2015 News Archives

fuld scholarship recipients 2015

Helene Fuld Health Trust awards scholarship grant for nursing graduate students

During a 10-month teaching assignment in Cairo last year, recent college graduate Zoey Przekurat started to lose her hair. But it wasn’t from the stress of managing an elementary school classroom.

The pollution in the Egyptian capital was so pervasive, Przekurat explained, that it caused many people—even young ones—to begin balding.

Moved by her experiences, Przekurat aspired to a career in health care. She decided to pursue a nursing degree at Case Western Reserve University because of the experience—more than 1,000 hours—she would gain learning to care for patients in nearby facilities.

This new grant targets students pursuing advanced nursing studies after majoring in other disciplines as undergraduates. Przekurat, for example, majored in education at the University of Miami. She ultimately hopes to work in international public health or healthcare administration.

Min Liu, Rachael Garson and Jennifer McGowan also received the scholarship.

Like many students in the Graduate Entry Nursing Program, McGowan hopes to continue her education beyond her MN; she’d like to earn a degree that allows her to become a nurse anesthetist.

“I was very grateful for the help,” McGowan said of receiving the Helene Fuld Health Trust scholarship. “I would hope that what I do with my career and my education at [CWRU] would be something the donors would be proud of, that they could say, ‘I’m glad I contributed to providing an education for someone who became a great nurse.’ ”

The Helene Fuld Health Trust is scheduled to award the grant over three years. Each year, half of the funds awarded will support current-year scholarships for students in the Graduate Entry Nursing Program; the other half will fund an endowment that will provide scholarships in future years.

Read more on The Daily.


rebecca darrah, research

CWRU scientist at nursing school to lead new gene-modifying cystic fibrosis research

A scientist at Case Western Reserve University Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing will lead a pair of studies to develop more effective treatment for symptoms of cystic fibrosis (CF), a life-threatening genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and progressively limits the ability to breathe.

Rebecca Darrah, assistant professor at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and assistant director of Case Western Reserve’s Genetic Counseling Training Program, will direct two new studies to learn more about how gene-modifying treatment can be used to minimize the symptoms of CF.

Both research projects will begin in January.

“With these new studies,” Darrah said, “we are hoping to not only develop new treatment strategies that would benefit all CF patients, but also determine the ideal timing for other clinical interventions already in place to help patients with specific mutations.”

Read more on The Daily.


kangaroo care

Skin-to-skin 'kangaroo' infant care tied to better survival

Premature and underweight newborns may have better survival odds if they pass their days with their bare chests nestled directly against their mothers’ breasts, a research review suggests. Researchers focused on a practice known as “kangaroo care,” which the World Health Organization has long encouraged as a way to reduce infant mortality, particularly in developing countries.

Educating clinicians and women about kangaroo care, discouraging swaddling that gets in the way of skin-to-skin contact, and providing mothers with wraps designed to snuggle undressed infants against their chests might help increase the practice, said Susan Ludington, a researcher at Case Western Reserve University and executive director of the U.S. Institute for Kangaroo Care in Cleveland, Ohio.

“If an infant is well enough to be swaddled or dressed, he should be in kangaroo care,” Ludington added.

Read more from Reuters.


How to create a sleep schedule

When was your last good night’s sleep? Has it been awhile? Dr. Michael Decker from the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University stopped by New Day Cleveland on Fox 8 to talk about the importance of having a sleep schedule.

Watch the full video on Fox 8.


Allison Webel

How HIV became a treatable, chronic disease‌

It has been almost 35 years since the world was introduced to the term AIDS. In the 1980s, researchers and physicians were trying to understand what was causing waves of strange infections and discovered it was a new virus called the human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV. Since that time, HIV has gone from a death sentence to a manageable chronic disease. Today, it is estimated that 1.2 million people living with HIV in the United States and 50,000 Americans are infected with HIV every year.

Thanks to treatment advances, people with HIV can and do live long and full lives. And that has led to a challenge that doctors and patients in the 1980s and early 1990s may not have imagined: the aging HIV patient.

Read more from Allison Webel, PhD on The Conversation.


