Duke's clinical data reach grows with addition of Mayo Clinic, Wake Forest Baptist Health

January 15, 2019

The Mid-South Clinical Data Research Network, of which Duke is a prominent member under the leadership of Schuyler Jones, MD, is a collaborative effort among a group of large health care systems to support and conduct innovative comparative effectiveness research and pragmatic clinical trials.

Now the network is preparing to welcome two new members—the Mayo Clinic, which has locations around the country, and Wake Forest Baptist Health, an affiliate of Wake Forest University, located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Duke researchers: To learn how you can use the STAR CRN and other clinical data research networks to answer your scientific questions, visit our website or email the CDRN team.

The new organization, led by Russell Rothman, MD, MPP, of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, will be known as the STAR CRN, or Stakeholder Technology and Research Clinical Research Network, and will provide access to 14 million electronic health records at member institutions.

The STAR CRN partners now include VUMC, the Vanderbilt Health Affiliated Network, Meharry Medical College, the University of North Carolina, Duke University Medical Center, Health Sciences South Carolina, Wake Forest School of Medicine and Wake Forest Baptist Health, and Mayo Clinic.

The network provides a secure clinical research platform to facilitate use of data from electronic health records, and “engages patients, clinicians and other stakeholders for a broad array of research and learning health system innovation,” Rothman said.

The network, one of several founded in 2014 with funding from the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network, was recently awarded $3.2 million of additional infrastructure funding from the People-Centered Research Foundation (PCRF).

“We’re very thankful to PCRF for this continued funding, and also very pleased to welcome Mayo and Wake to our network. Our aim is to improve the health of entire populations, and this expansion gives our network a new geographical reach, with electronic health record data on over 14 million patients. Together we’re bringing new flexibility, efficiency and power to clinical trials and effectiveness research,” said Rothman, professor of Medicine, Ingram Professor of Integrative and Population Health, and director of the Vanderbilt Center for Health Services Research.

Among recent research based on data from the network have been a study showing that adults with severe obesity had greater initial and sustained weight loss with gastric bypass surgery than with either sleeve gastrectomy or adjustable gastric banding, and a study showing that antibiotic use at younger than 24 months of age was associated with slightly higher body weight at age 5.

Text adapted from this report by Vanderbilt University Medical Center.