PCORI Help Center

What are the differences between Scientific Reviewers, Patient Reviewers, and other Stakeholder Reviewers?

PCORI’s Scientific Reviewer community includes members of the health and healthcare research communities, with technical or specialized research backgrounds.

PCORI’s Stakeholder Reviewer community includes patients, caregivers, clinicians, policy makers, and other healthcare system stakeholders. PCORI defines stakeholder reviewer communities as follows:

  • Patients: Persons with current or past experience of illness or injury, family members or other unpaid caregivers of patients, or members of advocacy organizations that represent patients or caregivers.
  • Clinicians: Providers of health care in a clinical setting, including physicians, nurses, physician assistants, rehabilitative professionals, pharmacists, mental healthcare providers, complementary and alternative healthcare providers, and professional societies serving clinicians.
  • Researchers: Those who conduct clinical research, including investigators or funders of research and organizations or associations representing the research community.
  • Purchasers: Those who purchase health benefits for employees and their dependents, including individual businesses as well as local, state, regional, and national business groups, coalitions that represent businesses, and health coalitions.
  • Payers: Those who function as financial intermediaries in the health system, including private insurers and public insurers, and organizations representing insurers, such as America’s Health Insurance Plans.
  • Industry: Companies that design, invest in, or manufacture diagnostics, devices, pharmaceuticals, electronic records systems, and mobile apps, and organizations representing the life sciences industry, such as the Advanced Medical Technologies Association.
  • Hospitals and Health Systems: Organizations where care is delivered, including public and private hospitals and health systems, urgent care centers, retail health clinics, and community health centers, and organizations representing these facilities.
  • Policy Makers: Those who help craft public policy at any level of government, including federal, state, and local government officials; federal, state, and local units of government; and organizations that represent policy makers.
  • Training Institutions: Those that deliver health professional education include public and private universities and colleges, individuals affiliated with the delivery or administration of health professional education, and trade or professional associations representing these institutions, organizations, and individuals.

PCORI assigns Scientific Reviewers, as well as Patient and Stakeholder Reviewers, to every application for online review. PCORI recognizes that some Reviewers have multiple roles, including as patients or caregivers, and asks that Reviewers distinguish the Reviewer type with which they primarily identify.

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