Two OneFlorida Citizen Scientists Receive Scholarships to Attend PCORI Annual Meeting

Carlos Maeztu and Nadine Zemon, two participants in OneFlorida’s Citizen Scientist Program, have earned Patient Scholarships to attend the 2018 Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. The theme of the 2018 meeting, which will take place from Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, is “From Evidence to Impact: Putting What Works into Action.”

PCORI’s Annual Meeting is designated as a “Patients Included” event, meaning that patients and caregivers are included as full participants in the event’s planning, and that all necessary accommodations are provided to facilitate their involvement. Patients, caregivers, and patient representatives offer valuable perspectives, so PCORI selects 40 Patient Scholarship recipients each year to help applicants from these groups attend the event. Each Patient Scholarship covers the recipient’s travel and hotel expenses, as well as a per diem allowance.

“Attending PCORI’s Annual Meeting will give me the opportunity to learn more about the organization and its resources, and to network with other stakeholders. Thanks to my Citizen Scientist training, I have a solid foundation for exploring ways to promote community engagement in patient-centered research,” said Zemon. “I look forward to telling my Citizen Scientist teammates about my experience at the meeting. I’m confident that it will help us fulfill our mission of creating a bridge between researchers and the community.”

Patient Scholarship recipients are selected for their involvement with patient-centered outcomes research and related initiatives. Additional criteria are the applicant’s potential to elevate underrepresented communities, and to diversify geographic representation at the meeting.

Other scholarship criteria include the applicant’s prior involvement with PCORI and/or PCORI-funded projects, previous PCORI Annual Meeting attendance and scholarship receipt, and the applicant’s identification as a patient, caregiver, or patient representative.

Maeztu, who has worked as a patient advisor in several capacities with OneFlorida and the Health eHeart Alliance over the past few years, says he hopes attending the PCORI conference will help him clarify the goals and roles of PCORI and the more recently established Patient-Centered Research Foundation (PCRF).

“I find the recent changes in the overall structure of PCORI and the Foundation somewhat confusing,” said Maeztu. “Having a good understanding of the goals and objectives of each of these organizations is crucial to being an effective patient advisor.”

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