cancer medications in VISN 19, by improving care coordination between VA Oncology Clinical Pharmacy Specialists (CPS) and community prescribers of oral antineoplastic treatments (OATs, which may be administered by patients daily in their home
environment) during VA’s expansion to MISSION-funded community care. To accomplish this goal, investigators will provide enhanced informatics tools to support VA CARES, a VISN 19 comprehensive OAT medication management program for Veterans who lack access to oncology CPS to co-manage their cancer therapy. A mixed-methods research approach will inform implementation strategies tailored to the care setting (i.e., VA medical centers, Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs), and Community Care Clinics (CCSs)), provide iterative feedback to revise tactics when confronted with unexpected barriers, and guide the development of quantitative measures to evaluate clinical outcomes and cost avoidance.
The Center’s vision is to see a transformed VA leading the national fight against antimicrobial resistance. Center leadership envision a VA where powerful population analytic and cognitive support tools are used nationwide across the spectrum of Veteran healthcare with dramatically reduced risk of infection and mortality among Veterans and declining levels of antimicrobial resistance. To support this vision, Center research focuses on: 1) advancing the science of antimicrobial stewardship and infection prevention, and 2) implementing broad, system-wide surveillance of resistant organisms. Center staff are improving the application of causal inference methods to increase the speed with which salient questions in this field can be answered and interpreted. Analysis products are discussed with policy-makers to inform decision-making on all levels in VA.
Research at the Center seeks to develop and implement innovative strategies to mitigate adverse health outcomes in Veterans during periods of high vulnerability. Timely, proactive interventions have the potential to reduce mortality due to suicide and substance use disorder. Veterans’ periods of vulnerability are difficult to track with conventional data resources, such as the transition from DoD to VHA and from VHA to community care, and the Center studies will use diverse data sources and new methods to pinpoint periods of elevated risk and high need, often reflected as the absence of care, and to generate evidence about comparative effectiveness of alternative care strategies.
As VA transitions to a new electronic health record, the Center’s vision includes VA as an exceptional patient safety environment based on a confluence of informatics, health information technologies, and tools that improve medication safety. Center leadership envisions VA as a learning healthcare system that anticipates safety impacts and rapidly incorporates lessons learned.
Each COIN works closely with operational partners throughout the VA healthcare system. IDEAS partners include: