Performance Improvement 2011-2012. Is a Process and Outcome Evaluation of the Network for Translational Research Program Feasible and Warranted?

01/01/2012

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) Cancer Imaging Program, within the National Institutes of Health (NIH), commissioned a feasibility study of the Network for Translational Research (NTR): Optical Imaging in Multimodal Platforms program (hereafter referred to as the Network for Translational Research program, or NTR program). The study addressed three objectives:  determine whether a process and outcome evaluation of the program was feasible and warranted; determine what form that evaluation should take and how best to conduct it; and gather baseline data on the NTR program's current functioning. Beginning in 2008, the NTR program funded four multidisciplinary, multi-institutional research centers for a five year period. Each center consists of a team of multidisciplinary investigators from two or more academic institutions and one or more industrial partners. Together, the four centers constitute a network that works to bring multimodality cancer imaging to the clinical environment. The overall mission of the NTR program is to develop, optimize, and validate multimodal molecular imaging platforms and methods for entering single- or multisite clinical trials data for human subjects. The goal of the NTR program is to accelerate the translational research of in vivo multimodal imaging and/or spectroscopic platforms from the laboratory to the preclinical level, and ultimately, to the clinical level.

Evaluators concluded that a process and outcome evaluation of the NTR program is both feasible and warranted. Moreover, they determined that the NTR program had reached a level of maturity to make evaluation possible and appropriate data and data sources were available to support an evaluation. Evaluators also cited an urgent need to learn more about programmatic models for conducting translational technology development research. For the process and outcome evaluation, they recommended a cross-sectional design using the multiple-case study approach and they provided NCI with a logic model to guide the evaluation.

Report Title: Network for Translational Research Program Evaluation Feasibility Study: Final Report
Agency Sponsor: OASPE-OPPS, Office of Planning and Policy Support
Federal Contact: Rosanna Ng, 301-496-5367
Performer: The Madrillon Group, Inc.
Record ID: 9734 (Report issued April 30, 2011)

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