Skip to main content
<p>Quick turnaround research on the hottest topics of the day related to health policy, medical professionalism, medical education, and physician practice –is the goal of the Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research (CHPPR), recently created as an innovative think tank at the Indiana University School of Medicine and Riley Hospital for Children.</p>

New Think Tank Tackles Health Policy and Professionalism Issues

Established as an independent objective source of health information, the new center translates research into practice in a timeframe that satisfies the needs of policymakers and other decision makers.

Earlier this year, the new center published the results of a national survey of physician opinion on national health insurance in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The largest survey ever of American physicians’ opinions on health-care financing, it found that 59 percent of doctors support government legislation to establish national health insurance while only 32 percent oppose it. A similar survey conducted by the IU researchers in 2002 found 49 percent of physicians supporting national health insurance and 40 percent opposing it.

In addition to surveys, CHPPR also focuses on summarizing existing knowledge and research, evaluating the success or failure of potential solutions. For example, research from the center related to pharmaceutical industry interactions with physicians in training, published in the journal Pediatrics, was prominently cited in a recent report by the Association of American Medical Colleges which urged all medical schools and teaching hospitals to adopt policies that prohibit drug industry gifts and services to physicians, faculty, residents and students, and to curtail the involvement of industry in continuing medical education activities.

CHPPR is establishing the capacity to rapidly deploy national phone and mail surveys. Results of these types of CHPPR studies can be communicated directly to decision makers as well as disseminated through the traditional channels of peer-reviewed publications and professional meetings.

Aaron Carroll, M.D., M.S., associate professor of pediatrics and a Regenstrief Institute affiliated scientist, directs CHPPR. Among his recent work are studies relating to physician malpractice, pharmaceutical industry influence in medical education, and physician support of health care financing reform.

Ronald Ackermann, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of medicine and a Regenstrief Institute affiliated scientist, is the deputy director. His research has focused on the development and evaluation of “partnered” approaches for preventing and managing chronic health conditions, especially diabetes and physician support of national health insurance. He is currently a Robert Wood Johnson Physician Faculty Scholar and serves as an expert advisor for programs of the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health, the American Diabetes Association, and the Center for Health Care Strategies.