MORGANTOWN, W. VA. – The West Virginia Practice-Based Research Network (WVPBRN) recently hosted its sixth Annual WVPBRN Retreat. This day and a half event brought together members from across the 95-site network to connect, collaborate on projects, and discuss research happening across the state.
A networking dinner cruise on Stonewall Jackson Lake in Roanoke, West Virginia opened the retreat. The following morning, after welcome and opening remarks by WVPBRN co-directors, Bill Lewis, M.D., and Jennifer Boyd, PA-C, a review of WVPBRN accomplishments since the 2013 inception of the network were discussed, including completed and active projects, external funding, and practice and policy changes resulting from WVPBRN projects.
“It is always great to gather our members together to highlight the incredibly meaningful work they’re doing, as well as focusing on how much the WVPBRN has grown over the past six years,” said Stacey Whanger, MPH, WVPBRN manager with the West Virginia Clinical and Translational Science Institute.
Other sessions included poster sessions, highlights of recently funded WVPBRN projects, and an opioid panel discussion moderated by David Baltierra, M.D., director of the WVU Rural Family Medicine Residency at the WVU Eastern Campus, and physician with Harpers Ferry Family Medicine. This panel gave participants a chance to discuss strategies and topics related to combatting the opioid epidemic in the primary care setting as well as the challenges that they face in this battle.
During lunch, attendees broke into small groups to discuss and brainstorm effective strategies related to important topics most relevant to healthcare providers in West Virginia including: medication assisted treatment/harm reduction, opioid associated infections, diabetes care and management, cardiovascular disease, social determinants of health, and rural healthcare disparities.
The event concluded with a live demo of the WVPBRN Design Studio, a new initiative that gives clinicians across the state a chance to receive expert study design advice in order to turn their ideas generated in the clinic into actionable research projects.
“The West Virginia Practice-Based Research Network is one of WVCTSI’s greatest strengths,” said Sally Hodder, M.D., WVCTSI director and associate vice president for clinical and translational science at WVU. “The continued engagement and collaboration of this network will give us the best chance to make a meaningful difference and create a brighter future for our state.”
WVCTSI is funded by an IDeA Clinical and Translational grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (5U54GM104942-03) to support the mission of building clinical and translational research infrastructure and capacity to impact health disparities in West Virginia.
West Virginia Clinical and Translational Science Institute