COLUMBIA, Mo. -

The University of Missouri received a multimillion dollar grant that will help form a patient-centered research group.

The $4.5 million federal grant will create the MU Center for Patient-centered Outcomes Research. The group seeks to help patients and doctors make better decisions about health care options.

“This grant is significant because it will expand the capacity of the university to focus on improving outcomes for patients everywhere,” said Steve Owens, the University of Missouri interim chancellor.

With the grant, university researchers will compare whether open surgery or less invasive procedures through arteries are more effective at saving limbs and avoiding repeat hospitalizations; test ways to improve the discharge process for patients returning home from skilled nursing facilities; and study multiple primary care practices to improve decision-making about prescribing narcotics for chronic pain.