To describe the establishment of a national pediatric primary care research network to improve children's health care—Pediatric Research in Office Settings (PROS), and to evaluate the network's progress toward achieving its objectives.
Pediatric practices in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.
Approximately 1400 pediatric practitioners from more than 470 practices.
Beginning in 1986, a core of volunteer pediatrician coordinators from participating American Academy of Pediatrics chapters were identified to oversee local PROS efforts, represent practitioners, and inform the development of proposed research studies. PROS subsequently recruited practitioners from around the country, building a research infrastructure and a system of collaboration between the practitioners, research staff at the AAP, and investigative teams at academic institutions. This PROS collaboration has developed and conducted 10 primary care research studies that have added to the knowledge base of pediatric primary care.
PROS has accomplished two of its initial objectives—development of a structure and process for pediatric practice-based research and provision of research experience to practitioners. Successful and consistent achievement of a third objective—meaningful dissemination of study results to relevant audiences—will depend on meeting several challenges. primary care, health services research, child health, ambulatory care.