The Pediatric Emergency Research Network: A Decade of Global Research Cooperation in Pediatric Emergency Care

Terry Klassen, Stuart R. Dalziel, Franz E. Babl, Javier Benito, Silvia Bressan, James Chamberlain, Todd P. Chang, Stephen B. Freedman, Guillermo Kohn-Loncarica, Mark D. Lyttle, Santiago Mintegi, Rakesh D. Mistry, Lise E. Nigrovic, Rianne Oostenbrink, Amy C. Plint, Pedro Rino, Damian Roland, Gregory Van De Mosselaer, Nathan Kuppermann

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objectives The Pediatric Emergency Research Network (PERN) was launched in 2009 with the intent for existing national and regional research networks in pediatric emergency care to organize globally for the conduct of collaborative research across networks. Methods The Pediatric Emergency Research Network has grown from 5- to 8-member networks over the past decade. With an executive committee comprising representatives from all member networks, PERN plays a supportive and collaborative rather than governing role. The full impact of PERN's facilitation of international collaborative research, although somewhat difficult to quantify empirically, can be measured indirectly by the observed growth of the field, the nature of the increasingly challenging research questions now being addressed, and the collective capacity to generate and implement new knowledge in treating acutely ill and injured children. Results Beginning as a pandemic response with a high-quality retrospective case-controlled study of H1N1 influenza risk factors, PERN research has progressed to multiple observational studies and ongoing global randomized controlled trials. As a recent example, PERN has developed sufficient network infrastructure to enable the rapid initiation of a prospective observational study in response to the current coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. In light of the ongoing need for translation of research knowledge into equitable clinical practice and to promote health equity, PERN is committed to a coordinated international effort to increase the uptake of evidence-based management of common and treatable acute conditions in all emergency department settings. Conclusions The Pediatric Emergency Research Network's successes with global research, measured by prospective observational and interventional studies, mean that the network can now move to improve its ability to promote the implementation of scientific advances into everyday clinical practice. Achieving this goal will involve focus in 4 areas: (1) expanding the capacity for global randomized controlled trials; (2) deepening the focus on implementation science; (3) increasing attention to healthcare disparities and their origins, with growing momentum toward equity; and (4) expanding PERN's global reach through addition of sites and networks from resource-restricted regions. Through these actions, PERN will be able to build on successes to face the challenges ahead and meet the needs of acutely ill and injured children throughout the world.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)389-396
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric emergency care
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2021


  • health care disparities
  • health equity
  • implementation
  • multicenter randomized controlled trials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Emergency Medicine


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