The Beckwith Institute Promotes Shared Decision Making with Grants to UPMC Programs

By: Courtney Caprara

Decisions about health care can be daunting, and they should not be made alone. The Beckwith Institute will provide a total of $273,210 in grant funding to ensure that patients and their families work together with UPMC caregivers to make the best decisions possible for overall physical and emotional health.

Through the Clinical Transformation Program, The Beckwith Institute accepts grant applications from UPMC clinicians and staff members system-wide to fund projects that promote collaboration and communication with patients. This year, 11 innovative projects that support shared decision making will receive funding so they can be implemented at UPMC facilities.


“UPMC clinicians and staff are passionate about the care they provide, and the support from The Beckwith Institute allows them to put their ideas for improved care into action,” said Tami Minnier, chief quality officer, UPMC. “These projects will have a long-term impact on our patients by facilitating communication with those who are striving every day to keep them healthy.”

A wide variety of initiatives received funding from The Beckwith Institute this year, including the following:

  • Two game-based applications, one to promote self-advocacy among women with cancer, and the other to teach pediatric asthma patients and their families asthma prevention strategies.
  • Two group initiatives, one aimed at increasing collaboration between physicians and patients with cystic fibrosis, and another focused on education and support efforts for patients undergoing esophageal cancer surgery.
  • A program that will provide a toolbox filled with activities designed for patients identified as being at risk for developing delirium.
  • A program that will establish coordinated care for victims of domestic violence by training health care providers to assess emotional and physical trauma.
  • The establishment of the UPMC McKeesport Chronic Pain Institute, which will provide inpatient and outpatient services to help patients manage chronic pain without visiting the emergency department.

With the support of UPMC Chairman G. Nicholas Beckwith and his wife, Dorothy, and matching contributions from UPMC, The Beckwith Institute provides annual grants through two complementary initiatives. In addition to the Clinical Transformation Program, which focuses on shared decision making, the Frontline Innovation Program aims to improve the bedside experience of patients.

For a full list of grant awards, please visit The Beckwith Institute Website.