National Institutes of Health R01 Grant Funding Is Associated with Enhanced Research Productivity and Career Advancement Among Academic Cardiothoracic Surgeons. Seminars in thoracic and cardiovascular surgery Bajaj, S. S., Wang, H., Williams, K. M., Pickering, J. M., Heiler, J. C., Manjunatha, K., O'Donnell, C. T., Sanchez, M., Boyd, J. H. 2020


National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding has declined among cardiothoracic surgeons. R01 grants are a well-known mechanism to support high-impact research, and we sought to clarify the association between NIH funding and academic achievement. We hypothesized that cardiothoracic surgeons who acquired R01 funding exhibit greater research output and faster career advancement. All cardiothoracic surgeons (n=992) working at accredited United States cardiothoracic surgery training hospitals in 2018 were included. Institutional webpages, Scopus, and Grantome were utilized to collect publicly-available data regarding each surgeon's training and career history, research publications, and NIH funding. 78 (7.9%) surgeons obtained R01 funding as a principal investigator, while 914 (92.1%) did not. R01-funded surgeons started their attending careers earlier (1998 vs 2005, p<0.0001) and were more likely to have pursued dedicated research training (p<0.0001). R01-funded surgeons authored 5.3 publications/year before their first R01 grant, 9.3 during the grant period, and 8.6 after the grant expired, all of which were greater than the publication rate of non-R01-funded surgeons at comparable career timepoints (2.0-3.0 publications/year, p<0.0001). Among time-matched surgeons who completed medical school in 1998 or earlier (n=73 R01-funded vs n=602 non-funded), R01-funded surgeons have published more total publications (178.0 vs 56.5 papers, p<0.0001) and exhibit a greater H-index (41.0 vs 19.0, p<0.0001). R01-funded surgeons have also advanced to higher academic ranks (p<0.0001) and are more likely to be chiefs of their departments or divisions (42.5% vs 25.7%, p=0.0035). Cardiothoracic surgeons who obtain R01 funding exhibit greater research productivity and faster career advancement.

View details for DOI 10.1053/j.semtcvs.2020.12.002

View details for PubMedID 33359763