Christopher J. Hartnick, MD, MS, director of the Division of Pediatric Otolaryngology at Mass Eye and Ear, was recently named a recipient of a collaborative $5.6 million grant from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to study interventions that could help improve the coordination of at-home care for children with tracheostomies.
PCORI is an independent, nonprofit organization whose mission is to fund research that provides patients, their caregivers and clinicians with evidence-based information needed to make more-informed healthcare decisions. Joining Dr. Hartnick as a recipient under the grant is Karen Sepucha, PhD, director of the Health Decision Sciences Center at Massachusetts General Hospital.
With the support of their new grant, Drs. Hartnick and Sepucha will launch a study designed to evaluate how a multifaceted intervention strategy can improve the health and safety of children with tracheotomies receiving care at home and reduce the stress and burden placed on parents, who become the primary caregivers upon their child’s discharge from the hospital.
As a part of the study, Dr. Hartnick will work with Kevin Mary Callans, RN, senior nurse coordinator at Mass Eye and Ear and co-investigator of the study, to design and implement several initiatives that will better prepare caregivers after discharge and ease caregiver burden. The study will then evaluate the effectiveness of the intervention strategy in a randomized, controlled environment across six nationwide sites, which will include Mass General, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Rady Children’s Hospital- San Diego, Children’s Minnesota, Children’s National Hospital in Washington D.C., and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
“The enthusiasm of the parent caregivers and the clinical team, including our colleagues at the participating sites, really underscores how important this area is,” said Dr. Hartnick. “Everyone recognizes the need to alleviate caregiver burden, and this study will help us find evidence-based solutions.”