Chao-Pin Hsiao

Prostate cancer radiation therapy without fatigue? Nursing researcher seeks answers to common side effect

Fatigue from prostate cancer and its treatment can be debilitating.

The symptom, which can’t be relieved with rest, can lead to increased depression, impaired cognitive function, sleep disturbance and health-related quality-of-life issues.

To treat—and ultimately prevent—cancer-related fatigue, Case Western Reserve University cancer researcher Chao-Pin Hsiao will develop and test a novel mechanism of mitochondrial bioenergetics and radiation-induced fatigue using molecular-genetic approaches. The research is supported with a $272,970 grant from National Institute of Nursing Research (K01NR015246).

Read more on The Daily.


ronald hickman

CWRU wins NIH grant to help families make health-care decisions with avatar-based software

A new $2.48 million federal grant will allow researchers at Case Western Reserve University to revise and test the effectiveness of an interactive avatar-based technology that helps users make end-of-life decisions well in advance of an emergency.

Each year, millions of Americans are admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU), which can trigger a cascade of difficult decisions about treatment and end-of-life care, especially for patients with chronic illnesses. But more than half of ICU patients haven’t documented their end-of-life preferences in any formal way, such as with a living will or medical power of attorney.

“What this does is put their loved ones in very uncomfortable positions,” said Ronald Hickman Jr., an associate professor at Case Western Reserve’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and an acute-care nurse practitioner. “It can be an intimidating situation, so people often default to clinicians and later regret doing so.”

Read more on The Daily.


December 2015

Home for the Holidays 2015. Happy Holidays from Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing! View photos from this year's Home for the Holidays celebration.

How HIV became a treatable, chronic disease‌. It has been almost 35 years since the world was introduced to the term AIDS. In the 1980s, researchers and physicians were trying to understand what was causing waves of strange infections and discovered it was a new virus called the human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV. Since that time, HIV has gone from a death sentence to a manageable chronic disease. Today, it is estimated that 1.2 million people living with HIV in the United States and 50,000 Americans are infected with HIV every year. Thanks to treatment advances, people with HIV can and do live long and full lives. And that has led to a challenge that doctors and patients in the 1980s and early 1990s may not have imagined: the aging HIV patient. Read more from Allison Webel, PhD on The Conversation.

November 2015

CWRU wins NIH grant to help families make health-care decisions with avatar-based software. A new $2.48 million federal grant will allow researchers at Case Western Reserve University to revise and test the effectiveness of an interactive avatar-based technology that helps users make end-of-life decisions well in advance of an emergency. Each year, millions of Americans are admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU), which can trigger a cascade of difficult decisions about treatment and end-of-life care, especially for patients with chronic illnesses. But more than half of ICU patients haven’t documented their end-of-life preferences in any formal way, such as with a living will or medical power of attorney. “What this does is put their loved ones in very uncomfortable positions,” saidRonald Hickman Jr., an associate professor at Case Western Reserve’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and an acute-care nurse practitioner. “It can be an intimidating situation, so people often default to clinicians and later regret doing so.” Read more on The Daily.

Prostate cancer radiation therapy without fatigue? Nursing researcher seeks answers to common side effect. Fatigue from prostate cancer and its treatment can be debilitating. The symptom, which can’t be relieved with rest, can lead to increased depression, impaired cognitive function, sleep disturbance and health-related quality-of-life issues. To treat—and ultimately prevent—cancer-related fatigue, Case Western Reserve University cancer researcher Chao-Pin Hsiao will develop and test a novel mechanism of mitochondrial bioenergetics and radiation-induced fatigue using molecular-genetic approaches. The research is supported with a $272,970 grant from National Institute of Nursing Research (K01NR015246). Read more on The Daily

Study finds men can benefit from pelvic exercises after prostate cancer treatment. Men with urinary leaks from surgery or radiation therapy for prostate cancer can benefit from “Kegel” exercises known for treating incontinence in women after giving birth, according to a Case Western Reserve University study. About 30 percent of prostate cancer patients nationally are affected by incontinence a year after surgery, and another 14 percent still feel the effects after five years, said Amy Y. Zhang, associate professor from the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve. Read more about Zhang's research in the fall 2015 issue of Forefront magazine and on The Daily

