Please see attached NIH biosketch. In brief, my long-term research goal is to develop evidence-based psychosocial behavioral interventions that enhance patient and caregiver engagement in various preparatory factors for the end-of-life (e.g., advance care planning, serious illness communication) across the cancer illness trajectory, with an emphasis on enhanced family caregiver engagement in these preparatory factors as a critical component of improved care delivery and outcomes. This work stems from reflections on my extensive clinical practice experience as an oncology nurse for over a decade and my passion to make both patients and their family caregivers active partners in supportive oncology/palliative care delivery across the continuum of cancer care. My next steps in achieving this goal are to conduct a study of family caregivers of patients with cancer who have received or are currently receiving supportive oncology/palliative care services at Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center. The goal of this work would be to understand the caregivers' experiences of supportive oncology/palliative care delivery in order to identify ways of improving engagement in and implementation of this care delivery. This line of inquiry would be specifically focused toward understanding the caregivers' experiences of serious illness communication among the patient, caregiver, and healthcare provider triad. I envision this work culminating in the development of a pilot hybrid Type 2 effectiveness-implementation research study which will be conducted as a part of a K-series NIH career development award. I envision this being a communication-based intervention that leverages telehealth approaches to bring in-the-moment supportive oncology/palliative care conversations to patients and caregivers who may not otherwise have access to these services. Further, allowing space and time for these communication encounters in the home without the stressors of the clinical environment has the potential to foster more meaningful clinical interactions that better inform future care. Such lines of inquiry are in line with the cancer centers' recent investments in the palliative care program and the strategic plan to utilize technology approaches to deliver, "research and clinical expertise across Indiana as a part of the Onco-Everywhere program." (from Dr. Lee's State of the Cancer Center address).
M.S.N. - University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 12/2013
Post-doctoral Fellowship - University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 07/2021
Ph.D. - University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 05/2019