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Practice-Based Research Networks

Practice-based research networks

Practice-based research networks (PBRNs) are groups of primary care clinicians and practices working together to answer questions about health and health care priorities and translate findings into clinical practice. Research conducted in practice-based research networks is grounded in clinical care and local community needs and addresses quality improvement and community interests.

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Conventional PBRNs are central to:

  • Advances in primary health care (e.g., use of advance directives, chronic disease self-management)
  • Evolution of practice-based clinical research and identifying common health care concerns
  • Interactions between community stakeholders and academic researchers
  • Developing and implementing health information technology
  • Patient-centered care (goal-oriented vs. problem-oriented)
  • Organizational improvement efforts

Why be a NW HERON site?

NW HERON provides a no-cost way to network with WSU faculty and students and other primary care clinics and practices serving rural, Tribal, and urban populations with similar issues, stressors, and challenges. Other reasons for primary care practices to participate in NW HERON include:

  • Professional development
  • Translation of research into practice
  • Empowered patients and communities
  • Financial support, grants, and contracts
  • Continuous co-learning and information exchange
  • Provider-driven research to address clinic priorities
  • Regional financial investments through grants and contracts
  • Development and dissemination of best practices in our region
  • Shared knowledge and experiences about quality patient care and its improvement
  • Opportunity to host dedicated, bright medical students eager to gain practical experience
  • Versatile research tools used by faculty and students accessible to clinic staff and primary care residents in many medical and non-medical disciplines
  • Enhanced influence with decision-makers and health care stakeholders who can improve local and regional health care through policy changes and legislation
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Joining NW HERON: Memorandum of Understanding

The Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine currently has affiliation agreements with clinical practices across Washington that are interested in partnering with the education of health care professionals. The memorandum of understanding between Washington State University and primary care practices participating in NW HERON builds on these existing affiliation agreements. To join NW HERON, please sign and email the affiliation agreement, or if your clinic is interested but has questions email