October 2015

How the time change can affect your body. What are the affects of "falling back" on your body? There are biological changes in your brain, due to the shorter days in the winter months. To combat this, Elizabeth G. Damato, PhD, RN, CPNP, Associate Professor in the School of Nursing, says, to get your dose of sunshine. The light helps people adjust to the time change. "Set your clocks back before you go to bed, so that you'll actually go to sleep an hour before you usually would," she says. "Then, tomorrow morning you'll start to feel like you got that extra hour of sleep." Because the sun will probably already be up by the time people get out of bed on Sunday, it will feel natural to be awake. Watch on wkyc.com.

Case Western Reserve University receives $1.17 million grant to encourage nursing students to enter PhD program. Case Western Reserve University has received a five-year, $1.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to prepare 20 African-American and Hispanic nurses to pursue doctorate degrees in nursing. The Bridges to the Doctorate training program will allow students in the master's in science of nursing program at Cleveland State University and Ursuline College to enter CWRU's PhD program. "Hospitals serve people of all races and ethnic backgrounds, and more nurses from underrepresented groups targeted in this project are needed to reflect the patient population," says Elizabeth Madigan, PhD, RN, FAAN, Independence Foundation Professor. "And that starts with having a more diverse faculty that can serve as role models for future nurses." Read more on cleveland.com. Learn more about the Bridges to the Doctorate program.

CWRU wins NIH grant to help families make health-care decisions with avatar-based software. A new $2.48 million federal grant will allow researchers at Case Western Reserve University to revise and test the effectiveness of an interactive avatar-based technology that helps users make end-of-life decisions well in advance of an emergency. Each year, millions of Americans are admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU), which can trigger a cascade of difficult decisions about treatment and end-of-life care, especially for patients with chronic illnesses. But more than half of ICU patients haven’t documented their end-of-life preferences in any formal way, such as with a living will or medical power of attorney. “What this does is put their loved ones in very uncomfortable positions,” said Ronald Hickman Jr., an associate professor at Case Western Reserve’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and an acute-care nurse practitioner. “It can be an intimidating situation, so people often default to clinicians and later regret doing so.”Read more on The Daily.

Depression risk factors identified for moms with children using life-supporting technology. Researchers at Case Western Reserve University previously had found that mothers of children dependent on life-supporting medical technology are at risk for depression. In a new study, the researchers discovered factors that significantly contribute to the condition. Three major factors emerged as triggers for depression: The mothers tended to be younger, didn’t have partners to help them and lacked the personal resourcefulness skills that could have helped them cope, report Valerie B. Toly, assistant professor, and Carol Musil, the Marvin E. and Ruth Durr Denekas Professor at Case Western Reserve’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing.Read more on The Daily.

September 2015

Wennerberg Earns Spot on UAA Presidents Council Scholar-Athlete Team. Annie Wennerberg, a pitcher for the Case Western Reserve University Softball team, was named to the University Athletic Association Presidents Council Scholar-Athlete Team. Wennerberg, a BSN student at Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing who was also given the UAA Most Valuable Player Award last year, ended her 2015 campaign as the NCAA statistical champion in a pair of categories, leading all Division III players in both home runs per game and total home runs during the season. Learn more here.

August 2015

The Academic Minute: Kathy Wright on Healthy Housework. Don’t put away your dust pan just yet: Housework has health benefits. Kathy D. Wright, PhD, RN, GCNS-BC, PMHCNS-BC, instructor at Case Western Reserve University’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing, touts the benefits of cleaning up. Wright is a nurse researcher and KL2 scholar from the National Institute of Nursing Research/National Institute of Health-funded Center of Excellence to build the Science of Self-Management at the School of Nursing. Her primary research focus is designing self-management interventions to improve the physical and mental health of low income older adults. Her research interests include mental and physical health outcomes, chronic stress, prehypertension, and quality of life. Dr. Wright received her PhD in Nursing from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City Utah. Listen to the podcast here

