Seven U.S. Medical Centers To Create First Collaborative Electronic Database of HIV/AIDS Treatment Results
Seven U.S. medical centers through a federal grant announced Tuesday will build the first collaborative electronic database of HIV/AIDS treatment results in an effort to determine the effectiveness of therapies for HIV-positive people, the New York Times reports. According to the Times, the seven centers -- the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where the project is based; Case Western Reserve University; Harvard University; Johns Hopkins University; University of California-San Diego; University of California-San Francisco; and University of Washington -- already have HIV/AIDS treatment databases, and this project will link them together to help researchers and physicians compare the effectiveness of commonly used HIV/AIDS treatments, the Times reports. Michael Saag, principal investigator for the project, said that the $2.45 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease and the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute will allow five more centers to be added to the network. Through the program, HIV-positive people will be asked to answer questions at waiting room kiosks about symptoms, medication adherence and other topics. Physicians will validate the information by asking participants about their answers and collecting blood samples. According to Saag, it is important to ensure that data are accurate and that measures are being taken to validate the pooled data. The project will keep confidential the identities of the 15,000 HIV-positive people in the program, the Times reports. Saag said he hopes the program will lead to more collaborative treatment networks for other diseases (Altman, New York Times, 10/10).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.