A multidisciplinary team of researchers led by IU Center for Bioethics director Peter H. Schwartz, MD., Ph.D. has been awarded a supplement to their award from the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to study the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on cancer screening and prevention. The goal is to understand the forces that led to the severe drop in screening during the pandemic; how clinics, providers, and patients responded; and the long-term implications for healthcare and prevention.
The study team plans to interview healthcare system leadership, quality managers, providers, and staff from Eskenazi and IU Health about the challenges the pandemic posed for screening and how they responded. Since the healthcare team is only part of the story when it comes to cancer screening rates and prevention, the research team will also be interviewing patients from Eskenazi and IU Health to understand the decisions they made to be screened, or not to be screened, during the pandemic.
The findings will be reported back to the participating health systems and providers, under the guidance of co-investigator and implementation expert Dr. Teresa Damush. This study aims to identify initiatives that hold promise for responding to the challenges of cancer screening and prevention during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.
The award for this study supplements a current award from PCORI to the research team that is supporting a randomized trial that is studying the impact of precision health on patient decision making about colon cancer screening. See more information about this study here.