Research with Clinical Databases

Researchers can access electronic medical records in secure studies. Both GW Hospital and CNH use Cerner as their EHR and our physicians use Epic; medical students can also have access to Epic. For most researchers, you will typically need an IRB, work with data analyst support, and need secure storage space and tools.

A recent KL2 workshop with experts Hiroki Morizono PhD (Children’s), Qing Zheng PhD (GW Bioinformatics;) and researcher Anita Patel MD (Children’s) highlighted what a clinician researcher needs to know about Research Using Big Data.

Presenters discussed content and access to various data sources including the EHR, Healthe Intent, TriNetX, All of Us, N3C, PEDSnet, Health Facts-> now Cerner Real World Data, and various Health information Exchanges (including CRISP).

To build your data-savvy, GW Gelman Library often runs workshops (eg Data Wrangling 101 with Python), and offers services for programming and coding and for working with data.

Our CTSI has sponsored several pilots using the Cerner Real World Database that have resulted in leading publications.

To learn more, visit CTSI-CN website to chat with a research navigator, or contact Qing Zheng PhD (, Hiroki Morizono PhD ( or Stuart Nelson (