Mass General Nurses Showcase Their Research During Grand Rounds

The Munn Center for Nursing Research at Massachusetts General Hospital recently celebrated a grand round events to recognize the recipients of several recent grants and awards.

Exploring the Experience of Aromatherapy in the Acute Care Setting

Amanda Coakley, RN, PhD, FNAP, AHN-BC, Principal Investigator , Dana Cvrk, CNM, MS; Heather Fraser, RN, BSN, Jennifer J Healy, RN, BSN, ATC, Emily Dexter, RN, BSN, Michele A. O’Hara, DNP, RN, NE-BC, Joanne Empoliti, MSN, RN, ANP-BC, B. Robert Young, RPh, Tanya John, Medication Safety Coordinator Recipients of The Connell Nurse-led Team Grant

There is some evidence that inhalation of lavender, ginger, peppermint and other oils can help patients manage discomfort and symptoms associated with hospitalization.

Postoperative surgical patients and laboring obstetric patients commonly report anxiety, discomfort and nausea. 

This study will explore the use of aromatherapy to assist laboring obstetric patients and postoperative elective surgical patients to manage symptoms of nausea, anxiety, and discomfort. Provided by nurses, aromatherapy treatments will serve as an adjunct and not as a replacement for standard routine care.


Creating a Safe and Supportive Culture for the Nursing Workforce: Evaluation of the Staff Perception of Disruptive Patient Behavior Scale as a Tool to Measure Change in Staff Experience

Jennifer Repper DeLisi, RN, MSN, PCNS, Principal Investigator, Robin Lipkis-Orlando, RN, MS, NE-BC, Colleen Gonzales, RN, MSN, NE-BC, Colleen Snydeman, PhD, RN, NE-BC, Mentor Recipients of The Be Well Work Well Nursing Grant (NIOSH)

Patient and visitor violence directed toward health care workers is a complicated, serious and persistent occupational hazard.

Nursing staff are at particularly high-risk as they are the largest sector of the health care workforce and spend more time in close proximity with patients than other providers.

This study aims to use the Staff Perception of Disruptive Patient Behavior Scale (SPDPB) as a tool to measure change in staff experience with disruptive patients.

Analysis of study results will help direct institutional response to reduce the frequency and severity of disruptive events through targeted staff education, leadership coaching, and resource enhancement, with the overall goal of strengthening the culture of workforce safety.


Kirstin Dickins, PhD, AM, FNP-C and her research mentor Sara Looby, PhD, ANP-BC, FAAN

Health and Healthcare Among Older Homeless Women

Kirsten Dickins, PhD, AM, FNP-C, Recipient of the Connell Postdoctoral Fellowship in Nursing Research

In the United States, the homeless population is aging, and many economically precarious older adults are also becoming homeless for the first time.

While women are particularly vulnerable to homelessness in older age, their presence, voices, and health concerns are conspicuously absent from the literature.

Homeless women are at high risk for injury, trauma, and illness; are less likely to obtain needed healthcare; and are known to experience disparate mortality rates.

Yet, no recent studies in the United States have focused on mortality rates and causes of death among homeless women across the lifespan.

With sharp increases in deaths due to overdose–along with the aging of the United States population in general–an updated mortality study mapping changes in rates and causes of death in this vulnerable population is warranted.

Using data obtained from a state-based mortality registry paired with a large clinical data registry comprised on homeless persons, Dr. Dickins will assess mortality rates and trends, and associated factors contributing to death among homeless women.

She will wirk directly with aging homeless women in shelter-based settings to elucidate their perceptions of health, patterns of healthcare use, and perspectives on an ideal healthcare environment.  

This study represents the first phase in a longitudinal study to explore and establish patient-centered, accessible, and sustainable healthcare interventions for aging homeless women. Learn more about Dr. Dickins’ work.


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