How have midwifery, child birth changed throughout history? Find out at Dittrick Museum of Medical History event. Join the Dittrick Museum of Medical History for the talk "Hard Labor"–Birth in the 19th Century and Today, Thursday, Sept. 24, at 6:30 p.m. The discussion will feature Brandy Schillace, research associate at the museum, and Catherine Osborn, research assistant and graduate anthropology student. Leslie S. Kushner MSN, RN, CNM, instructor of nursing; Gretchen G. Mettler, PhD, CNM, assistant professor of midwifery; and Vanessa Hildebrand, assistant professor of anthropology, will be panelists for a Q&A session following the talk. Join the conversation by registering online or email Schillace at bls10@case.edu

July 2015

Nursing faculty member awarded ITS Active Learning Fellowship . What is the result when you combine cutting-edge technology, paradigm-shifting teaching and world-renowned faculty? Sixteen faculty members at Case Western Reserve University, including Kelly McConnell, DNP, AG-ACNP, MSN, RN, assistant professor, will find out, as they participate in the third annual Active Learning Fellowship. The fellowship is coordinated by Information Technology Services (ITS) in partnership with the Office of the Provost and other campus organizations, such as the University Center for Innovation in Teaching and Education. It provides faculty members at Case Western Reserve with a unique opportunity to enhance their instructional practices by leveraging technology and mandating the active involvement of both themselves and their students.Read more on The Daily

Moment of Truth: Student Wins ACNM Video Contest. Carly Koelsch (NUR '15) is the winner of the 8th Annual American College of Nurse-Midwives Video Contest, with her video, "Moment of Truth." "There was no other option for me, than to go into midwifery," narrates Koelsch in the video, animated by Chris Koelsch. "I needed to re-empower women, one at a time." Koelsch was honored with other award winners at the ACNM 60th Annual Meeting & Exhibition in National Harbor, Maryland. View the video here

Delaying Decisions for Family Members in ICU can Lead to PTSD .Family members who make major medical decisions for relatives in an intensive care unit (ICU) may suffer posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) if they cope by avoiding the situation, according to a new study by scientists at Case Western Reserve University's Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing. The patient isn’t the only one affected by the long stay, according to Amy Petrinec, PhD, RN, from the school of nursing. Family members may suffer, especially if they’re required to make medical decisions with long-range consequences they may not understand, or are reluctant to question. Family members tasked with the difficult and emotional role of decision-maker are better off health-wise dealing with the experience, advised Petrinec, a postdoctoral fellow and the study’s lead researcher. Read more on The Hudson Hub-Times

$2.9 million federal grant supports nurse educators. A new $2.9 million grant from the federal Health Resources and Service Administration for the 2015-16 academic year will support efforts at Case Western Reserve University’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing to build a corps of professional nurse educators. Combined with support from the nursing school, $3.26 million will be available for loans through the Nurse Faculty Loan Program (NFLP) for 111 continuing students and 56 new graduate students pursing advance-nursing degrees. The funds are available for both full- and part-time Master of Nursing (MSN), Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Nursing students. The loans will cover up to $35,500 in annual tuition, plus fees, a textbook and allowance for doctoral students for up to five years. After graduation, NFLP recipients who become nurse faculty at any accredited university in the United States will have up to 85 percent of their loans forgiven. Read more on The Daily.

This Is Why You Can't Fall Asleep in the Summer. There's a scientific reason your body sleeps poorly in a hot bedroom. It's a smaller temperature gradient—or the difference between your core body temperature and the room temperature—that triggers a sleepless night. The optimal gradient is the difference between your core body temperature, 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, and about 68 degrees, the temperature sleep experts say provides an optimal sleep environment. As part of the body's natural rhythm, our core temperature drops about half a degree at night, signaling bedtime. And it seems that a cooler bedroom helps to make this dip happen. But you don’t need to sacrifice a good night’s sleep just because you can't crank up the A/C. Michael Decker, Ph.D., a member of the American Board of Sleep Medicine and laboratory director at Case Western Reserve University’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing, and Philip Gehrman, Ph.D., from the Penn Sleep Center at the University of Pennsylvania, share their tips on the best ways to beat the heat and catch some Zzs. Read more on Real Simple

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