Definitions of practice-based research from the Mayo Clinic Health System Practice-Based Research Network (MCHS PBRN):
- Standard version. Practice-based research is a systematic, rigorous and collaborative inquiry by teams of health care providers, community experts, scientists and other stakeholders into the systems, methods, policies, programmatic applications and population-level outcomes of health care practice. These inquiries lead to the discovery of new information, generation of new ideas and implementation of innovative solutions to the existing paradigms of care and ultimately result in improved care for patients, populations and communities.
- Abbreviated version. Practice-based research is an inquiry into health care practice in order to improve care for patients, populations and communities.
Elements of practice-based research
Practice-based research examines and evaluates health care that occurs in the "real world" — often community-based primary care clinics or hospitals. It tries to answer health care questions and translate research findings into practices that are relevant to and can improve the health of local community members.
Types of research may include, but are not limited to:
- Cost and financing of health care
- Access to and use and delivery of health care
- Health care quality and outcomes
- Health equity and issues of health disparity
- Social determinants of health
- Coordination of care across the spectrum of health-related services and providers
- Patient-oriented or disease-specific research as it relates to health systems and health delivery
Methods may include, but are not limited to, those used in these disciplines or types of research:
- Traditional epidemiology
- Clinical trials research
- Quasi-experimental design
- Comparative effectiveness research
- Implementation sciences
- Qualitative research
In general, practice-based research does not include early translational research, discovery science, basic science studies, and clinical trials of pharmacological agents or investigational devices.