PERN Pediatric Emergency Research Network Update

Silvia from PERN and Simon from PEMSIG successfully advocated for a combined precourse on how to do research.

Franz Babl, Australia



The clinician researchers in PERN are looking forward to attending the ICEM 2023 conference ( in Amsterdam. 

This will be run conjointly with faculty from the IFEM Research Committee and PERN on Monday 12 June preceding the main ICEM conference. It is open to all participants with the aim to providing an opportunity to meet fellow experienced researchers who can provide mentorship on research projects at any stage in their development (conceptualisation, set up, data analysis, and publication).

An update of the current major studies:

PERN PROMPT BOLUS study (PRagMatic Pediatric Trial of Balanced vs nOrmaL Saline FlUid in Sepsis)  - Fran Balamuth, Scott Weiss, Nate Kuppermann (led by PECARN, includes PREDICT and PERC)

This open label RCT comparing two different intravenous fluids (normal saline and balanced fluids like lactated Ringer's lactate or Plasmalyte) in sepsis is now enrolling at almost 40 EDs across the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Enrolment is going well with >2500 of 8800 children with possible sepsis enrolled. 

Published protocol paper

Weiss SL, et al; Pragmatic Pediatric Trial of Balanced Versus Normal Saline Fluid in Sepsis (PRoMPT BOLUS) Investigators of the PECARN, PERC, and PREDICT Networks.

PRagMatic Pediatric Trial of Balanced vs nOrmaL Saline FlUid in Sepsis: study protocol for the PRoMPT BOLUS randomized interventional trial.

Trials. 2021 Nov 6;22(1):776.

PERN Predicting Severe Pneumonia- Community-Acquired Pneumonia - Todd Florin & Nate Kuppermann (led by PECARN, includes multiple networks and individual institutions)

This prospective cohort study of children 3 mo to <14 years with community-acquired pneumonia at 69 EDs has completed the enrolment of 2518 children with CAP. An abstract will be presented at the PAS Pediatric Academic Societies meeting in Washington, USA.  MANUSCRIPT DRAFTED

PERN Covid-19 Study -Stephen Freedman (led by PERC , includes multiple networks and individual institutions)

Covid19 arm of the PERN Predicting Severe Pneumonia study - prospective cohort study in 3222 children with Covid-19 includes 41 EDs in 10 countries. The first papers have been published and provide a unique insight into the paediatric dimension of the pandemic. 

Recent resulting papers  from the data collected:

  • Funk AL, et al ; Pediatric Emergency Research Network-COVID-19 Study Team. Outcomes of SARS-CoV-2-Positive Youths Tested in Emergency Departments: The Global PERN-COVID-19 Study. JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Jan 4;5(1):e2142322
  • Funk AL, et al. Post-COVID-19 Conditions Among Children 90 Days After SARS-CoV-2 Infection. JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Jul 1;5(7):e2223253.
  • Freedman SB, et al. Corticosteroids and Other Treatments Administered to Children Tested for SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Emergency Departments. Acad Pediatr. 2022 Sep-Oct;22(7):1200-1211.

Bronchiolitis in Infants Placebo Versus Epinephrine and Dexamethasone (BIPED) study- Amy Plint (led by PERC, includes PREDICT)

Placebo-controlled RCT assessing steroids and adrenaline in bronchiolitis to reduce hospitalization at 7 days. It aims to enroll 1,616 infants aged > 60 days and < 12 months with 300 children enrolled so far.

Protocol paper

Lan J, et al; Pediatric Emergency Research Canada (PERC) KIDSCAN/PREDICT BIPED Study Group. Remote, real-time expert elicitation to determine the prior probability distribution for Bayesian sample size determination in international randomized controlled trials: Bronchiolitis in Infants Placebo Versus Epinephrine and Dexamethasone (BIPED) study. Trials. 2022 Apr 11;23(1):279.

PERN Asthma outcomes project Simon Craig (led by PREDICT, includes multiple networks)

Multistage mixed methods approach to assess how to best measure the outcome in asthma studies. A number of the projects have been completed or are in analysis stage.

Recent papers 

Craig S, et al. Treatment patterns and frequency of key outcomes in acute severe asthma in children: a Paediatric Research in Emergency Departments International Collaborative (PREDICT) multicentre cohort study.

BMJ Open Respir Res. 2022 Mar;9(1):e001137