MedStar Healthcare Delivery Research Network | MedStar Health

About the MedStar Healthcare Delivery Research Network

research
The MedStar Healthcare Delivery Research Network was formed in 2010 as the catalytic driving network to impact how MedStar Health clinically re-engineers the delivery of care to achieve value, quality, and patient satisfaction. To achieve this goal, the Network conducts patient-centered research on the delivery of care that can be applied and disseminated to improve the health of the general population, including those served by the MedStar Health System. 


Since its inception, the MedStar Healthcare Delivery Research Network has grown to realize consistent and exponential growth. The Network received several prominent national grants including being selected as one of 13 prime organizations in the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Accelerating Change and Transformation in Organizations and Networks (ACTION) network.  Many of the awarded MedStar Healthcare Delivery Research Network projects have informed national standards and/or policy for care delivery. Through the Network, MedStar Health, a real-world learning health system, has taken an active role in being the healthcare system where the future of healthcare is created, implemented, and disseminated to the rest of the nation.

MedStar Center for Health Economics, Systems, and
Policy Research


Conducting research on healthcare organization,
delivery, payment, and costs.
MedStar Center for Health Equity Research

The multidisciplinary home for health equity research, scholarship, and community engagement.
MedStar National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare

Generating and disseminating new knowledge about how critical healthcare challenges are identified, tracked, and addressed in order to better support clinicians and enhance patient safety.
Implementation Science Research

Improving the uptake and utilization of evidence-based research and integrate it into
real-world practice.
MedStar Institute for Quality and Safety

Designing, implementing, and testing innovations to improve the future of health for all Americans.
MedStar-Georgetown Surgical Outcomes Research Center

Contributing to the science on disparities in surgical oncology care among vulnerable populations including older adults, ethnic and racial minorities, those with comorbidities, and persons in rural settings.

MedStar Center for Health Economics, Systems, and Policy Research

The Center for Health Economics, Systems, & Policy Research focuses on healthcare organization, delivery, payment, and costs. It includes analyses of healthcare markets, health policy, health care delivery models, outcome measurement, social determinants of health, and transitions across healthcare settings. The center also examines the effects of global budgeting payment reform on healthcare delivery. Research areas of focus:

  1. Total costs of care 
  2. Healthcare for Medicare and Medicaid populations 
  3. Hospital Utilization 
  4. Health Care Quality 
  5. Transitions of Care 

MedStar Center for Health Equity Research

The MedStar Center for Health Equity Research is a multidisciplinary home for health equity research, scholarship, and community engagement. Established by the MedStar Health Research Institute, the vison of the Center is a community in which all individuals (regardless of factors such as race/ethnicity, gender, age, socioeconomic status or geographic location) have the same opportunity to achieve optimal health.

The mission of the Center is to advance health, particularly for underserved populations, by conducting collaborative research and providing education to empower, inform, and transform health-- for patients and families, providers, communities, and the health system. Acknowledging that health equity is complex, multifactorial and requires expertise and perspectives from multiple disciplines, the Center brings together a diverse team of researchers, clinicians, and community partners collaborating to achieve a true community-engaged research approach. The Center and its members are actively engaged in research to directly address health disparities, health inequity, and the social determinants of health across multiple domains. This includes digital health, patient safety, patient and family engagement, diagnostic error, diabetes and other chronic disease management, maternal and child health, and behavioral health.
The MedStar Center for Health Equity Research also leverages partnerships with multiple community-based organizations, local and state health departments, and with academic partners including the Georgetown University Racial Justice Institute, and the Georgetown Health Justice Alliance.

MedStar National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare

Applying human factors to healthcare reduces medical errors and allows clinicians to deliver better care to their patients. In practice, human factors boost work processes, enhances patient safety, reduces inefficiencies and improves quality. The MedStar National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare conducts rigorous research and applies scientifically grounded principles to study and improve the interrelationship between clinicians, the equipment and processes they use and the environment in which they work with the patient as a central focus.

Research areas of focus:

  1. Patient Safety
  2. Efficiency
  3. Quality

Learn more about MedStar National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare’s current and past research projects.

Connected Care/Telehealth

The MedStar Telehealth Innovation Center (MTIC) within the MedStar Institute for Innovation was critical to the exponential expansion of connected care at MedStar Health, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic response. MTIC worked in close collaboration with MHRI/the Human Factors Center and others across the system to transform care delivery—and research the related data and insights.

Our teams also work together to advance health care more broadly by publishing related research and insights, and expanding related exploration and impact through grants and educational offerings:

  • Review the “MTIC in the News” listing for early research examples, covering topics such as leveraging on-demand telehealth for patient screening; integrating telehealth into the Emergency Department workflow; developing visualization dashboards to enhance situation awareness of telehealth initiatives; using chatbots; and offering a left without being seen on-demand telehealth follow-up program.

  • Learn more about the Connected Care Access, Research, Equity (CARE) & Safety Consortium, made possible through funding from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Representing one of the largest data sharing and analysis efforts of its kind across three leading health systems, the Connected CARE & Safety Consortium examines how telehealth technology impacts U.S. primary care.

  • Explore the MedStar Health Telehealth Fellowship overview, which is a collaboration among MTIC and MedStar Health emergency medicine residency programs that includes opportunities for research involvement.

Implementation Science Research

The goal of the implementation science program at the MedStar Health Research Institute is to improve the uptake and utilization of evidence-based research and integrate it into real-world practice. We target research to understand not just potential efficacy of health promotion interventions, but also seek to understand how multi-level influences and context affect intervention utilization and to identify strategies to increase evidence-based practice. We use a mixed-methodological approach grounded in relevant models, theories, or frameworks to guide data collection and analysis.

