Research Grant – Funded Projects

2017-2018 Funded Projects

Lindsay Schwartz M.D.
UCLA Pediatrics Residency Program, Los Angeles, CA

Creation of a Cancer Survivorship Curriculum for Pediatric Resident Physicians

The purpose of this project is to implement and evaluate a formal cancer survivorship curriculum aimed at all UCLA pediatrics resident physicians that addresses perceived deficiencies in caring for pediatric cancer survivors in a variety of inpatient and outpatient general pediatrics and subspecialty environments. Because of the role that a pediatrics resident can serve as a primary care provider, the curriculum reflects the perspective of the primary pediatrician. It is hypothesized that residents’ knowledge and clinical skills required to care for pediatric cancer survivors as well as their attitudes on the importance of training in cancer survivorship issues will be will be poor to moderate prior to initiation of the curriculum. The research team postulates these measurements will increase by a statistically significant degree following the intervention.

Lauren Ritchie M.D.
University of Colorado Pediatrics Residency Program, Aurora CO

Resident Academic Half Day: Perspectives of Faculty Teachers

The specific aim of this study is to gain a better understanding of the perspectives of faculty who teach at a newly implemented curriculum model, resident Academic Half Day (AHD). Although a growing body of literature describes the impact of AHD on residents, the experiences of AHD faculty teachers remain unclear. Teaching at AHD differs from noon conference in several important aspects. AHD is a longer block of time (reported duration varying from 90 minutes to 4 hours),which may present more challenges for faculty with other obligations. In addition, active resident learning is encouraged; this may require teaching methods that are different from the one-hour power point lecture traditionally given at noon conference. Furthermore, challenges exist with selection of included topics, as fewer total hours over the course of a year are dedicated to AHD compared to noon conference. Perspectives of faculty teachers at AHD are important to understand if AHD is going to be a successful long-term curriculum model for pediatric residents.

Melodie Miranda M.D.
Harbor UCLA Pediatrics Residency Program, Torrance CA

Use of Local Guideline and Dynamic Educational Support to Optimize Housestaff Management of Inpatient Pediatric Infectious Disease

It is hypothesized that the distribution of local clinical practice guideline (CPG), alongside didactic sessions and targeted feedback from antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP) team, will improve appropriate inpatient antimicrobial management of pediatric pneumonia, urinary tract infections, cellulitis, and intra-abdominal infections. The research team will develop an educational bundle with comprehensive CPG and academic detailing comprised of antecedent didactics and focused case-based vignettes to improve appropriate antibiotic selection, dose, and duration for inpatient pediatric resident teaching services at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

2016-2017 Funded Projects

Dr. Vanessa Rivas-Lopez (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Pediatrics Residency Program; PD, Eyal Ben-Isaac, MD) will be conducting a medical education research project entitled, “The Effectiveness of a Culturally Responsive Healthcare Curriculum Developed by Residents in a Pediatric Residency Program”.

Edited Abstract. The concept of cultural responsiveness was introduced in healthcare in the 1980s and expanded in the 1990s. It was largely driven by research in health disparities and increased public awareness of racial, ethnic and socioeconomic disparities in healthcare. Despite decades of efforts in its promotion, there have been no guidelines on how to incorporate cultural responsiveness into pediatric residency training and there have been limited studies on the effectiveness of such curricula. In this study, the PI will assess the effectiveness of culturally responsiveness training at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA). The methods will include: (1) development of a curriculum on culturally responsive healthcare (intervention); (2) creation and distribution of a pre-intervention survey to assess residents’ knowledge, skills, attitudes and personal comfort level in caring for a diverse patient population; and, (3) creation and distribution of a post-intervention survey to assess the difference in residents’ knowledge, skills, attitudes and personal comfort level. The project hypothesis is that residents will have an increased level of knowledge and comfort, and improved skills in caring for patients of a diverse background following the implementation of the culturally responsive healthcare curriculum at CHLA.

Dr. Bianca Argueza (University of California San Francisco Pediatrics Residency Program; PD, Daniel C. West, MD) will lead a study entitled, “Addressing Burnout in Pediatric Residents By Incorporating a Positive Psychology Intervention into the Inpatient Handoff Curriculum”.  

Edited Abstract. Resident physicians suffer from “burnout,” a syndrome consisting of emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment that can occur among individuals who work with other people. Studies have shown that residents experience high levels of burnout and that burnout increases over the intern year. Evidence suggests that improved handoffs is associated with reductions in medical errors; as such, handoffs may be a critical time to implement interventions that reduce burnout. One potential way to reduce burnout is through psychological interventions primarily aimed at raising positive feelings, positive cognitions, or positive behavior. The PI aims to assess the feasibility, acceptability, and efficacy of incorporating an adapted version of the positive psychology exercise “Three Good Things” into the inpatient handoff curriculum. She hypothesizes that incorporating “Three Good Things” into the inpatient handoff curriculum will be a feasible, acceptable, and efficacious intervention in reducing burnout scores among pediatric residents.

Dr. Colleen Gutman (University of Washington Pediatrics Residency Program; PD, Heather McPhillips, MD, MPH) will direct a study entitled, “Pilot Implementation of Inpatient Reach Out and Read”.

Edited Abstract. Reach Out and Read (ROR) is a well-researched evidenced-based model where doctors give books to children and discuss the importance of reading with families. There are currently no ROR programs in inpatient settings in the United States, and this is a missed opportunity to discuss reading with families and promote reading as a way to promote literacy and family relationships. The benefits of reading with children are numerous, yet during hospitalizations most families and children spend more time on individual screens than sharing a book. Access to televisions and screen time in the hospital is ubiquitous; hospitalized children spend the majority of their awake time with screen media on, and caregivers have reported that their children engaged in more screen media while hospitalized than they would at home. In her study, the PI will address the following Aims: (1) educate residents and medical students about using books and promoting early childhood development through inpatient ROR; (2) incorporate resident teaching about developmental assessment into the inpatient general pediatrics rotation for medical students; (3) measure caregiver, resident and medical student responses to the program; and, (4) examine the feasibility of incorporating ROR into the inpatient setting. The PI hypothesizes that participation in inpatient ROR will benefit residents and medical students as well as caregivers of child patients.