Disseminating a palliative care education program for ICU bedside nurses (IMPACT-ICU) across California
IMPACT- ICU (Integrating Multidisciplinary Palliative Care into the ICU) integrates palliative care into ICU care by training and supporting beside nurses to identify and address patient and family needs for symptom management, emotional support, and communication with clinicians. It was developed and refined in ICU’s at the University of California medical centers. The objective of my Sojourns Scholars Leadership project is to disseminate the IMPACT-ICU program to other California hospitals and health systems. The specific aims are: 1. Train critical care and palliative care nurses and physician leaders within ten California hospitals, representing diverse hospital types and health systems, to implement the IMPACT-ICU palliative care education program for ICU bedside nurses. 2. Mentor there leaders as they provide palliative care education and support to 600 ICU beside nurse (60 per hospital over a one year period). 3. Create a collaborative to further disseminate this training program with in health systems in California.
I have been committed to a career in palliative care since medical school when I rotated at San Diego Hospice. As I worked with palliative care clinicians, I saw the kind of difference I wanted to make in the lives of patients and their families. My Internal Medicine residency, at Duke University Medical Center, forced me to examine the meaning of palliative care in the hospital and ICU, and motivated me to career in clinical research. When I first rotated in the ICU, I was faced with many families and patients whose goals did not align with what I imagined their care plans should be. These experiences pushed me to learn communication skills to meet families where they are as opposed to where I felt they should be. In residency I also became acutely aware of the lack of evidence to guide clinical work in palliative care and communication. With the goal of building the evidence base to clarify how clinicians can support seriously ill patients and their families in acute care settings, I pursued clinical palliative care and research training at the University of Pittsburgh, followed by a research faculty position at UCSF. My research has focused on understanding how hospital clinicians can best support seriously ill patients and their families. I am now shifting my focus toward implementation science, to ensure that best practices we have identified in palliative care and communications are translated into practice. The Sojourn Scholars Leadership program will provide me with protected time and professional development in leadership and implementation science that will take my project and career to the next level: becoming a regional and national leader in palliative care implementation.