On September 27, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) announced a new challenge competition to explore the feasibility, resources and infrastructure needed to integrate real-world healthcare system data into AHRQ’s systematic review findings to improve healthcare practice. The top award winner could earn up to $200,000.
In a news release outlining its goals and the application process, The AHRQ explained that, ideally, these data will enable the healthcare system to decide which practices to incorporate locally and how to overcome barriers to implement the evidence to improve clinical practice, healthcare system operations and health outcomes.
The challenge competition includes two phases. The first phase seeks proposals to supplement identified AHRQ systematic reviews with healthcare system data to address relevant problems in the applicant’s healthcare system. The second phase requests an analysis of healthcare system data alongside systematic review findings to address those problems. These analyses must also include a related detailed report of resources required. Phase one submissions are due to Challenge.gov by 7:00pm ET on January 9, 2023.
“Healthcare systems may consider augmenting systematic review findings by addressing an identified evidence gap or examining the applicability of review findings to real-world health system populations,” said Craig Umscheid, M.D., M.S., director of the Evidence-based Practice Center Division and Senior Science Advisor at AHRQ. “These proposals will help us understand if and how data outside of existing systematic reviews, particularly from healthcare systems themselves, can be used alongside our systematic reviews to improve decision making, healthcare delivery and potentially patient outcomes.”
This challenge competition builds on previous competitions that AHRQ has held. These challenge competitions are developed to foster solutions to specific issues, such as creating an app to track patient-reported outcomes, developing a tool to better interpret community health needs based on social determinants of health and improving postpartum mental health care for rural families.
The top five entries in phase one will be invited to participate in phase two. After phase two, each of the top five entries will receive cash awards of $50,000. Additionally, the phase two first-place winner will be awarded an extra $150,000 and the second-place winner will be awarded an additional $100,000.