SON Research Day studies influence patient care
Published on Monday, April 10, 2023
By: Annie Oeth, firstname.lastname@example.org
Photos By: Jay Ferchaud/ UMMC Communications
Research performed by students in the School of Nursing at the University of Mississippi Medical Center is improving communication between medical professionals and stroke victims, boosting clinical trial recruitment and reducing the chances of post-partum hemorrhages.
Studies on these subjects and more were presented during the School of Nursing’s annual Research and Scholarship Day April 3.
Findings from faculty, graduate students in nursing and undergraduates were presented, showing the multifaceted area of nursing research, said Dr. Lei Zhang, professor and associate dean for research and scholarship in the School of Nursing.
"It is always exciting to see research being put into practice,” said Zhang. “The excellence in nursing research at UMMC is improving patient care and health care as a whole.”
Post-partum hemorrhage accounts for 90 percent of maternal deaths, making it a vital research topic for Debi Fatherree, assistant professor of nursing and a Doctor of Nursing Practice student.
“It is unbelievable that in this developed nation there are so many maternal deaths,” Fatherree said.
Her research began with a baseline audit of the third floor of Wiser Hospital for Women and Infants to gauge the training and knowledge of best practices for prevention and treatment of post-partum hemorrhages. The unit then hosted a drill to test and build on those skills.
"The result was a significant increase in compliance with regard to the audit criteria of risk assessment of pregnant women, post-partum hemorrhage drills and education,” Fatherree said.
She shared an email from a physician who had been called to the unit for a post-partum hemorrhage after Fatherree’s research, including education and drills, had begun. “The nurses were fabulous,” the doctor wrote. “The most important person this benefitted was the patient. I just wanted someone to know how well the post-partum hemorrhage training is going for 3 Wiser."
The post-partum hemorrhage drills will be expanded to include physicians next year, Fatherree said.
Stacee Naylor, a PhD in Nursing student with the School of Graduate Studies in the Health Sciences and director of clinical research operations at the MIND Center, presented her research on recruiting strategies for clinical trials focusing on older patients with cognitive challenges.
“Recruitment is a major challenge for research studies involving elderly human participants and is a critical concern facing researchers,” she said.
Palliative care communication with stroke patients was the focus of research presented by Brooke Schaefer, a DNP student and a neurology nurse practitioner at UMMC.
“This is something that’s always been a big part of what I do,” she said. “Stroke patients and their families want to be told what the treatment options are so they can be involved in the decision-making process.”
Communication is an essential part of nursing, Schaefer said, “because the nurses are the ones at the bedside and can be closest to patients.”
Schafer’s research focused on the 4 South unit of University Hospital, where stroke patients who do not require intensive care are often treated. Audits, identification of barriers and best practices for communication with stroke patients, and a communication check box for patients’ progress notes all promoted palliative care communication with stroke patients and their families, she said.
“Communication improved with the training program and improved the overall health care experience,” she said.
Student poster winners this year include Alana Andrus, an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing student in Oxford; Tonya Jones, a DNP student; and Dr. Deloris Slade, who is studying in the PhD in Nursing program.
Faculty poster winners include Dr. Azad Bhuiyan, a School of Nursing biostatistician; School of Health Related Professions faculty Dr. Driscoll DeVaul and Dr. Kendria Lyles, who collaborated with Dr. Xiaoshan “Judy” Gordy; and School of Nursing faculty members Dr. Keyshawnna “Nikki” Lee and Dr. Tara Price.
“I want to take this opportunity to thank the amazing Dr. Zhang and research faculty and staff presented at our Research and Scholarship Day,” said Dr. Julie Sanford, dean and professor of School of Nursing. “They did an incredible job, and I am so proud of the work the faculty and students have accomplished.”