Evidence-based Practice Center
Research Triangle Institute, in collaboration with the five health professions
schools and the Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research at the University
of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will operate the RTI International*-University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (RTI-UNC) Evidence-based Practice
Center (EPC) for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The RTI-UNC EPC
is headquartered at the North Carolina campus of Research Triangle Institute,
a short distance from the UNC-Chapel Hill campus.
The RTI-UNC EPC will:
- Foster the development and dissemination of systematically developed, authoritative
evidence reports (or technology assessments) on critical health care topics affecting all
- Work with science partners in the public and private sector, which will use these reports
to improve clinical practice; help clinicians, patients and their families, payers and
purchasers, and policymakers and to make better decisions and choices of effective and
appropriate health care technologies; and improve patient and population health and well-being.
- Enhance methodologies for evidence reports and technology assessments.
- Determine the effects of such materials on health care practices and patient outcomes.
The RTI-UNC EPC brings extensive assets from five significant clinical and public health areas:
dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, and public health. It also combines expertise in health
services research and policy analysis with depth of technical skills in all forms of quantitative,
qualitative, and social sciences methodology. The RTI-UNC Center can marshall appropriate and
appreciable resources to study issues on a full range of clinical topics, from prevention and
screening through diagnostic testing to therapy, rehabilitation, counseling, and palliative care.
The EPC is prepared to:
- Carry out rigorous review and critique of the clinical and biomedical research literature in a timely and efficient way.
- Conduct all forms of relevant analysis (such as meta-analysis or cost-effectiveness
- Produce useful materials for and provide technical assistance to all interested parties and provider, patient, and consumer groups.
- Perform small or large projects to evaluate the use, implementation, and impact of
evidence reports and similar tools and products on the delivery, costs, quality, and
outcomes of health care in the United States and elsewhere.
The RTI-UNC Center can call on up to 450 clinical, substantive, and methodologic experts for
studies and activities done for the AHRQ evidence-based practice program, for other public
sector agencies at both the Federal and State levels, and for an array of private sector
organizations such as professional societies and associations, patient and consumer groups,
managed care organizations and insurers, and pharmaceutical firms.
Its Co-Directors are Kathleen Lohr, Ph.D., of RTI and Timothy S. Carey, M.D., M.P.H., of the Sheps
Center at UNC-CH. Key members of the UNC-CH clinical and public health faculty who serve
on a coordinating committee for UNC-CH are Abraham Hartzema, Ph.D., Pharm.D. (School of Pharmacy), Kerry Kilpatrick, Ph.D. (School of
Public Health); Diane Kjervik, R.N., J.D., F.A.A.N. (School of Nursing), and Daniel Shugars,
D.D.S., Ph.D., M.P.H. (School of Dentistry). Core members of the RTI oversight team include
Judith Lessler, Ph.D. (Statistical Research Division), Allen Miedema, Ph.D. (Center for
Economics Research), and George Theologus, Ph.D. (Health and Social Policy Division).
The RTI-UNC Center has numerous collaborators representing important constituencies,
populations, and perspectives on health care. An initial list includes: the American
Pharmaceutical Association; American Society of Health-System Pharmacists; Center for
Clinical Quality Evaluation; Center for Health Services Research in Primary Care, Department of
Veterans Affairs Medical Center (Durham VAMC); Center for Quality of Care Research and
Education at Harvard; IMCARE (the Internal Medicine Center to Advance Research and
Education); Kaiser Foundation Hospitals; Morehouse University Medical Treatment
Effectiveness Center; Paralyzed Veterans of America; The Permanente Medical Group Research
Institute, and Urban Health Institute at Harlem Hospital Center and Columbia College of
Physicians and Surgeons.
Access the RTI-UNC EPC Home Page at:
Meera Viswanathan, Ph.D.
Director, RTI-UNC Evidence-based Practice Center
3040 Cornwallis Road
P.O. Box 12194
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194
Phone: (919) 316-3930
Fax: (919) 541-7384
Timothy S. Carey, M.D., M.P.H.
Professor of Medicine
Director, Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research
Deputy Director, UNC Program on Health Outcomes
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
725 Airport Road, Campus Box 7590
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7590
Phone: (919) 966-7101
Fax: (919) 966-5764
*RTI International is a tradename of Research Triangle Institute.
RTI International-University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (RTI-UNC), Evidence-based Practice Center. Profile, October 2007. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/clinic/epc/rti-unc.htm