Latest Round of LDI Pilot Grants Awarded
Although relatively small in amount, pilot grants are mighty in their potential to kick-start new health services reseach projects and collaborations. The University of Pennsylvania's Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) supports a diverse annual program of pilot grants for its Senior Fellows and Fellows. The latest round of awards was announced in December and showcases the range of interests of LDI-affiliated researchers. Funded projects include:
Understanding Physician Values in Decisions Related to Low Value Care Services - LDI Fellow Joshua Liao will explore new strategies to reduce low value care, taking into account how physicians weigh financial incentives against professional values— those related to the well-being of patients, society, and employer organizations. Liao and colleagues will survey doctors to understand how the framing of negative impacts of low value care affects the likelihood of supporting financial incentive policies.
Predicting High-Frequency Utilization of the Pediatric Emergency Department from the Initial Visit – LDI Fellow Margaret Samuels-Kalow will use pediatric emergency department data to predict high frequency utilization in the year following a visit for an acute asthma attack. If successful, Samuels-Kalow and colleagues’ predictive model will allow them to identify the patients at greatest risk of post-discharge failure and most in need of targeted interventions.
Provision of charity care by nonprofit hospitals – LDI Senior Fellow Guy David will look at whether federal legislation mandating that nonprofit hospitals report all uncompensated care affected how these hospitals provided that care. David and colleagues will utilize differences in the degree and scope of state-level regulation to answer this question.
Variation in discharge opioid prescribing practices – LDI Senior Fellow Kit Delgado will study group-level variation in opioid prescribing practices by emergency physicians. Despite the fact that emergency departments are a leading prescriber of opioids, there is little research on prescribing practices in this setting. Delgado and colleagues will analyze prescribing patterns for common conditions, and examine the correlation with state-level opioid overdose and death rates.
Two projects look at transportation as a barrier to accessing health care:
- Exploring Transportation Access as a Mediator of Access to Healthcare and the Social Determinants of Health: A Mixed-Methods Approach – LDI Fellow Whitney Cabey will use high-tech ‘diaries’ of patients’ daily movements to shed light on how transportation affects access to health care, and other necessities. Cabey and colleagues will work with low-income, non-car owning adults to keep time-space diaries using audio recordings and a GPS-enabled smartphone app. The researchers will use this log to identify facilitators of and barriers to care, and movement patterns of subjects living in neighborhoods with varying levels of public transportation access.
- Lyft 4 Primary Care - A Randomized Control Trial Testing Rideshare Transportation for Improving Adult Primary Care Access and Reduced Missed Appointments Among Medicaid Patients in West Philadelphia – LDI Fellow Krisda Chaiyachati will explore whether ride share services can help to address transportation as a barrier to seeking primary care. Collaborating with Lyft, a commercial ride share service, Chaiyachati and colleagues will conduct a trial offering ride share services to Medicaid patients with primary care appointments in West Philadelphia. The pilot’s results will inform a large-scale study on how improved primary care access may reduce patient utilization of high acuity care settings.
Rounding out the full list of researchers and their innovative projects are:
- Erin Aakhus: Cost Transparency in Outpatient Oncology: Barriers and Facilitators
- Scott Damrauer: Independent Living as an Outcome of High-Risk Surgery in the Elderly
- Matthew Grennan: Empirical Analysis of Health System Reimbursement Business-to-Business Bargaining: Technology Adoption Evidence from Hospital Input Markets
- Scott Halpern: Characterization and Throughput of Patients from the Community to the Emergency Dept. to the Intensive Care Unit to the Ward
- Kunhee Kim: The Effect of Regulatory Pressure on Providers' Staffing and Quality: Evidence from Home Health
- Hans-Peter Kohler: The Benefits of Knowledge - Mortality Risks, Mental Health and Life-Cycle Behaviors
- Karen Lasater: Towards a Business Case for Nursing - Do Magnet Hospitals Perform Better on Value Based Purchasing Measures?
- Megan Oberle: Effects of the Monthly Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program Cycle on Appetite Regulation
- Dominic Sisti: Recovering Inside - Ethical Challenges in Correctional Mental Health Care
Awarded annually since 2002, the LDI Pilot Grants program funds both junior and more experienced researchers and has encouraged new collaborations between investigators of different backgrounds and disciplines.
The grantees are selected for their potential to provide new insights into methodological, ethical or policy issues in health and health services. There is more about the Pilot Grants process and eligibility here, and a list of all the funded projects, from this and previous years, here.