News at a Glance (September 2016)

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Cameras and Communication

University of Michigan School of Nursing (UMSN) Associate Professor Milisa Manojlovich, PhD, RN, CCRN, will lead an innovative research project aimed at understanding communication between physicians and nurses. Dr. Manojlovich and colleagues will use a $100,000 R03 grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to determine if videotaping is a feasible strategy to improve communication with the ultimate goal of advancing patient safety. The project will include shadowing and videotaping nurses and physicians, and a review of videotaped conversations by these same doctors and nurses to address areas where they believe mutual understanding did or did not occur. The researchers will use this information to find themes in communication failures, and take the next step of designing interventions to improve communication practices.

Preparing Nurses for Disaster Response

“After a disaster, everyone wishes they were more prepared. If we can reach a sustainable level, that’s key to success,” explains Clinical Associate Professor Sue Anne Bell, PhD, RN, FNP-BC, in Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) Connection. Dr. Bell shares why she advises nursing students to prepare for disasters from natural catastrophes to mass shootings, why it can be difficult to address these topics in traditional nursing curriculum, and why she’d like to see an expansion of nurses who specialize in disaster preparedness.

Adolescent Goals and Drug Use

An interprofessional student and faculty collaboration led to a new article published in Addictive Behaviors. Rena Steiger, a master’s graduate of U-M’s School of Public Health who worked on the project while a student, UMSN Assistant Professor Sarah Stoddard, PhD, RN, CNP, FSAHM, and UMSN Research Area Specialist Jennifer Pierce explore how future goals impact risk-taking behavior in adolescents. Dr. Stoddard led a study surveying 9th-12th graders about their use of stimulants and analgesics (painkillers). The researchers found a perceived risk to future goals did correlate with lower use of these drugs for non-medical reasons. The authors suggest educating adolescents about the risks of certain substances to their future goals could be effective in lowering their use of those drugs. Read the full article: “Adolescents' future orientation and nonmedical use of prescription drugs.”

Fall-Related Injuries

UMSN Research Fellow Geoffrey Hoffman, PhD, MPH advocates for prevention approaches aimed at protecting older adults from falls in a new analysis on expenditures related to fall-related injuries (FRIs). Dr. Hoffman and colleagues reviewed Medicare claims linked to Health and Retirement Study survey data and estimated that the total Medicare expenditures in the 12 months following an  FRI was $9,400, including $1,400 in patient out-of-pocket costs. The researchers say these findings support assessment and development of prevention programs to help protect older adults physically and financially. The findings are published in Health Services Research.

Alumni Accolades & Authors

  • LaDonna Christian with NBNA president Eric J. WilliamsLaDonna Christian, PhD, MSN, APHN-BC, was named Nurse Educator of the Year from the National Black Nurses Association. The award recognizes nurses who make “outstanding contributions to professional and/or patient education." Dr. Christian earned her BSN from UMSN in 1983 and is currently an associate professor of practice in the School of Nursing and Health Sciences at Simmons College. Her expertise is in Public Health Nursing and Environmental Health with a focus on policy and underserved populations. 

  • “To the extent that scope-of-practice laws don’t allow nurse practitioners to do all that they can, they are harming patient care,” explains Peter Buerhaus (MS ’81). He addresses “The 4 Forces that Will Reshape Nursing” in Hospitals and Health Networks. In addition to scope of practice, Buerhaus discusses nursing and physician shortages, new roles for nurses, and how heath system leaders can use the knowledge of experienced nurses to improve health care and quality.

  • Teen Speak Book CoverDr. Jennifer Salerno, (MS ’95) published a new bookTeen Speak: A how to guide for real talks with teens about sex, drugs and other risky behaviors. Dr. Salerno calls the book a road map to starting conversations with teens aimed at reducing actions that could have negative and long-term consequences. It also includes a strong focus on providing parents and teens with ways to talk about positive alternatives and setting the teens up for success in relationships, education and health.

  • “People become too sick, or too drowsy, or too unconscious, to tell us what they’re experiencing,” Margaret Campbell tells The Atlantic in “What it Feels Like to Die,” regarding gaps in knowledge about dying. Campbell is a UMSN PhD (’06) graduate and current nursing professor at Wayne State University specializing in palliative care. The article explores some of the most common questions about dying and why there is a growing body of research about death.