Is National Institute of Health, Plastic Surgery Foundation, American Society of Plastic Surgery or Industry Funding the Greatest Contributor of Scholastic Productivity in Academic Plastic Surgeons?
Qing Zhao Ruan1, Justin Cohen1, Yoonji Baek2, Bernard Lee1.
1Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA, 2Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Boston, MA, USA.
Background & Purpose:
Scholastic productivity has previously been shown to be positively associated with National Institute of Health (NIH) grants and industry funding.1-3 We aimed to delineate the relationships of Plastic Surgery Foundation (PSF) funding and American Association of Plastic Surgeons (AAPS) scholarship awards with bibliometrics of scholastic output to reveal the funding source with the largest contribution towards academic productivity.
Institution websites were used to acquire academic attributes of full-time plastic surgeons. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Open Payment database was used to extract industry funding details, while NIH reporter, The PSF and AAPS websites were accessed to acquire NIH, PSF and AAPS award endowment information respectively. Bibliometric data of each surgeon were then collected via Scopus to ascertain its strengths of association with each funding source. Correlation matrix and multiple linear regressions were employed to ascertain the elements of high scholastic output.
We identified 935 academic plastic surgeons with 94(10.1%), 24 (2.6%), 724 (77.4%), and 62(6.6%) receiving funding from PSF, AAPS, industry and NIH respectively. There were positive correlations in receiving NIH, PSF and/or AAPS fundings (p<0.001 for all permutations), while industry funding was found to negatively associate with PSF (r=-0.75, p=0.022) grants. The NIH R award was consistently found to be the most predictive of academic output across all 3
bibliometrics of h-index (β =6.3, p<0.001), career publications (β =32.5, p<0.001), and citations (β =1067.5, p<0.001). Stepwise multiple regression positively identified AAPS academic scholarship award to be the next significant funding source determining high scholastic output across all 3 metrics: h-index (β=4.8, p=0.023), career publications (β=45.1, p=0.001) and citations (β=1833.4, p<0.001). Conventional determinants of high scholastic achievement such as academic rank, age, additional degrees and FACS membership were again considered predictive across all measures used.
Our study demonstrates for the first time the complex associations between PSF, AAPS, NIH and industry funding, and their respective powers of influence in determining established bibliometrics in academic plastic surgeons. The NIH R award is potentially the strongest identifier of high scholastic productivity followed closely by AAPS academic scholarship award as the next notable funding source. Recognition through AAPS academic scholarship awards appeared to fulfill its role of subsequent NIH funding, thereby leading to high academic bibliometrics.
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