Center to Improve Veteran Involvement in Care (CIVIC)
Center to Improve Veteran Involvement in Care (CIVIC), a VA Portland Health Care System Center of Innovation (COIN), was founded in October 2013 with the mission to conduct research that empowers Veterans to improve their health. CIVIC investigators focus on enhancing active Veteran participation in health care with special attention paid to patients who have psychological challenges or other vulnerabilities that may impact self-management and recovery. This mission is in direct support of the first of VA’s Strategic Goals for 2013 – 2018, to “provide Veterans personalized, proactive, patient driven health care”. Ultimately, CIVIC seeks to identify methods to actively incorporate the voice of Veterans into the health services research process.
With 16 core investigators CIVIC conducts research on mental health conditions, including posttraumatic stress disorder, chronic pain and opioids, suicide, psychiatric disorders in cancer patients, substance abuse, chronic opiate use, and traumatic brain injury, as well as health disparities, clinician-patient communication, interprofessional learning, social networks, and health informatics. A major strength of CIVIC’s research efforts is that many investigators actively work directly with patients in a clinical setting. Lead by Director Steven Dobscha, MD and Associate Director Linda Ganzini, MD, MPH, CIVIC’s operational partners include VA Office of Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation, Office of Mental Health Operations, Mental Health Services-Suicide Prevention, Mental Health Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI), Veteran Integrated Service Networks (VISN) 20.