Denver Health cuts compliance exposure risk by 90%+ while enabling real-time research portfolio analytics

The CEO loves being able to track award and productivity metrics for the first time


Denver Health is a healthcare system that includes a hospital, sponsored programs, and more, with a focus on structural health services research, trauma, and equity. They spend nearly $15 million in research funding annually and process about 1,200 conflict of interest (COI) disclosures. There’s a lot going on, and efficient systems keep everything running smoothly.

When Amanda Breeden joined Denver Health as Director of Sponsored Programs and Research, she saw opportunities to make her 12-person office even more efficient. She moved them from paper binders to PDF forms, for starters.

She also wanted to streamline the reporting process. “When our new chief research officer (CRO) started, she asked for metrics, but I knew it would take me three weeks to pull each individual file and find what she wanted,” Amanda says. She also wanted to find a solution that would provide visibility into COI disclosures, since her office co-chairs the research compliance committee. Finally, Amanda wanted to make it easier to find funding, rather than having her staff search the internet and put the results in a spreadsheet.

“Before Cayuse, it would take me three weeks to pull data from each individual file [for reporting].”

Amanda Breeden
Director of Sponsored Programs and Research


“The new CRO and I agreed we needed a new system to help us quantify our data and track our work,” Amanda says. “We wanted to replace our paper routing system with something electronic that had transparency.”

So they put together an RFP and started evaluating the responses. Some companies focused on customized solutions, while others were unproven point solutions. “We wanted something that worked out of the box,” Amanda says. Having a cloud-based solution was also critical. “We didn’t want to have to involve our IT department and do a lot of customizations that would then break when things upgrade.” In addition, since there were many areas of research that were needing improvement, a platform that was able to have apps with workflows that connected across apps and processes was highly desired.

Cayuse was the perfect fit, Amanda says. “When we saw the Cayuse demo, we said, ‘This is it!’ My staff was all in agreement: Cayuse was the most aligned to our needs for a connected system that was cloud-based and had comprehensive analytics.” She says Cayuse’s strong reputation and 25+ years in business made the decision even easier: “That helped reassure our CRO that Cayuse would help build sustainable infrastructure at Denver Health,” she says.

They ultimately purchased four products: Sponsored Projects, Proposals, Fund Finder, and Outside Interests.

“Cayuse was the most aligned to our needs for a connected system that was cloud-based and had comprehensive analytics.”

Amanda Breeden
Director of Sponsored Programs and Research


Amanda and her staff are enjoying several benefits from Cayuse’s integrated solutions: improved transparency and compliance, increased efficiency, and real-time access to data.

Transparency & compliance

“The primary benefit for us is transparency and access to information for our central office,” Amanda says. Before Cayuse, they just had to trust that people made COI disclosures in another system. “Whereas now, we can tie that data together and make sure disclosures are actually happening,” she says. They also get automated reminders about disclosures and award conditions, which help improve compliance as well.

Increased efficiency

Cayuse’s integrated system saves time, since staff don’t have to go back and forth between systems to see disclosures. Proposal preparation and submission is also faster and accurate, thanks to Proposals’ 1,500+ error validations. “Cayuse catches every error. We love it,” Amanda says. “Before, we were using tools that didn’t have error-checking. Things happen really fast and can get missed, so Cayuse helps.”

Real-time access to data

“Cayuse gives me data I couldn’t access before,” Amanda says. For the first time, she and her staff can see and track award and productivity metrics including:

  • The percent of submitted proposals that get funded
  • Which departments and areas receive awards
  • Which PIs submit the most proposals and get funded the most
  • How many proposals each analyst is working on, and how many are funded vs. unfunded
  • How long it takes to review protocols

“Before, we didn’t have a good way to measure a lot of these things,” she says.

Amanda adds that Cayuse’s outstanding customer service is the icing on the cake. “Cayuse customer service is excellent, very responsive,” she says. Denver Health leadership is similarly enthusiastic about the new solutions: “When our CEO and top leadership saw the analytics, they loved it. We’re so thrilled to have a powerful tool that’s so easy to use!”

“When our CEO and top leadership saw the analytics, they loved it.”

Amanda Breeden
Director of Sponsored Programs and Research

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