From Innovation to Translation: Spotlight on Research Performed at and by the UCLA School of Nursing

Each year, Research Days provides faculty and students at the UCLA School of Nursing with the opportunity to showcase their research. And amazing work it is.  Currently, 78 percent of faculty have external funding. This year was no exception.

Day 1 – The Podium Presentations

Research at the school covers a wide range from basic science to wireless technology to clinical practice.

 

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Associate Director of Research, Ann Williams, kicked off the first day introducing five new grants that cover that spectrum:

 

 

 

  • JoAnn Eastwood – With a grant from the American Heart Association, Eastwood is using wireless technology to develop an intervention to reduce cardiovascular disease among young black women, where morbidity and mortality rates are significantly higher than in white women.
  • Paul Macey – Macey has an RO1 from the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR) to look at why women with obstructive sleep apnea show more severe heart and neuropsychological consequences than their male counterparts.
  • Carol Pavlish – Working with nurse researchers at UCLA Medical Center, Mayo Clinic and Massachusetts General, Pavlish is implementing and evaluating an ethics research program to prevent or mitigate ethical conflicts in critical care units, especially during care of patients near the end of life.
  • Nancy Pike – In a first of its kind study, Pike is looking at the relationship between memory loss and structural brain injury in adolescents with single ventricle heart disease.  Results from this research have the potential to dramatically impact clinical practice.
  • Dottie Wiley – Invasive anal cancer is a health crisis for gay, bisexual and other men having sex with men. Wiley is working on improving screening tools to better predict men who are at higher risk and to improve test collection protocols.

On to the research spotlights

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Mary Woo provided an overview of her current research: Brain Drain: Structural and Functional Brain Changes in Heart Failure. Woo has some amazing MRI pictures of the differences in brains in healthy people and people who have heart failure.

Woo ended her presentation with a strong plea to encouraged students to take advantage of the opportunity to get involved with faculty research – an opportunity that not all nursing schools offer.

PhD student Maria Yefimova shared her research funded by the Harford Foundation. In a study that marries nursing, aging and technology, Yefimova is working with an assisted living facility in Missouri that has installed "smart home technology" to monitor behavior of their residents in order to predict who is at the greatest risk for decline and adverse events. Changes in time spent sitting and time spent in the bathroom may reflect the decreasing energy of the resident. By monitoring these changes to daily routines, interventions can be developed to prevent further deterioration.

The first day ended with a guest speaker, Jie Hu, from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, who discussed her community-based research with Chinese Elders with chronic diseases. Hu has done a lot of work in China and developed successful interventions using pictures for education to reach individuals with low literacy. She has now expanded her research to diabetes self-management interventions for Hispanic/Latino adults.

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Day 2 – The Poster Presentations

Hanging on the walls of the third, fourth and fifth floors were posters explaining research projects being done by faculty and by students. From noon to 1 pm, poster authors stood proudly by to discuss their work and answer questions from very interested faculty, staff, and students.

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Thanks to the Faculty Research and Professional Affairs Committee for all of their great work:

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  • Dong Sung An (Chair)
  • Ann Williams, Jo-Ann Eastwood, Nancy Pike, Eufemia Jacob, Carl Tyler, Mary Woo, Sally Maliski, Priscilla Kehoe

Funding Support: 

  • Sigma Theta Tau
  • The Dean's Office

Find out more about current funded research at the School here.