Coordination Role of ASPE
The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), under delegation of authority by the Secretary of HHS, coordinates across relevant federal health programs to build data capacity for patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR), including administering the Office of the Secretary’s PCOR Trust Fund (OS-PCORTF). This coordination involves partnerships with agency leaders, scientists, research programs, and data stewards to develop and implement an extensive array of projects and consortiums that expand data capacity to support PCOR studies.
ASPE regularly convenes HHS agency leaders to identify priorities for projects that build data capacity for PCOR. Through this coordination, ASPE and agency leaders support HHS research programs and generate new scientific evidence that helps to inform decisions about patient health outcomes.
In addition, ASPE fosters interagency working groups that bring together Federal researchers and research networks, program officials, and data experts to conduct collaborative projects which are designed to build data capacity for patient-centered research. ASPE regularly convenes project teams comprised of Federal researchers for administrative and educational meetings to discuss progress towards building data capacity, share outputs from projects, stimulate collaboration, disseminate information tools, and maintain a strategic plan.
HHS Leadership Council for the OS-PCORTF
The OS-PCORTF Leadership Council, which is comprised of senior career HHS agency leaders, is charged with helping ASPE set priorities for the OS-PCORTF. The Leadership Council also works with ASPE to guide the OS-PCORTF’s funding opportunities for data infrastructure investments (e.g., launch of solicitations, proposal review process, and recommendations for funding).
PCORTF Agency Advisory Committee (PAC)
The PAC is comprised of scientists and subject matter experts who are active and well-versed in research data efforts and serve as a liaison to their respective HHS agencies. PAC members support the implementation of the OS-PCORTF Strategic Plan (2020-2029), including facilitating collaborations for new data projects and dissemination of products produced by the OS-PCORTF portfolio.
ASPE’s management and oversight of the OS-PCORTF portfolio reflects a transparent and collaborative approach to the solicitation, funding, monitoring, and evaluation of projects as well as the dissemination of findings, products, and resources. Generally, ASPE launches a funding opportunity in the spring; intradepartmental teams develop and submit concept proposals, the strongest of which are then developed into full project proposals. Following peer and programmatic review, and in discussion with the Leadership Council, funding decisions are made and submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in the fall. ASPE actively monitors and evaluates the projects in its portfolio (as well as the portfolio as a whole) to ensure that these investments advance data capacity and infrastructure integral to the success of patient-centered outcomes research.