prcoriA Washington-based non-governmental organization created by the Affordable Care Act to study medical treatments for effectiveness has reached out for communications support.

The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute was founded under the healthcare law as an independent operation to analyze outcomes, clinical effectiveness and "appropriateness" of various treatments by evaluating existing studies and conducting its own. The Institute, which has awarded more than $464M for research projects, was a target of ACA critics during the health reform debate that said the organization would lead to rationing of healthcare for the elderly or even "death panels," charges found to be incorrect.

The PCORI, which has worked with GolinHarris, released an RFP on May 14 to develop a public-facing communications plan for its consortium of 29 research networks, a "complex and highly visible" 18-month initiative running through September 2015. The plan must include editorial content, media relations and other earned media communications efforts.

A 15-month PR contract is expected to result from the search. Proposals are due June 4.

View the RFP (PDF)