First Learning Health System Pilot Projects Funded at Columbia University


Two projects have been given the green light to explore new technology and practices that have the potential to save lives and reduce health care inequity through the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research’s Strategic Priorities Pilot Award – Learning Health System. A collaboration with the Columbia University Learning Health System initiative, the Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC), ColumbiaDoctors, and the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science (Columbia Engineering) the program supports proposals that apply a learning health system approach that integrates informatics, research, and clinical practice programs to solve real-world problems.

The 2022-2023 awardees are:

Development and Implementation of a Novel Machine Learning Algorithm for Early Detection of Sepsis in Hospitalized Patients

Principal Investigator: Carri Chan, PhD, MS, Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Management Program, Columbia Business School
Co-Investigators: Jason Adelman, MD, MS, Medicine and Chief Patient Safety Officer & Associate Chief Quality Officer, Columbia University Irving Medical Center/NewYork-Presbyterian, and Benjamin Ranard, MD, MSHP, Medicine – Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine

Piloting a Pediatric Equity and Quality Dashboard and Implementation Roadmap in the Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital Emergency Department

Principal Investigator: Katherine Nash, MD, MHS, Pediatrics – Critical Care and Hospital Medicine (Principal Investigator)
Co-Investigators: John Babineau, MD, Emergency Medicine - Pediatric Emergency Medicine; and Sandhya Brachio, MD, Pediatrics - Neonatology and Perinatology; Joan Bregstein, MD, Emergency Medicine - Pediatric Emergency Medicine; Dodi Meyer, MD, Pediatrics - Child and Adolescent Health; and Katherine Schlosser Metitiri, MD, MA, Pediatrics – Critical Care and Hospital Medicine

The Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (Irving Institute), home to Columbia University’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) Program hub, is one of over 60 medical research institutions across the nation that work together to speed the translation of research discovery into improved patient care. Its strength as an institute on the Columbia campus is serving as a trusted convener, bringing together multidisciplinary stakeholders across the University and community to address new and complex public health issues and reduce barriers to translational science.

In 2017, the Irving Institute applied its collaborative interdisciplinary initiative model to the emergent national opioid crisis, a model which it published in Journal of Clinical and Translational Science (JCTS) to share best practices with other academic medical centers (PMC7103466). Since then, the Institute has applied this model to the Learning Health System initiative and other strategic priorities, conducting landscape analyses, cross-campus brainstorm sessions and symposium, and pilot awards, and establishing sustainable teams to carry forward each initiative.

The Institute formalized this approach under its Strategic Priorities Pilot Award Program, ensuring the ability to support strategic initiatives across the medical center and Columbia campus as they arise. The program allows for deployment of institutional funds to address emerging strategic priorities and the Irving Institute to serve as the hub for new partnerships and sponsors. It is designed to flexibly respond to pressing institutional, local, and national needs and priorities and jump-start timely research collaborations. The Learning Health System Pilot Award is the first of these Strategic Priorities Pilot Awards.

Muredach Reilly, MBBCh, MSCE and Director of the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, said that “through learning health system approaches we can accelerate the translational impact of our innovative discoveries to transform the quality of healthcare for our communities.”  

CTSA Program In Action Goals
Goal 1: Train and Cultivate the Translational Science Workforce
Goal 4: Innovate Processes to Increase the Quality and Efficiency of Translational Research, Particularly of Multisite Trials
Goal 5: Advance the Use of Cutting-Edge Informatics