Nurse of the Week: Registered Nurse Czarino Cecilio Treats Cancer Patients at Weill Cornell Medicine’s Multiple Myeloma Center

Nurse of the Week: Registered Nurse Czarino Cecilio Treats Cancer Patients at Weill Cornell Medicine’s Multiple Myeloma Center

Our Nurse of the Week is Czarina Cecilio, a 33-year-old registered nurse (RN) at Weill Cornell Medicine’s Multiple Myeloma Center in New York City. Multiple myeloma (MM) is a type of bone marrow cancer and in addition to performing her nursing duties, Cecilio is also responsible for a lot of paperwork because the medication administered to many MM patients is experiencing a national drug shortage.

Cecilio works 10-hour shifts on a regular basis, helping keep her patients comfortable in the midst of this drug shortage. Cecilio’s role at the Multiple Myeloma Center is Clinical Nurse Liaison. She serves as head RN of the practice and her responsibilities include educating patients on their therapy regimen and helping them get medication, supervising medical technicians, and keeping the clinic workflow organized.

However, she also spends a lot of time on the phone with manufacturers and drug providers in an effort to secure treatment for her patients. Many MM patients are treated with an intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG), but production for the medication has slowed, causing increased demand.

Cecilio tells businessinsider.com, “With myeloma, it’s an incurable disease, [but] it’s treatable, so that’s why we see these patients all the time. You get to build a relationship with these patients.”

Cecilio didn’t always want to be a nurse. She received her undergraduate degree in anthropology and then decided to go into medical research. She eventually ended up in an entry level nursing job as a medical technician, but found herself unable to answer many of her patients’ questions regarding their care, so she decided to go to nursing school. Now, she loves her work as a nurse in the multiple myeloma clinic because it allows her to form bonds with patients who are typically receiving long-term treatment.

To learn more about Czarina Cecilio, a registered nurse at Weill Cornell Medicine’s Multiple Myeloma Center in New York City, read Business Insider’s coverage of their day spent shadowing her here.

Nationally Recognized Researcher Annette B. Wysocki Named Dean of Stony Brook Nursing

Nationally Recognized Researcher Annette B. Wysocki Named Dean of Stony Brook Nursing

Stony Brook University has named Annette B. Wysocki, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean of the School of Nursing, effective August 1. Dr. Wysocki is a nursing educator, scholar, and researcher with over 30 years of experience. She joins Stony Brook from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst College of Nursing, where she served as Professor and Associate Dean for Research since 2012.

Kenneth Kaushansky, MD, MACP, Senior Vice President of Health Sciences and Dean of the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University, tells news.stonybrook.edu, “Annette was chosen from an incredibly talented pool of national candidates, yet stood out because of her clear vision about the future of our school of nursing and her impressive nursing career on many levels. This includes Annette’s many leadership and advisory roles at higher educational institutions and societies and her scholarly and research work on a national and international scale.”

Dr. Wysocki began her academic career by joining the faculty of the New York University Medical Center where she was Director of Nursing Research and a faculty member in the Department of Dermatology in the School of Medicine.  She then joined the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and served as Scientific Director of the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR) and Chief of the Wound Healing Laboratory. After leaving the NIH, Dr. Wysocki became Professor of Nursing and Surgery at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, before joining UMass Amherst.

Dr. Wysocki’s past research has helped develop the science of symptom self-management, studying the wound environment in patients with spinal cord injury, and studying the basic biology of chronic wounds. She is a lead researcher in wound healing and other topics in nursing research.

In her new role as dean of Stony Brook Nursing, Dr. Wysocki intends to continue building the school’s mission of advancing the science and practice of nursing to improve the lives of individuals, families, and the community.

To learn more about Annette B. Wysocki, PhD, RN, FAAN, who was recently named dean of the Stony Brook University School of Nursing, visit here.

Nurse of the Week: NYU Nursing Director Named Alzheimer’s Ambassador to New York Senator Chuck Schumer

Nurse of the Week: NYU Nursing Director Named Alzheimer’s Ambassador to New York Senator Chuck Schumer

Our Nurse of the Week is Jennifer Pettis, the associate director of the long-term care program at NICHE (Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders) in the New York University (NYU) College of Nursing. Pettis was recently named an Alzheimer’s Ambassador to Senator Chuck Schumer. 

Pettis is an expert on aging and healthcare. As an Alzheimer’s Ambassador, she will attend the annual Alzheimer’s Association Advocacy Forum in Washington, DC, as well as several district meetings with Senator Schumer’s office. She will also lead the activities of her local Alzheimer’s Congressional Team, a group of highly engaged advocates.

Pettis tells nursing.nyu.edu, “There are 5.8 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease, and that number is expected to grow to 7.1 million by 2050. In short, Alzheimer’s disease is a public health crisis, and the time to act is now. Not only do we need to find a cure for this devastating disease, but we also need to support those afflicted by it and their caregivers as we work toward a cure. Additionally, we need to ensure that health systems are prepared to provide person-centered, quality care to individuals living with Alzheimer’s.”

Alzheimer’s Ambassadors are volunteers for the Alzheimer’s Impact Movement, working to develop and advance policies to overcome Alzheimer’s disease through increased investment in research, enhanced care, and improved support. They serve as the main point of contact for specific members of Congress for issues related to dementia and Alzheimer’s. 

Pettis joined NYU Nursing and NICHE in 2018 and brings over 25 years of healthcare experience as a nurse, nurse researcher, educator, and consultant working to improve healthcare for older adults with her. 

