Clinical Electives Program: Health Services Research

3-Month Research Elective for MD-PhD Students

Rotation Coordinator:
Julia Porcino, MS

Rotation Description
This rotation is offered through the Epidemiology and Biostatistics Section of the NIH Clinical Center's Rehabilitation Medicine Department (RMD), which supports the research and statistical needs of the RMD staff. The Section's research portfolio includes population-level research on health services and disability-related public health issues. Broadly, the Section's research examines health disparities, health services, disability, and health related policies and programs. Current initiatives include: a multi-year effort to assist the Social Security Administration explore innovative methods for augmenting the disability determination process; an examination of the need for, access to, use and cost of health and health related services among adults with chronic health conditions and disabilities; and an evaluation of the types of corticosteroid used in interventional spine procedures over time in a Medicare population.

Students will become familiar with the research team's current projects and develop an appreciation for/understanding of health services and rehabilitation medicine research more generally. A selection of seminal publications in the student's area of interest will be provided to facilitate critical examination of the literature and substantive discussion with team members. With guidance from the RMD research team, students will prepare a draft research proposal and develop a research abstract with intent to submit and present at a scientific conference.

Rotation Objectives:

  • Develop general knowledge related to health services and rehabilitation medicine research, including health disparities, organization and quality effectives of health services, and disparities and health service utlilization, with particular focus on people with disabilities
  • Identify a focal area of more in-depth study of the extant literature, methods and implications for policy/practice.
  • Develop a short research proposal to include defining a problem; formulating hypotheses; developing a manageable analytical strategy for future study; and understanding both ethical guidelines and the application of basic protections for human subjects when formulating a research plan.
  • Develop an abstract with intent to submit and present a scientific conference.

Selection of Applicants
Applicants must apply at least four (4) months prior to their anticipated start date. Participants will be selected for this rotation based on the student's level of preparation and commitment to accomplishing the rotation objectives. The selection process will include a telephone interview to insure that the applicant's interest and goals are well aligned with the highly individualized training experience to be provided.

NOTE: PDF documents require the free Adobe Reader.

This page last updated on 05/21/2021

You are now leaving the NIH Clinical Center website.

This external link is provided for your convenience to offer additional information. The NIH Clinical Center is not responsible for the availability, content or accuracy of this external site.

The NIH Clinical Center does not endorse, authorize or guarantee the sponsors, information, products or services described or offered at this external site. You will be subject to the destination site’s privacy policy if you follow this link.

More information about the NIH Clinical Center Privacy and Disclaimer policy is available at