NIH: Office of Disease Prevention

Pathways to Prevention: Weighing the evidence. Identifying the research gaps. Determining next steps.

The Pathways to Prevention (P2P) program is strategically located in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Disease Prevention (ODP), which provides the leadership, infrastructure, funding, and coordination necessary to conduct P2P workshops. Previously known as the Evidence-based Methodology Workshop (EbMW) program, the P2P program was renamed in 2013 to better reflect the overarching goal of the program. Each P2P workshop is planned through a collaboration of partners from across the NIH, other federal agencies, content area experts, and individuals representing public-centered values and concerns. The P2P workshop process is initiated by an NIH Institute or Center (IC) Coordinator, who submits the proposal to the ODP P2P Coordinator and participates in an organizational meeting to determine if this is the appropriate time and format for the topic under consideration. The P2P Coordinator works with the IC Coordinator, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Evidence-based Practice Center, the P2P workshop panel, and the Panel Chair to plan and conduct the P2P workshop. Organizational meeting participants also nominate members for the P2P Working Group. The Working Group is involved from the beginning to the end of the workshop planning process; it finalizes the questions that frame the workshop, nominates panelists and speakers, and selects the date of the workshop. To ensure the impartiality of the independent panel for each P2P workshop, the Panel Chair and panelists must have no vested financial or intellectual interest, such as an advocacy position, in the workshop topic.

Pathways to Prevention Workshop Timeline

Approval to Implementation (steps 2 through 5)

Takes 12 to 14 months

Approval to Implementation 12 to 14 months

Proposal Review and Approval - 8 weeks

ODP Receives P2P
Workshop Proposal
  • An NIH IC or Working Group submits proposal to ODP.
  • Proposal is reviewed for content.
  • Finalizing the proposal is a collaboration between the P2P Workshop Coordinator and the NIH IC and can take 4 weeks.
ODP Accepts P2P
Workshop Proposal
  • A committee reviews the P2P Workshop proposal.
  • Decision takes 4 weeks.

Workshop Planning and Implementation - 9 to 12 months

Organizational Meeting
  • Review scope and timing, and make nominations for Panel Chair and members of the Working Group.
  • 4–6 weeks after a topic is accepted.
Working Group Meeting
  • Content area experts finalize workshop questions and agenda, and nominate speakers and panelists.
  • Approximately 8 weeks after the organizational meeting.
Pathways to Prevention
  • 2 days of presentations by experts.
  • Panel writes report and releases it for public comment.
  • 6–8 months after the Working Group meeting.

Dissemination and Follow-Up - 1 to 9 months

  • Press release and telebriefing.
  • Possible publication in peer-reviewed journal.
  • Panel report finalized 4 weeks after the conclusion of the P2P Workshop.
Federal Partners Meeting
  • Review panel report and identify possible opportunities for collaboration.
  • Approximately 6–8 months after the P2P Workshop.

NIH IC Coordinator

To ensure the effectiveness of the P2P workshops, the sponsoring NIH IC or Office within the NIH Office of the Director, designates an IC Coordinator who is responsible for defining the scope of the workshop and initiating the workshop planning process. The IC Coordinator works closely with the ODP P2P Coordinator to ensure that the goals of the workshop are met.

Working Group

Initial planning for each P2P workshop is carried out by a Working Group that finalizes the questions that frame the workshop. Working Group members are nominated by the participants in the organizational meeting. They are content area experts from the federal government, academia, and clinical practice. They finalize the agenda and workshop questions, nominate speakers and panelists, select the workshop date, and are engaged in the workshop process from beginning to end.

Workshop Panel Members

To ensure the impartiality of the independent panel for each P2P workshop, the panel is a multidisciplinary body of non-federal representatives that includes an individual representing public-centered values and concerns and representatives from many of the following disciplines: biostatistics, epidemiology, practicing and academic health, clinical trial research, and other fields relevant to the topic. Furthermore, the panel members must have no vested financial or intellectual interest in the topic under review.

Workshop Panel Chair

To ensure the impartiality of the independent panel for each P2P workshop, the Panel Chair is knowledgeable in the field of medical science under consideration but should neither be identified with an advocacy position regarding the workshop topic nor with research that may be presented to answer any of the workshop questions. Furthermore, the Panel Chair must have no vested interest in the topic under review. The Panel Chair plays an important role in the P2P workshop by moderating discussions during the workshop and facilitating panel deliberations.