Medical Research at Sutter Health
For years, research centers within our own Sutter Health system have led ground-breaking studies leading to medical innovations. For example, clinicians at California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) in San Francisco created the world’s first heart-lung machine. And at Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF), scientists pioneered the use of lasers to treat eye and skin disease.
Established in the 1950s, Sutter-affiliated research institutes are highly respected for their award-winning global contributions to medical knowledge and patient care.
Focusing on Patient-Care Delivery
Created in 2003, the Sutter Health Institute for Research and Education (SHIRE), helps to build on the strengths of the other leading research organizations by focusing on health services or outcomes research. SHIRE provides decision-makers with information to help them improve the effectiveness and efficiency of clinical services.
Technology Under the Microscope
Together, SHIRE, Sutter Health affiliates and our other research institutes have joined to evaluate the early adoption of clinical information technologies, including the electronic health record (EHR), personal health record (PHR), electronic medication administration program (eMAP) and the electronic intensive care unit (eICU).
Research Highlights from Sutter Health
Here’s a sampling of the groundbreaking clinical studies coming from Sutter Health’s research institutes:
- Breast Cancer Risk Assessment
One study found that assessing a combination of risk factors, including breast density, is the most accurate way to determine the breast cancer risk of a postmenopausal woman. The research also found no protective benefit from increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables. (CPMC Research Institute)
- Asian-American Diabetes Study
Thanks to a $2.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, the PAMF Research Institute has undertaken a five-year study on diabetes and its risk factors among the six largest Asian ethnic groups in California—Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese.
- Economic and Clinical Benefits of Inpatient Palliative Care
A study of palliative care at CPMC published in the Journal of Palliative Medicine demonstrated a reduction in patient symptoms, hospital lengths of stay and total costs of care. Clinicians have applied these methods to other Sutter Health affiliates with similar results, leading to a systemwide palliative care initiative. (SHIRE)