Current Projects

Sandbox Projects

A sandbox is an isolated testing environment that enables users to run programs or execute files without affecting the application, system, or platform on which they run. The sandbox allows developers to test programming code for optimal use of the tool. 

The CD2H sandbox environments enable CTSA hubs to develop, evaluate, and share tools and methods with the translational research community.


Cloud-based Sandbox for Analytics (Natural Language Processing)

A continuation of Phase II collaborative work with the Informatics Enterprise Committee (iEC) working group, this project aims to deploy a suite of natural language processing (NLP) tools and realize evaluation measures and tools as well as best practices. 

Cloud-based Sandbox for Best Practices in Clinical Machine Learning (ML)

A sandbox project designed to create a best practices platform for deploying and evaluating clinical machine learning tools and algorithms. Goals include provisioning community-vetted solutions to common clinical machine learning challenges, including data preparation, analysis of bias sources, and evaluation/validation of algorithms. 

Cloud-based Sandbox for the Evaluation of Data Quality Assessment Methods

A sandbox project designed to develop, evaluate, and share tools and methods for data quality assessment. This sandbox project will include a pilot that leverages the Accrual to Clinical Trials (ACT) Network data to understand the quantity and completeness of ACT data and differences in coding practices across institutions.  

Community Projects

The Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) community possesses strength in its evaluation, continuous quality improvement, team science, and dissemination of healthcare data. Community projects leverage this foundation to coordinate informatics expertise, collaboration, and training with the goal of strengthening the culture of the CTSA community.


Advancing the Application of Maturity Models

A continuation of a Phase II project, this project aims to advance the development and deployment of informatics maturity models and measures for use by CTSA hubs and decision makers.

This is a community incubator project with the following goals: (1) work with Clinical Trials Registration and Results Reporting Taskforce; (2) explore creating API specification for IRB, CRMS, interchange, (3) ground on single IRB FHIR project

Cloud-based DUA

This project is based on a pilot with the FDA and will create a cloud-based data use agreement toolkit to support the entry of de-identified EHR data from partner institutions into the sandboxes. The project will leverage a preconfigured FHIR repository maintained on the CD2H/NCATS cloud or behind the partner institution’s firewall as a demonstration. The team will work with the community to write Governance, SOPs, and policy for CTSA informatics community collaboration. A pan-sandbox Governance group will have CD2H and community representatives to contribute subject matter for specific domains.     

Collaborative Enhancement of the ACT Ontology

The Accrual to Clinical Trials (ACT) Ontology supports queries across multiple research institutions in the ACT Network, a nationwide federation of leading academic research institutions that share aggregate patient counts from electronic health record (EHR) data. Its development is funded by the NIH through the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) and the Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) program. It contains over 125 million patient records. Usability of the ACT ontology will improve the precision, recall, and reproducibility of identifying clinical cohorts in EHR data sets. 

Data Discovery Engine

The Data Discovery Engine provides a set of tools to help data providers and portal developers share dataset metadata in a more interoperable way, by combining metadata with an existing dataset plus structured metadata.

Infrastructure Projects

Infrastructure projects are collaborative efforts that provide structure for the informatics-based architecture needed for discovery of relevant data that can fundamentally impact healthcare quality and outcomes.


Administration Core Operational Architecture

This ongoing core infrastructure project creates an aggregated warehouse of resource information (calendared events, communications, engagement outreach, documents, presentations, educational materials). Resource information is made available to the CTSA community in a variety of forms, including a website with search tools and widgets for CTSA hubs to enable regional discovery and dissemination. 

Information Architecture

An internal project aimed at developing single source of truth workflows for program management. This ongoing core infrastructure project creates an aggregated warehouse of resource information (expertise, services, documents, educational materials). 

Next Generation Data Sharing Core Infrastructure

This ongoing HL7 Community Engagement project focuses on clinical data model harmonization and terminology services for the CTSA hubs. The three areas of work being conducted within this project are:

1. Common Data Model Harmonization (CDMH) II: Common clinical data model harmonization;
2. Healthcare Open Terminology (HOT) Ecosystem: Value sets and terminology harmonizaiton;
3. HL7 Vulcan Accelerator: Defining/enhancing FHIR resources that connect real world data with regulated submissions;