News & Events

CERTAIN is Hiring!

CERTAIN is hiring a Project Coordinator Lead. The areas of responsibility of this position fall into these categories: 

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A New Conversation in Appendicitis: Appendectomy or “Antibiotics First”

Appendicitis is the most common reason for emergency abdominal surgery—approximately 300,000 people undergo an appendectomy in the US each year. The advent of laparoscopic surgery has made the procedure safer and reduced complications. However, despite the safety and efficacy of appendectomy, there is still some uncertainty in the healthcare community around the necessity of appendectomy for managing appendicitis.

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Making Data Meaningful: Designing Visual Dashboards for Patient-Reported Outcomes

Patient-Reported Outcomes (PROs) are becoming an important part of research and quality improvement projects aimed at improving healthcare. PROs capture how a patient feels about their symptoms, health, healing, and quality of life. That information, combined with traditional clinical data, gives doctors a better understanding of their patients’ outcomes and the quality of care they provide.

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Safe and Sound Collaborative Improving Care for Children with Appendicitis

Appendicitis is the most common surgical emergency in children, and computed tomography (CT) imaging is a routine and accurate way to diagnose the condition. But medical tests like CT scans expose children to radiation and can lead to an increased risk of cancer later in life. As a result, experts recommend minimizing the use of CT scans and encourage the use of ultrasound instead. However, recent studies show that CT scans are still performed at a high rate in children with symptoms of appendicitis.

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CERTAIN Study Finds Common Drug for Treating Pain May Lead to Complications in Certain Surgical Procedures

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a class of drugs used regularly to treat inflammation and reduce pain. As doctors try to avoid negative effects associated with opioid medications, the use of intravenous NSAIDs for treating pain after surgery has increased. But over the past decade, several small studies have shown a connection between NSAID use and complications with healing for surgeries involving the gastrointestinal tract.

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Developing CERTAIN Projects Seeking Patient Partners

The CERTAIN Patient Advisory Network is building a community of individuals who want to inform or partner in the broad range of healthcare research underway and being developed in CERTAIN. We currently have two opportunities that we are exploring and need Patient Partners who are interested in helping us develop patient-centered research studies. If you are interested in getting involved with either of the projects described below, please contact Sarah Lawrence at or (206) 221-7453 to learn more.

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Would YOU Randomize? CERTAIN Asked - You Answered

For the past 100 years appendectomy, or surgical removal of one’s appendix, has been the primary treatment for appendicitis—in fact, two high-profile celebrities, Rafael Nadal and Anderson Cooper, recently underwent surgeries for appendicitis. But new scientific evidence from Europe is challenging the notion that surgery is the best course of treatment for the disease. Five randomized trials involving over 1000 patients have shown favorable results for using antibiotics to treat appendicitis.

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Care and Outcomes in Skilled Nursing Facilities - New Article Examines the Evidence

The surgical population is aging, and an increasing number of surgical patients are being discharged from the hospital into skilled nursing facilities for rehabilitation and recovery. This post-surgical period of care is a very important but poorly-understood part of our healthcare system. In a new article in the Journal of Surgical Research, “Structure, process, and outcomes in skilled nursing facilities: understanding what happens to surgical patients when they cannot go home,” CERTAIN researchers examine current evidence surrounding care and outcomes for patients in skilled nursing facilities, and identify important areas where more evidence is needed.

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Exciting Work Ahead in 2015 - Stay up-to-date with CERTAIN

At CERTAIN, our goal is to improve the quality of heathcare by conducting meaningful comparative effectiveness research and quality improvement activities. By sharing what we learn with our broad network of healthcare stakeholders, we can ensure the work we do has a real impact. We hope you'll stay up-to-date with CERTAIN by reading our Blog, following us on Twitter and Facebook, and sharing our newsletter with friends and colleagues.

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New CERTAIN Publication Rethinks Elective Colectomy as a Treatment for Diverticulitis

Diverticulitis is a painful condition where small pouches of the colon (diverticula) become inflamed and infected. It is one of the leading reasons for elective colon resection—the surgical removal of part or all of the large intestine (colon). But in recent years this practice has been called into question. In a new manuscript, “Rethinking elective colectomy for diverticulitis: A strategic approach to population health,” CERTAIN authors Drs. Vlad Simianu and David Flum examine the current landscape of diverticulitis treatment and offer a new perspective on the treatment approach.

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CERTAIN Newsletters

Patient Advisory Network Newsletters

CERTAIN in the News
  • CERTAIN Medical Director Dr. David Flum on The Conversation with Ross Reynolds 4/11/12: listen here.