PECARN is the first federally funded pediatric emergency medicine research network in the US. They conduct high-priority, multi-institutional research on the prevention and management of acute illnesses and injuries in children and adolescents. The current PECARN network includes six nodes, each with three hospital Emergency Departments (ED) and a Pre-Hospital Research Node with three EMS agencies. The hospitals represent over 1 million discrete ED visits a year.

Richard Ruddy, MD is the PI of one of the nodes, the Hospitals of the Midwest Emergency Research Node (HOMERUN) that includes University of Cincinnati/Cincinnati Children’s, Washington University/St. Louis Children’s and Medical College of Wisconsin/Milwaukee Children’s Hospital. It is funded through 2019. At Cincinnati Children’s, Lynn Babcock, MD, MS is the ED site PI. The node’s Emergency Medical Services (pre-hospital) site is at Cincinnati Children’s and Hamilton Schwartz, MD, MEd is the scientific advisor. In addition to contributing as one of the top enrolling sites in PECARN, Cincinnati Children’s has been a model for its data quality (nodal Administrator – Nicole McClanahan) and contributed to the development of new PEM investigators through the Mentoring Program – Jennifer Reed, MD (current K23), Todd Florin, MD, MSCE (UC – KL2) and Tara Rhine, MD, MS (new UC – KL2) scholars.

There have been over 75 publications and an outstanding track record on funded and completed grants. Some of the current active projects include:

  • Emergency Department Screen for Teens at Risk for Suicide (ED-STARS) – Jackie Grupp-Phelan MD, MPH is co-I on this study which is a screening study for mental health issues around suicidality amongst 14 sites funded by NIMH.
  • Acute Gastroenteritis-Impact of Emergency Department Probiotic Treatment of Pediatric Gastroenteritis – PI David Schnadower, MD, St. Louis Children’s Hospital, Site PI – Seema Bhatt MD, MS – an RCT using probiotics in acute gastroenteritis in healthy children three months to four years of age funded by NICHD.
  • PECARN Registry: Improving the Quality of Pediatric Emergency Care Using an Electronic Health Record Registry and Clinician Feedback. PI – Elizabeth Alpern, MD, MSCE, Lurie Children’s Hospital and co-I – Evaline Alessandrini MD, MSCE, Cincinnati Children’s. This includes 7 EDs and has monthly downloads of ED medical records using discrete fields and natural language processing to give each ED and ED provider feedback across ED Quality Measures (Alessandrini 2011) and was funded by AHRQ.