To learn more about Jennifer Pettis, the associate director of the long-term care program at NYU Nursing who was recently named an Alzheimer’s Ambassador to Senator Chuck Schumer, visit here.  

Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies Receives $2.7M Federal Grant

Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies Receives $2.7M Federal Grant

The Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies at Hofstra University has been awarded a $2,749,151 grant by the US Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to create a nursing pipeline for underserved communities.

The grant is titled Creating an Integrative Family Nurse Practitioner Value Based Student to Practice Model, and will support the graduate nursing program’s innovative academic-practice partnership to prepare primary care advanced practice nurses to work in rural and underserved settings.

The nursing school has implemented an interprofessional learning model to train graduates in a wide array of specialties including family nurse practitioners, adult gerontology-acute care nurse practitioners, psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners, and sexual assault forensic examiners.

This is the third grant that Hofstra’s nursing school has received from the HRSA, and will help the university create a pipeline of experienced primary care nurse practitioners through 2023. The other advanced nursing education grants that the school received was $1,644,223 for Creating a Nurse Practitioner Student Transition-to-Primary Care Practice Model in 2016, and $754,236 for a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program in 2018. The nursing school has graduated 73 nurse practitioners since its inception in 2015.

Kathleen Gallo, RN, PhD, dean of the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies, tells longislandweekly.com, “This grant helps us provide enhanced education opportunities and resources to our advanced practice nurses who will enter the workforce in the specialties of primary and family care, as well as geriatrics and other clinical areas to deliver value-based care. Nurse practitioners play a vital role in the health care delivery system, as evidenced by the growing demand for their services due to an aging population and a shortage of primary care physicians.”

To learn more about the $2,749,151 grant awarded to the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies by the US Health Resources and Services Administration to create a nursing pipeline for underserved communities, visit here.

University at Buffalo Joins Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic

University at Buffalo Joins Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic

The University at Buffalo (UB) recently announced it has joined the National Academy of Medicine Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic. UB is joining more than 100 organizations who have also committed to the national effort.

The UB Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the UB Clinical Research Institute on Addictions (CRIA) have issued statements on their commitment to combatting the opioid crisis through collaborative, interdisciplinary efforts and partnerships. This includes more than 150 UB faculty members working to advance research, education, and clinical care on addiction, ranging from basic science to clinical and translational studies and health services research.

According to www.buffalo.edu, CRIA is a research center of the University at Buffalo focused on addressing the causes, consequences, prevention, and treatment of substance use disorders.  Its scientists are members of multiple departments and schools within UB, allowing CRIA to explore interdisciplinary methods to address addiction issues.  

The university released the following statement following their announcement: “Our clinical faculty see firsthand the damaged patients who present to our emergency rooms, clinics, private offices—and our morgues. The Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences hosts one of the nation’s first fellowships in addiction medicine as well as a fellowship in pain medicine, training future clinical leaders and researchers in the field of addiction.”

CRIA has also outlined the steps its researchers and clinicians have taken to address the opioid epidemic:

  • To address the epidemic in high-need counties throughout the state, CRIA works with UB’s Department of Family Medicine and the State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services
  • UB has spearheaded novel educational programs that have trained several thousand health professional students in UB’s School of Nursing, School of Dental Medicine, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Public Health and Health Professions and the Jacobs School
  • The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences has developed an online continuing educational program focused on pain management, palliative care and addiction, which is mandated for New York State physicians who prescribe controlled substances
  • Continuing education programs developed and offered by CRIA about the opioid epidemic provide important information for the community
  • UB is a key partner with Erie County’s Opioid Epidemic Task Force

To learn more about the University of Buffalo’s announcement that it has joined the National Academy of Medicine Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic, visit here.

Columbia Nursing Discovers Link Between Healthcare Associated Infections and Nurse Understaffing

Columbia Nursing Discovers Link Between Healthcare Associated Infections and Nurse Understaffing

The Columbia University School of Nursing recently conducted a unit-level staffing study, which found an association between nurse understaffing and healthcare associated infections (HAIs) in patients. Their findings demonstrate that understaffing increases the risk of HAIs, ultimately adding billions to healthcare costs annually. 

The study examined data from over 100,000 patients and found that 15 percent of patient-days had one shift understaffed with registered nurses (defined as registered nurse [RN] staffing below 80 percent of the unit median for a shift) and 6.2% had both day and night shifts RN understaffed. Patients on units with both shifts understaffed with RNs were 15 percent more likely to develop HAIs on or after the third day of exposure to these periods of understaffing than were patients in units with both day and night shifts adequately staffed. The study also found units were understaffed with nursing supporting staff, defined as licensed practical nurses and nurse assistants, and this also increased patients’ risk of HAIs.

Lead author Jingjing Shang, PhD, associate professor at Columbia Nursing, stated in a press release, “As they often serve as coordinators within multidisciplinary health care teams, nurses play a critical role in preventing HAIs, which is a top priority for improving quality of care and reducing hospital costs. Being at the forefront of infection control and prevention is a unique responsibility and opportunity for nurses, and our study shows that hospital administrators should ensure adequate nurse staffing to provide the safest patient care. This could be achieved through better nurse recruitment and retention practices, together with methods of managing burnout and fatigue.”

The study found that in understaffed units, nurses experienced excessive workloads. Distressed working conditions may compromise infection prevention practices and surveillance activities intended to recognize the signs and symptoms of infection. Continuous understaffing may negatively impact nurses’ wellbeing as well as patient care.

To learn more about Columbia Nursing’s study on the link between healthcare associated infections and nurse understaffing, visit here

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