Research areas of focus:

  1. Technology-delivered interventions
  2. Multi-level studies

MedStar Institute for Quality and Safety

The MedStar Institute for Quality and Safety is a leader in the science, innovation, and discovery leading to better patient quality, experience, and safety of healthcare across the continuum of health care. Along with the MedStar Institute for Quality and Safety Patient and Family Advisors and MedStar Health partners, the institute designs, implements, and tests innovations to improve the future of health for all Americans.

Research areas of focus:

  1. Safety
  2. Diagnostic Errors
  3. Quality
Learn more about MedStar Institute for Quality and Safety current and past research projects.

MedStar-Georgetown Surgical Outcomes Research Center

Contributing to the science on disparities in surgical oncology care among vulnerable populations including older adults, ethnic and racial minorities, those with comorbidities, and persons in rural settings. Learn more about MedStar Georgetown Surgical Outcomes Center

Health economics and aging research (H.E.A.R.) institute

senior couple
The MedStar Health Economics and Aging Research (H.E.A.R.) Institute is part of the MedStar Health Research Institute, located at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital. The mission of H.E.A.R. is to support MedStar Health as a laboratory for innovation and best practices in quality geriatric care. The H.E.A.R. Institute facilitates and fosters collaboration with MedStar Health practice sites to develop, implement, evaluate, and disseminate innovative models of geriatric care delivery.

H.E.A.R. Institute team members

  • Erin Giovannetti, Scientific Director

  • Derek DeLia

  • Dana Frank

  • Daniel Wilhite, Research Assistant

Research topics

Research at the H.E.A.R. Institute falls into three strategic focus areas.

Putting the patient at the center

Three out of four older adults are managing two or more chronic conditions and this population accounts for 93% of Medicare spending. Older adults with multiple chronic conditions and their family caregivers face the most challenges navigating the complex health care system of multiple clinicians, medications, and care settings. We leverage the diverse patient population and rich data infrastructure at MedStar Health to study how innovations in treatment and management of multiple chronic conditions can be most effectively deployed across a wide variety of care settings. The H.E.A.R. Institute research also focuses on how shared decision making and goal-setting can be used to improve the quality of care provided to older adults ensuring that health care addresses what matters most to them. Notable programs include:

  • Collaborative Care Center at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital: The center opened in 2021 and provides integrated specialty and behavioral health care to patients with congestive heart failure, diabetes, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The center aims to reduce hospital length of stay and readmissions by providing intensive chronic disease management and education as patients make the transition from the hospital back to the community. The H.E.A.R. Institute is helping to develop and evaluate this new approach to delivering care.

  • Demonstration of person-driven outcomes for an age-friendly health system: In partnership with the National Committee for Quality Assurance, the H.E.A.R. Institute is engaged in a national, multi-site demonstration of goal-based outcome measurement. This health care intervention allows older adults and their family members to set goals with clinicians based on their own priorities and measure progress on those goals. Click here to learn more.

Economic analysis on the “total cost of care”

Costs for patients and families are rising and more family members are dropping out of the workforce to care for aged loved ones. Spending for Medicare alone, in the absence of change, will account for 8 percent of gross domestic product by 2035. Radical health care reform is required to counter these trends, including a deeper analysis of inefficiencies in our health care system and the economic impact on patients and family members. H.E.A.R. is engaged in several multi-year research programs that seek to reduce not just Medicare costs but also the costs to patients and family members. Notable programs include:

  • MedStar house call program: This innovative model of providing at-home care to housebound older adults is part of a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid National Independence at Home Demonstration and early results show substantial savings to Medicare.

  • Center for successful aging at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital: This interdisciplinary geriatric care program uses a risk stratification model to identify and predict high-risk patients, as well as prioritize the management of their care in order to prevent worse outcomes. The H.E.A.R. Institute is engaged in an evaluation of the Center’s model of care and enhancing this model for dissemination across the wider MedStar Health network and beyond. Learn more about this program here.

Delivering equitable care that addresses the social determinants of health

Located in the greater Washington, D.C., and Baltimore areas, MedStar Health serves one of the most culturally diverse populations of the United States, and our award-winning researchers have successfully conducted numerous studies involving underserved and minority populations. We know that addressing health disparities involves understanding the needs of the community beyond those typically addressed in the medical care system, such as housing, nutrition, transportation, and safety. The H.E.A.R. Institute will facilitate partnerships with health equity and community-based participatory research experts to advance our understanding of how to best to deliver cost-effective, high-quality, and equitable care to all aging patients in community-based settings.

Support us

Sustainability is the key to success. Communities need sustainable health in order to thrive. Health systems need sustainable models of care in order to effectively serve their patients. MedStar Health believes that the H.E.A.R. Institute community-based research will help achieve both of these goals, as well as identify opportunities to lower costs while achieving better health outcomes.

The missing link is bringing the community, research, and expert health care resources together to identify these solutions and ways to sustain them over time. The synergy of these diverse partners will spark opportunities and resources we could not have imagined otherwise. This work will pay for itself in the long run. Please consider “paying it forward” to make this vision, in honor of Dr. Dana Frank, a reality. Learn more about philanthropy at MedStar Health here.

MedStar Health seeks to raise $2 million in philanthropic investments to build the H.E.A.R. Institute. These crucial start-up funds will help build the team with supporting research scientists and analysts with expertise in bioinformatics, biostatistics, community-based research, health economics, and implementation science. The start-up funds are necessary both to begin this critical work and secure additional grant funding for the future.