One of the provisions in the nation’s new health law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, authorizes the creation of an autonomous Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) as a nonprofit corporation that is not “an agency or establishment of the U.S. Government.” In an announcement today by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, Palmer College of Chiropractic’s Vice Chancellor for Research and Health Policy Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D., was appointed to the Board of Governors of PCORI.
PCORI is responsible for establishing research priorities and directing a national center focused on patient-centered research. According to the Act, the purpose of PCORI is “to assist patients, clinicians, purchasers, and policy-makers in making informed health decisions by advancing the quality and relevance of evidence” regarding the prevention, treatment, diagnosis and management of diseases and health conditions in various patient populations, then disseminating these patient-centered, outcomes-based research findings.
Nominations for PCORI’s Board of Governors were sought by the Government Accountability Office from healthcare organizations nationwide and members were chosen following a rigorous selection process. The 21-member Board of Governors includes the directors of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), or their designees, plus 19 members appointed by the Comptroller General of the United States, representing patients, healthcare providers, hospitals, drug makers, device manufacturers, insurers, payers, government officials and health experts.
Dr. Goertz’ experience and expertise is in the area of integrative healthcare research. She joined Palmer College of Chiropractic in 2007 as executive director of the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), and in 2008 was named Palmer’s vice chancellor for research and health policy. Before coming to Palmer she was the deputy director of the Samueli Institute in Alexandria, Va. Prior to that she was a Program Officer for the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the National Institutes of Health.
A veteran integrative healthcare researcher, author and speaker, Dr. Goertz has served as a principal investigator or co-principal investigator for a number of large-scale, federally funded research studies, including several projects—one of which is a NCCAM-funded center—currently underway at the PCCR. She leads Palmer’s research efforts at the PCCR, the largest chiropractic research facility in the world, with an annual research budget of approximately $6 million.
“I can think of no one better than Dr. Christine Goertz to play a key role in this new national initiative to set the agenda for patient-centered research, and help direct U.S. efforts in this area,” said Palmer Chancellor Dennis Marchiori, D.C., Ph.D. “Her experience and expertise in both the research and health policy arenas make her perfectly suited for the PCORI Board of Governors.”
Dr. Goertz added, “I am honored to have been selected to the PCORI Board. For the past 20 years my career has focused on the conduct of research that is directly relevant to patient care. The evaluation of patient-centered outcomes and comparative effectiveness is a critical next step towards building an evidence base that is useful to both clinicians and healthcare policymakers.”