Prevention in Focus

Webinar Series

Better Measurement of Multimorbidity: What’s New and What Funding is Available?

December 19, 2022
Jerry Suls, Ph.D.
Jerry Suls, Ph.D.

Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, Northwell Health

Siran M. Koroukian
Siran M. Koroukian, Ph.D.

School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University

Marcel Salive, M.D., M.P.H.
Marcel Salive, M.D., M.P.H.

National Institute on Aging, NIH

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About the Webinar

Chronic conditions accumulate over time, and the peak onset of multimorbidity (i.e., the existence of more than one chronic condition) occurs between the fourth decade (ages 30 to 39) through 65 years of age. Consequently, about two-thirds of older adults have multimorbidity, making it the most common chronic condition. Multimorbidity is accompanied by complexity, higher health care burdens and costs, and worse health outcomes. Establishing the presence and pattern of multimorbidity in individuals or populations is important for health care delivery, research, and policy.

This webinar provides highlights of the 2018 NIH workshop, Measuring Multimorbidity: Matching the Instrument and the Purpose, which reviewed the state of the science and produced recommendations for research (Salive et al., 2021). Multimorbidity measurement is not standardized, and the choice of measurement tools can be based upon purpose, research needs, and available data (Suls et al., 2021). The presenters discuss emerging models for analyzing multimorbidity, including classification and regression tree (CART) (Suls et al., 2022).

The webinar concludes with a discussion of select NIH initiatives to advance multimorbidity research, including two funding opportunities on improving the measurement of multimorbidity and developing innovative interventions for multiple chronic conditions. Both funding opportunities have been extended and are accepting applications until January 8, 2024.


About Jerry Suls

Dr. Jerry Suls is a professor at the Institute of Health System Science, Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, at Northwell Health in New York where he currently studies multimorbidity and N-of-1 virtual behavioral interventions. His research has been supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institute on Aging (NIA), American Heart Association, and National Science Foundation. He has taught at Georgetown University, the State University of New York at Albany, and the University of Iowa, as well as served as a senior scientist in the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences at the National Cancer Institute from 2013 to 2019. He is the recipient of the 2012 Excellence in Health Psychology Research Award and the 2020 Nathan W. Perry, Jr. Award for Career Service to Health Psychology from Society for Health Psychology (American Psychological Association Division 38). He is also a past president of the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research.

About Siran M. Koroukian

Dr. Siran M. Koroukian is a health services researcher and professor in the Department of Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, School of Medicine, at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. Her interests lie in large database methodology, disparities research, multimorbidity measurement, and the application of analytic approaches that allow for the identification of phenotypes, or combinations of—rather than individual—risk factors or conditions associated with a certain outcome.

About Marcel Salive

Dr. Marcel Salive is a medical officer in the Division of Geriatrics and Clinical Gerontology at NIA, at the NIH. He developed and oversees an innovative research program on multiple chronic conditions in older adults including national consortia, pragmatic clinical trials, and clinical research projects. He developed NIA’s program to conduct research into improving the effectiveness of treatment strategies for the comorbid conditions that occur frequently in combination with Alzheimer’s disease. He is a member of the NIH Common Fund-supported Health Care Systems Research Collaboratory and the program officer for several of its trials. He is board certified in preventive medicine and a fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine.

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