Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Interview with Pam Matten regarding her research on smoking cessation for healthcare professionals

Vickie’s Research Corner

Welcome again to my corner of the newsletter. It is so amazing to know that so many of our nurses are actually doing research. This issue, I would like to introduce you to Pam Matten, Nurse Navigator for the Lung Program here at St. Joseph Hospital, Orange, California. Her study is called “Assessment of community based smoking/tobacco cessation training program for healthcare professionals.”

Q. What is your study about?
A. “My study is educating nurses in the hospital setting to assess patients readiness to quit smoking. Some of our goals include equipping bedside nurses with the confidence and skills to talk to patients about smoking cessation and give a brief intervention. We follow up by providing access to free smoking cessation classes taught by SJH RNs.”

Q. Is it an EBP/ResearchProject?
A. “This is a quantitative research study.”

Q. What made you interested in this project?
A. “ Let me give a little background about my job first. As the Nurse Navigator for the Lung Program I am responsible to identify and follow up on any patients who have been newly diagnosed with lung cancer. I assist patients in navigating their way through chemotherapy, radiation therapy, etc. and link them to the necessary services and support. In addition, I provide patient education and support throughout their treatment.
I also facilitate a lung cancer support group. I am active in identifying patients for clinical trials and organizing the weekly patient management conference. I have a little bit of everything in my job (which keeps it interesting). I work with marketing and business development on "getting the word out" about the Lung Program by meeting with Primary Care Physicians. I also provide education to the community regarding lung cancer. I teach Smoking Cessation/ Readiness to Quit to the clinicians at SJH and I also teach outpatient smoking cessation classes to the community through a partnership with Santiago Canyon College. Just to add to my job, I facilitate a Journal Club for the physicians on lung cancer. I manage the CT Lung Cancer Screening program, which provides low-cost CT lung screening to at-risk-individuals in the community.
I got started in clinical research through Dr. Eunice Chung PharmD. She partnered me with an Oncology PharmD intern, Dr. Tim Chen. Together we developed the clinician education class I mentioned before. We had smoking cessation classes at outpatient sites but nothing for clinicians on the inpatient side. We wanted to design classes that were cohesively linked to our out-patient resources. The goal is to provide easy access to cessation services through our bedside nurses.”

Q. How did you go about doing your research?
A. “Dr. Wong suggested that we tie our education to a clinical trial. We contacted Dana Rutledge, the Nurse Research Facilitator, to see if she would like to be involved. She said yes and helped us develop the study and get us ready for IRB. We had subsequent meetings and began presenting our model and our preliminary data at conferences. Since this is a multi disciplinary effort our research has been presented at nursing conferences and pharmacy conferences, as well.”

Q. What are your expected outcomes?
A. “I am hoping that the nurses will use the materials they are taught to assess smoking practices for inpatients and point them towards the outpatient classes. I want the question of smoking cessation to be assessed easily and continually, like a vital sign. It takes people an average of 10.8 tries over 18 years before they quit for good. Continual assessment by a health care professional has been shown to increase a patient’s likelihood of quitting by 50%. ”

Q. Have you done research before? If so what did you learn?
A. “No, this is the first time I have ever done research. The IRB (Internal Review Board) felt a bit intimidating at first because they can potentially ask you anything about your study. I had two wonderful mentors; Dr. Dana Rutledge and Dr. Siu-Fung Wong who helped me every step of the way. I do think research is very fun, creative, and rewarding. I always thought only scholars or academics could perform research. I now know that any clinician with an interest in bringing about positive change for patients can participate.” I would encourage all clinicians to support evidence-based practice by participating in clinical research.”

Q. Will you do an EBP/research project again?
A. “Yes and I am always looking for opportunities. Once you start a research project it tends to snowball into additional projects. Recently, St. Joseph Hospital Cancer Center received a NCI grant that will focus on many issues including survivorship and health care disparities in the Oncology population. I am looking forward to pursuing clinical trials tied to those projects”.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Kudos! Very informative article, keep up the good work!
This blog will be one of the many that I visit everyday.

Best of luck,