Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Institute for Public Health and Medicine

Center for Patient-Centered Outcomes


The Center for Patient Centered Outcomes provides a bridge and an incubator for investigators and clinician-scientists across FSM and the University, whose research and interests focus on integration of health outcomes that incorporate the centrality and perspective of the patient. Patient centered outcomes are health outcomes ranging from standard clinical outcomes to those measuring health-related quality of life (symptoms, function and well being), integrating the voice and perspective of patients and their families to improve health care, access and decision-making.

David Cella, PhD, a pioneer in the field of outcome science and a passionate advocate for incorporating the voice of the patient, is director of the Center and Chair of the Department of Medical Social Sciences (MSS), the departmental base of the Center. MSS has a rich and varied patient-centered outcomes research program spanning from measurement innovation in patient reported outcomes (PROs) to clinical application including central emphasis on the use of health information technology. The Center for Patient-Centered Outcomes builds upon the MSS departmental outcome science base by expanding research and training infrastructure for patient-centered outcome research across all of FSM. Center members include faculty across a range of FSM departments and divisions including MSS, Surgery, Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Neurology, Pediatrics, Preventive Medicine and Biomedical Informatics.

The goals of the Center for Patient-Centered Outcomes are to:

  1. Serve as an interdisciplinary incubator for patient centered outcomes research at FSM and across the University.Forge novel collaborations amongst diverse faculty to catalyze innovative outcome science research including:
    • Link clinician scientists interested in integrating patient outcomes into research and clinical care with outcome science methodologists
    • Promote innovative outcome science research including linkage of patient-centered approaches to diverse areas of research such as decision science and mechanistic research
    • Build scientific capacity for patient-centered outcomes research at NU including strategic alignment with the research priorities of PCORI ( and facilitation of large scale integrated initiatives such as centers and program projects
    • Utilize MSS's well-developed research infrastructure to support and enable investigators and clinician scientists throughout FSM engaged in patient-centered outcomes research
  2. Promote scientific discourse and training in patient centered outcomes research including:
    • Foster scientific exchange via seminars and work-in-progress meetings that enable cross-fertilization and critical feedback. In this way, promote high quality cross-disciplinary research patient-centered outcomes to improve health and health care.
    • Create opportunities for engagement with key stakeholders for patient-centered research.
    • Provide mentorship and apprenticeship opportunities for postdocs, graduate students, medical students and residents interested in patient-centered outcomes research in partnership with the Center for Public Health Education and FSM and Arts and Sciences training programs.

PCORI-Related Resources:

Center Information

633 N. St. Clair, 19th Floor
Chicago, IL 60611

Center Director
David Cella, PhD

Dr. Cella

Center Associate Director
Zeeshan Butt, PhD
Zeeshan Butt, PhD

Member List

In the media...

Founded: 2012

For more information, click here to visit main center page.