PCORI Includes Hearing Health Research in Funded Studies
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), an independent non-profit, non-governmental organization, was created in 2010 to “improve the quality and relevance of evidence available to help patients, caregivers, clinicians, employers, insurers and policymakers make better-informed health decisions.”
In its latest approval of $70 million to support research, the organization has included hearing-related intervention research among the 21 funded studies that focus on improving health conditions that impose high burdens on patients, their families, and the health-care system.
Four Academy members from Northwestern University and the University of Pittsburgh lead two different awards that are receiving funding. $2.5 million was awarded to Northwestern University (headed by Sumitraijt Dhar, PhD, and Larry Humes, PhD) funding a project that compares two over-the-counter models of hearing aid distribution and fitting against audiology-based best practice with and without supplemental video learning modules, and $2.2 million was awarded to the University of Pittsburgh (headed by Catherine Palmer, PhD, and Elaine Mormer) funding a project comparing two models of hearing care follow up services in senior living communities.
Since its authorization by Congress in 2010, PCORI has funded outcomes research targeted at a wide range of topics but has made little investment into research for hearing-related interventions. This was the first specific call from PCORI related to age-related hearing loss and treatment. May these two recent awards be the beginning of a shift. The Academy urges audiology researchers to be on the lookout for future PCORI award opportunities. The more on hearing, the better!