New Research and Innovation Center Focuses on Health Services, Care Delivery


The center was recently launched by Columbia School of Nursing.

Columbia University School of Nursing (CUSN) in New York has established a research center on health care systems. The goal of the Center for Healthcare Delivery Research and Innovation (HDRI) is to expand access to high-quality, safe health care in the United States and around the world.1

Lusine Poghosyan, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN, was named executive director of the new center.1,2 Dr A CUSN professor, and professor of health policy and management at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health (MSPH), Poghosyan is an award-winning, internationally recognized research in health services. Her research background lies in primary care organizations, workforce, teamwork, and quality of patient care.2

Other faculty and fellows affiliated with the center include scholars from CUSN, and MSPH, as well as ColumbiaDoctors, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, and other recognized institutions from the United States, Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Additionally, HDRI is providing training for 5 PhD students and 2 postdoctoral fellows, who are studying care for high-cost, high-needs patients, and patients with dementia and multiple chronic conditions. These students and fellows are also training to provide delivery of mental health services in primary care and community health centers.1

“Our research [at HDRI] focuses on how to build effective health-care teams—communities in their own right—to take care of patients in critical situations and how to improve work environments in health-care organizations to promote and support teamwork and ultimately patient care,” said Poghosyan, in a prepared statement issued by Columbia. “We also study how to optimally utilize the growing workforce of nurse practitioners (NPs) in primary care to ensure patients have access to timely, high-quality primary care.”1

According to Poghosyan, This type of research is critical to expanding access to care.1

“The demand for primary care services in the US is increasing exponentially, and the NP workforce, [which is] expected to almost double in near future, can help address this demand. But several barriers at the federal, state, and organizational level limit NPs’ ability to provide primary care. Our research seeks to identify these policies and barriers, particularly in how they relate to patient care and outcomes,” she added.1

Investigators at HDRI are currently looking at racial disparities in care among people with dementia who receive care from NP practices.

“Little is known about how to optimize primary care practices employing NPs, which often lack the organization and structure needed to ensure continuity of care and better outcomes for minority people with dementia,” Poghosyan said. “And there’s little guidance on how to improve access to community resources to help.”1

The center’s research is intended to help answer questions about optimizing primary care practices employing NPs and guide policy changes to support the nursing workforce, according to Poghosyan.1

Other projects underway include a program to train nurse scholars on comparative and cost-effectiveness research, and a study of social networks in medical homes and their impact on patient care and patient outcomes.1

HDRI will also help investigators obtain research funding, and senior faculty will mentor and guide junior researchers as they develop their own research programs, giving them support needed for them to be successful at Columbia Nursing and obtain tenure.1

“The spotlight has never shone brighter on nurses as leaders. HDRI will help build the evidence we need to support the nursing workforce, and nurses themselves, while expanding access to high-quality health care,” says Lorraine Frazier, PhD, the dean of Columbia University School of Nursing and the senior vice president of Columbia University Irving Medical Center, in a prepared statement.1

Research at the center is currently funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research, the National Institute on Aging, the National Institutes of Health, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, as well as other organizations.1


  1. Columbia University School of Nursing launches center for healthcare delivery research and innovation [news release]. May 20, 2021; Columbia School of Nursing. Accessed May 21, 2021. [email]
  2. Lusine Poghosyan, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN: Overview. Columbia School of Nursing. Accessed May 21, 2021.
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