PCORI is authorized through September 30, 2019. At that point, PCORI will no longer have the authority to commit to new research grants, and only previously-awarded grants will continue to be funded through FY2024. Congress must act to ensure continued support for this critical research helping patients and providers make evidence-based health care decisions that work best for them.
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) is an independent, non-profit, nongovernmental organization authorized by the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA)” to study how different medications and treatments compare, so patients and their caregivers have the information they need to choose the health care and treatment options that are best for them.
PCORI does this by funding comparative clinical effectiveness research, or CER, as well as supporting work that will improve the methods and infrastructure used to conduct such studies.
PCORI is supported by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Trust Fund (PCOR Trust Fund) of which 80 percent is provided to PCORI to support its research funding and operations and 20 percent is provided to AHRQ and the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) to disseminate CER research findings and build data capacity for PCOR, respectively. The PCOR Trust Fund receives income each year from three funding streams: appropriations from the general fund of the Treasury, transfers from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid trust funds, and a fee assessed on private insurance and self-insured health plans (the PCOR fee).
As of December 2018, PCORI has awarded more than $2.4 billion in grants to more than 600 research-related projects. In 2014 PCORI saw the first large number of research results from its funded studies reported in major medical journals. Several of these projects generated particularly promising evidence for improving care and patient outcomes in key areas, such as cardiovascular disease, prostate cancer, opioid prescribing, and type 2 diabetes management.
PCORI’S Unique Role In Health Research
“Patient centered” is the guiding principle that drives PCORI’s work. It engages patients and their caregivers, alongside clinicians and payers, throughout the research process, from reviewing proposals to helping guide studies and disseminate findings. PCORI’s research is unique and complementary to NIH (discovery), AHRQ (health services research), and FDA (safety and efficacy). PCORI is the only research organization dedicated to funding studies comparing which care approach works best, for whom, and under which circumstances. Also, PCORI is the only research funder guided by input from patients. To ensure that studies produce useful information, PCORI requires that contracted researchers engage patients and other stakeholders throughout the entirety of the research process.
The complete statute is available here: Public Law 111-148, Subtitle D of Title VI – Sec. 6301. Patient-Entered Outcomes Research