SCILHS - Scalable Collaborative Infrastructure for a Learning Health System

SCILHS Approved for $8.6 million to support Second Phase of Development

by Kate McGroarty-King

SCILHS, The Scalable Collaborative Infrastructure for a Learning Healthcare system, has been approved for a three-year funding award by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) as part of the second phase of the development of PCORnet, the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network.

SCILHS leverages an informatics infrastructure that our investigators have developed over the past 15 years in the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Harvard Medical School, the Computational Health Informatics Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, and Partners Healthcare.  SCILHS includes 14 healthcare centers throughout the U.S., representing the full diversity of to develop the Scalable Collaborative Infrastructure for a Learning Health System (SCILHS, pronounced “skills”). An open-source platform, the system covers more than 12 million patients and drives clinician and patient participation in research.

“SCILHS will move innovative informatics from the research lab to the point of care,” said Ken Mandl, SCILHS PI. “We are flipping clinical trials to a patient-driven and data driven model, embedded in the care delivery system.”

This funding award continues PCORI’s support for SCILHS participation in PCORnet, a large, collaborative research initiative designed to link researchers, patient communities, clinicians, and health systems in productive research partnerships that leverage the power of large volumes of health data maintained by the partner networks.

PCORI provided $7 million to SCILHS during the first phase of PCORnet’s development, which began in the spring of 2014.

“We’re pleased that SCILHS has been approved for this funding support to continue our productive mutual efforts to build what we intend to be a premier national resource for conducting high-quality, patient-centered clinical research,” said PCORI Executive Director Joe Selby, MD, MPH. “I greatly appreciate the contributions of all the PCORnet partners during Phase I, which readied PCORnet for a robust start on an exciting second phase of expansion and the launch of several research studies.”

The funding award to SCILHS has been approved by PCORI’s Board pending completion of a business and programmatic review by PCORI staff and negotiation of a formal award contract. PCORI is an independent, non-profit organization authorized by Congress in 2010 to fund research that will provide patients, their caregivers and clinicians with the evidence-based information they need to make better-informed healthcare decisions. PCORI is committed to continuously seeking input from a broad range of stakeholders to guide its work.