Improving patient care and the health of our community through research and education.


New Name, Same Mission

Since 1952, the mission of the Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation (MMRF) has been improving patient care and the health of our community through research and education. With a current focus on four areas – Acute Care/Trauma, Addiction, Health Services and Infectious Disease (HIV/AIDS) – we support and oversee the medical research conducted at HCMC, the flagship acute care and teaching hospital of the Hennepin Healthcare System in downtown Minneapolis.

On August 1, 2018, the Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation (MMRF) officially changed its name to Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute (HHRI), which is still a subsidiary of Hennepin Healthcare System, Inc.  We changed our name to better align with our parent and affiliate organizations. Read more about the name change and research’s role in the Hennepin Healthcare System.

HHRI is one of the largest nonprofit medical research organizations in Minnesota and consistently ranks in the top ten percent of all institutions receiving research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

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Posted on July 6, 2018


Researchers found that criminal justice involvement rose as the intensity of opioid use increased

A public health approach to address the opioid epidemic in the United States must address the complex physical and mental health needs of individuals who use opioids and improve connections between health care, public health and the criminal justice system.

A national study published in JAMA Network Open found people who reported any level of opioid use were more likely than those who reported no opioid use to have physical and mental health conditions, other substance use, and involvement in the criminal justice system that increased with the intensity of opioid use.

The study by investigators from the Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute (HHRI) in Minneapolis, Minn., University of Colorado and New York University examined data from the 2015 and 2016 National Survey on Drug Use. It is the first study to use national data in identifying the health and justice profiles of people using various levels of prescription opioids or heroin. HHRI investigator Tyler Winkelman, MD, MSc, is the lead author on the study. Read more about opioid use linked to poor health…


Posted May 22, 2018
Study finds integrated medical care and social support services affects health care use among Medicaid expansion enrollees

Graphic of Integrated Care


Two studies published this month in Medical Care Research & Review found that providing integrated medical care and social support services led to increased use of primary care among very low-income adults in Hennepin County who were enrolled in a Medicaid accountable care organization (ACO) between 2012 and 2014. Strong primary care relationships, combined with mental health treatment, were linked to improved quality of life among enrollees of the ACO. Hennepin Healthcare’s Kate Vickery, MD, MSc, along with researchers from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and Clinical and Translational Science Institute, Hennepin County and the University of Michigan conducted the study. Read more about the integrated study in vulnerable adults…


HHRI investigators awarded ClearWay Minnesota grant to provide smoking cessation to people leaving the Hennepin County Jail

While smoking rates are dropping in the general population, they’re not for people involved in the justice system. Tyler Winkelman, MD, MSc, along with co-investigator Andrew (Drew) Busch, PhD, LP, are starting a new two-year medical research study to provide smoking cessation to people leaving the Hennepin County Jail. Smoking is not allowed in jail. Intervention at this critical time may help people continue to abstain from smoking after they leave jail. The trial, which is funded by a grant from ClearWay Minnesota, is a first of its kind in the country. Read more about Dr. Winkelman’s and Dr. Busch’s research on


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