Understanding enterprise data warehouses to support clinical and translational research

Thomas R. Campion, Catherine K. Craven, David A. Dorr, Boyd M. Knosp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Objective: Among National Institutes of Health Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) hubs, adoption of electronic data warehouses for research (EDW4R) containing data from electronic health record systems is nearly ubiquitous. Although benefits of EDW4R include more effective, efficient support of scientists, little is known about how CTSA hubs have implemented EDW4R services. The goal of this qualitative study was to understand the ways in which CTSA hubs have operationalized EDW4R to support clinical and translational researchers. Materials and Methods: After conducting semistructured interviews with informatics leaders from 20 CTSA hubs, we performed a directed content analysis of interview notes informed by naturalistic inquiry. Results: We identified 12 themes: organization and data; oversight and governance; data access request process; data access modalities; data access for users with different skill sets; engagement, communication, and literacy; service management coordinated with enterprise information technology; service management coordinated within a CTSA hub; service management coordinated between informatics and biostatistics; funding approaches; performance metrics; and future trends and current technology challenges. Discussion: This study is a step in developing an improved understanding and creating a common vocabulary about EDW4R operations across institutions. Findings indicate an opportunity for establishing best practices for EDW4R operations in academic medicine. Such guidance could reduce the costs associated with developing an EDW4R by establishing a clear roadmap and maturity path for institutions to follow. Conclusions: CTSA hubs described varying approaches to EDW4R operations that may assist other institutions in better serving investigators with electronic patient data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1352-1358
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Medical Informatics Association
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020


  • CTSA
  • Data warehouse
  • EHR
  • Secondary use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics


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