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2015 HSR&D/QUERI National Conference Abstract

2003 — Methods, Materials, and Ethics of Community-Engaged and Participatory Action Research in VHA: Learning from Ongoing Veteran-Researcher Collaborations

TRUE G, Core Investigator, Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion; Davidson L, OIF Veteran; Director of Veterans Affairs, Chester County, PA; Facundo R, OIF Veteran: Coordinator of Veteran Student Services, Portland State University; Ono S, Core Investigator, Center to Improve Veteran Involvement in Care;

Workshop Objectives:
With the growing emphasis on engaging Veterans as key stakeholders in efforts to improve health care quality and delivery, VHA investigators in health services research and implementation science are looking to community-engaged (CEnR) and participatory action research (PAR) methods. This workshop will provide guidance on navigating the practical and ethical issues that arise in conducting CEnR and PAR in VHA context, as well tools for incorporating CEnR and PAR into VHA research.

Two HSRandD investigators and two OEF/OIF Veterans will share insights and lessons learned from their ongoing collaborations on research using photovoice methods and an initiative to develop infrastructure for Veteran engaged research, including a Veteran advisory group. Topics will include how to identify individual and community partners; best practices for developing and sustaining partnerships; special considerations for human subjects protection; aligning research goals with needs of Veteran-community and VHA operational partners; and meaningful involvement of Veteran partners in all stages of the research. Two OEF/OIF Veterans who have partnered with VHA investigators and are employed in positions where they often serve as bridges between Veteran communities and VHA will speak to the concerns and experiences of Veterans as collaborators in this setting. Workshop attendees will participate in a guided review and discussion of sample documents from VHA research and Veteran-engagement projects, as well as learn about novel ways to present and disseminate findings to key audiences and expand reach to Veteran communities. An annotated guide to additional resources on CEnR and PAR theory and methods will be distributed.

Target Audience:
This workshop will be useful to new and established investigators and operational partners engaged in research, implementation, and/or quality improvement. The workshop will be of particular interest to investigators interested in learning more about how and why to incorporate principles of CEnR and PAR into their VA research and implementation work, and to leadership interested in engaging Veterans in improving access to and quality of VA care.

Assumed Audience Familiarity with Topic:
Familiarity with research design and methods is helpful, but not necessary.