DARTNet Institute Informing Practice Improving Care
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President of the Board of Directors and Interim CEO
Turner White

Chief Medical Officer and Chief Technology Officer
Wilson Pace, MD














About > History

History of the Organization

DI began as a research network developed by a collaborative of academic researchers, a professional organization, a private data extraction company, clinical sites, and the Federal government. The original electronic research network, formed in 2007 with funding from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, was called the Distributed Ambulatory Research in Therapeutics Network or DARTNet.

Organizations that were part of DARTNet agreed to extract, standardize, and share (with appropriate privacy safeguards) electronic health record data. DARTNet also pioneered the collection of patient-reported outcomes to facilitate practice-based inquiry.  From this single network of eight clinical organizations and approximately 300 clinicians, DARTNet has grown to become a vibrant collaborative of research networks utilizing similar underlying technologies.

The original aim of DARTNet was to maximize electronic health record data for comparative effectiveness research and quality improvement.  While the DARTNet system can facilitate comparative effectiveness research, its capabilities for generating new knowledge move far beyond what has previously been possible. In addition to using existing data (such as claims information typically used for comparative effectiveness research), DARTNet systems can acquire outcome information reported by clinicians and patients, essentially marrying a practice-based research perspective to a comparative effectiveness research perspective.

Rapid growth since 2007 transformed DARTNet from a single network into a collaboration of multiple national and regional networks. In 2012, the DARTNet Institute was chartered as a 501(c)3 organization.