Creating a practice-based research network from scratch: Where do i begin?

Holly Hayes, Sandra Burge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Background: As of today, 50% of Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA)-funded Academic Health Centers are engaging community clinicians through the practicebased research network (PBRN) mechanism, which has been identified as a best practice by the CTSA National Leadership. A PBRN is an organization of community clinicians who work together with researchers to answer meaningful questions that will improve patient care. Methods: This paper outlines the steps that were led to success during the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio's journey of developing four PBRNs over 3 years: (1) identifying network directors; (2) deciding who to include; (3) obtaining recruitment lists; (4) sending out mailers; (5) hosting the first PBRN meeting; (6) gaining institutional review board (IRB) approval; (7) launching a simple study; (8) returning the findings; and (9) formalizing the PBRN and moving forward. Results: CTSAs will continue to seek ways to effectively engage community members in the clinical translation process. Conclusions: PBRNs are a promising laboratory for generating research questions directly from clinicians, conducting meaningful research, and then disseminating the findings to the larger community to accelerate positive change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)369-380
Number of pages12
JournalProgress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2012


  • Clinical translational science award
  • Community health participatory research
  • Community-based participatory research
  • Health services research
  • Practice-based research network
  • Translational research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science


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