March 2012 Archives

In November 2011, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation announced the Health Care Innovation Challenge, which will award up $1 billion in grants to applicants who will implement the most compelling new ideas to deliver better health, improved care and lower costs to people enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid and CHIP.

Minnesota health care and community organizations were uniquely prepared to submit nearly 40 innovative ideas in response to the challenge.

The UMN Clinical and Translational Science Institute is pleased to invite all Minnesota health care innovators to come together on Tuesday, April 10 for a morning of learning and laying the groundwork for future opportunities through facilitated discussion about The State of Triple Aim Innovation in Minnesota.

The State of Triple Aim Innovation in Minnesota

Date: Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Who should attend?
- Representatives from institutions submitting Health Care Innovation Challenge grant applications
- Representatives from health care providers and systems
- Representatives from payers and health insurance entities
- Representatives from employers and health care purchasers
- Representatives from Minnesota funders
- University of Minnesota faculty, staff, and students
- Anyone interested in advancing the Triple Aim in Minnesota

9:00 am - 9:30 am Opening remarks
9:30 am - 11:30 am Structured discussion around challenge fund submission themes
11:30 am - 12:00 pm Closing remarks
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm Networking lunch (box lunch available)

Registration Information:

**This event has reached capacity and registration is now closed.**

DoubleTree Hotel - Minneapolis South
7800 Normandale Boulevard
Minneapolis, MN 55439

Questions? Contact Andrea Leinberger-Jabari, Coordinator, CTSI Office of Community Engagement for Health, at 612-624-4247 or

Meet Melissa Hansen, MLS, CTSI's Research Navigator. Melissa joined CTSI in December 2011, where she serves as the first point of contact for research teams at the University and in the community, connecting them with experts, information, and resources to conduct and learn about clinical translational science research.


Melissa received her Bachelor of Arts In Psychology and Master of Liberal Studies from the University of Minnesota. She comes to CTSI from the Minnesota Area Health Education Center (AHEC), where she had served as Program Coordinator since 2008. Melissa also brings eight years of experience working on research teams in the Department of Pediatrics, the Masonic Cancer Center, and the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Need help? Contact Melissa directly at 612-626-2318 or

Why do you work in clinical and translational research?

I value contributing to exploration and progress in improving health care and human services. I also really enjoy the diversity of challenges that arise in the process of planning and implementing research projects. It is satisfying to help address problems and to learn new ways to approach questions.

What does your typical work day at CTSI look like? 

As Research Navigator, I handle a wide variety of questions about CTSI services and programs from all manner of communication and all kinds of stakeholders in clinical research. If I cannot answer a question myself, I identify the best person or resource within the CTSI. I try to learn as much as I can about the many facets of the CTSI to help represent the organization well. Each morning I review the requests for services in the CTR Portal and field the requests to the appropriate review committees. In that role, I ensure that the reviewers have the appropriate information to carry out their review, and I follow up with the investigators and study staff on the outcomes of the review. I also contribute to the development of the Clinical Translational Research Portal by providing feedback from my experience supporting research teams as they use our resources and tools.

What do you like to do when you're not at CTSI? 

I like to engage in the arts, in all sorts of mediums. I love film, theater, literature, and visual arts. People never cease to amaze me with their skill and creativity. I also knit, sew, and free-range cross stitch. I am knitting my first sweater right now.

What is your favorite or current read? 

The Pearl by John Steinbeck is my favorite book; I also enjoy Ernest Hemingway, Arthur Miller, and Louise Erdrich.

Favorite quote? 

"I am not young enough to know everything." -Oscar Wilde or "Make it work!" - Tim Gunn

CTSI's Clinical and Translational Research Services (CTRS) is announcing the appointment of an IRB Specialist who will serve as the primary contact in CTRS for providing IRB application and communication advice to clinical and translational research investigators (including community partners), clinical research coordinators, and CTRS colleagues. This service does not supplant the full-service IRB application and communication work available to investigators who request Research Project Management (RPM) services for CTSI project development. Rather, this IRB specialist service will be available to researchers who may benefit solely from advice on completing biomedical IRB applications, writing consent forms, and communicating effectively with the IRB. The IRB Specialist will provide guidance for projects with all types of funding sources.

The IRB Specialist will aid the researcher in determining which University of Minnesota approvals are required to conduct the research study. The IRB Specialist RPM may also provide advice regarding the preparation of applications for approval, responses to stipulations to approval, and other advisory assistance throughout the processes until approvals are obtained.

The IRB Specialist acts as a liaison between the IRB and CTSI. The IRB specialist has an established relationship with the University of Minnesota IRB and can assist in the resolution of problematic applications noted after first IRB review. The IRB specialist RPM will provide consultations with the PI and/or staff to rectify the problems and enable the investigators to submit an application that meets or surpasses the expectations of the IRB.

All IRB Specialist consultations and services are without charge to the PI. Contact Melissa Hansen, Research Navigator, at or 612-626-2318 to request a consultation with the IRB Specialist.