Recent Submissions

  • Pen Pal Project to Write Away Isolation: An IRB-approved Project Aimed at Decreasing Isolation During a Global Pandemic

    Barfield, Kailey; de la Cruz, Jennifer; Lepp, Erin F. (2021)
    As the COVID-19 pandemic radically upended the daily lives and routines of many people, those considered vulnerable faced increased physical isolation due to efforts of increased protection. While interventions such as social distancing have been appropriate to maintain physical health, mental health has taken the brunt of the pandemic. To create connections while maintaining safe physical distance, a letter writing project was created between Mercer Physician Assistant Students and volunteers in the community. This project was created for the Paul Ambrose Scholars Program in which students in medical professions are selected to design a community health project focusing on one of the Leading Health Indicators (LHI) of Healthy People 2020. Suicide was the LHI chosen for this project. As depression increases among elderly, isolated individuals during the pandemic, the risk of suicide increases as well. Letter writing is a cheap, easy way to maintain emotional connections with others despite social distancing guidelines. This project has been IRB approved and included nineteen Mercer Physician Assistant (PA) students and nineteen volunteer letter recipients throughout the United States. A screening tool was used to assess depression levels of volunteer letter recipients both prior to and after receiving letters from PA students over the course of 4-5 months. This poster is a summary of the research project.
  • The Progression From My ePortfolio To My Writing Major

    Cantrell, April (2021)
    Developing an ePortfolio purposefully walks you through the process of understanding and conceptualizing your general education and major courses with your specific path followed to develop and explain your major. Simply knowing that I wanted to write or be a writer wasn't necessarily specific enough. Why did I want to be a writer? Did I have a purpose? The ePortifolio was a light to the path that helped me understand that I want to write to heal others as they read and to self-heal the writers emotional struggles. Narrowing the broad concept of a major in writing to the narrow concept of writing with the intention to heal others and myself through writing is the result of my ePortfolio.
  • Capstone ePortfolios and Synthetic Learning

    Winkler, Andrea (2021)
    ePortfolios are considered the eleventh high-impact practice by the AACU. Done well, they do not merely store artifacts that record a student’s progress. They actively encourage students to reflect on their work and to synthesize it. They focus attention on the process of learning, and make that learning visible to student, faculty, and others alike. The LBST 498 ePortfolio required students to explain their degree to the public in a succinct format. The process of selecting artifacts, explaining them, and using them to make meaning for themselves of their degree helped students actively to synthesize their experiences with the perspectives they had gained through their concentrations and core courses. By demonstrating recent ePortfolios, we intend to document the initial success of the ePortfolio program, and generate discussion about the role of reflection in increasing student success.
  • Under The Law (The Invention of Race and Contemporary Life Experiences)

    Crews, Gregory (2021)
    Six Hours of Separation and a Lawless Legal Legacy: A Tale of Two Men and the Atlanta Police June 2020 “I’m terrified at the moral apathy – the death of the heart which is happening in my country. These people have deluded themselves for so long, that they really don’t think I’m human. I base this on their conduct, not on what they say, and this means that they have become, in themselves, moral monsters.” James Baldwin The Wendy’s on University Avenue in Atlanta is closed. There is a vehicle parked in the drive-through. It is around 11 p.m. on June 23, 2020. A man is asleep in the vehicle. He is black. The up-scale hotel six miles away in downtown Atlanta closes its doors at 2 a.m. in compliance with the CDC’s protocol for dealing with COVID. Five professional black men maintain security. It is June 24, 2020, around 4 a.m. Outside at the entrance a man is drunk and demands entry. The security staff asks if he is a guest. He answers in the negative. The staff asks if he is visiting a guest in the hotel. He answers in the negative. He is irate. He wants to enter the hotel. The security staff explains the COVID policy of the hotel. They do not allow him to enter. He threatens to “beat the asses” of the security staff. He tries unsuccessfully to push past hotel guests entering the hotel. He is white. The police are summoned. A policeman arrives at Wendy’s. He is white. A policeman arrives at the hotel. He is black. The Wendy’s policeman awakens the sleeping black man. The policeman asks him to move his car to a parking space and calls for back-up help. The man quietly moves his car. The black policeman approaches the white man and speaks kindly to him. Another white policeman arrives at the Wendy’s. The white policemen ask the man how much alcohol he has consumed. He explains that he has just come from his four-year-old daughter’s birthday party. The black policeman at the hotel manages to calm the aggressive white man. The white policemen at Wendy’s ask the black man to get out of his car. He does what they ask. They administer a sobriety test. The black policeman at the hotel does not administer a sobriety test. The man at Wendy’s tells the white policemen that he has friends nearby and will walk there. The black policeman at the hotel informs the security team that the man lives close to the hotel. The white policemen at Wendy’s tell the man he cannot walk to his friend’s house. They take out their handcuffs. The black policeman at the hotel helps the white man into his patrol car and drives him home. The man at Wendy’s panics and runs. The police claim he grabbed the taser from one of them and shot at them. They shoot him twice in the back. They handcuff him. He is bleeding. The black man dies while the white policeman stands on his back. On October 23, 1705 at a General Assembly in the city of Williamsburg, Virginia a law was passed that reads as follow: And if any slave resist his master, or owner, or other person, by his or her order, correcting such slave, and shall happen to be killed in such correction, it shall not be accounted felony; but the master, owner and every such other person so giving correction, shall be free and acquit of all punishment and accusation for the same, as if such accident has never happened: And also, if any negro, mulatto, or Indian, he or she so offering, shall, for every such offense, proved by the oath of the party, receive on his or her bare back, thirty lashes, well laid on; cognizable by a justice of the peace for that count wherein such offence shall be committed. What does it feel like to be a man of color in our current society? It feels like the first three minutes on a roller coaster. It begins when you hear that deafening click of the safety belt that locks you into that uncomfortable, dense seat, and the trembling motor starts to hum. At that moment you understand something is about to happen, and you are no longer in control. The machine slowly begins to move forward and then creeps up the steep hill very slowly until it reaches a serene place almost at the top where it pauses for a slight moment. You instantly catch a view of the breathtaking skyline. Then all of a sudden, your stomach feels like it’s in the back of your throat and your breath escapes you. You realize your only option is to hold on for dear life and or just enjoy the ride. I realize that my fascinating dark brown skin is that uncomfortable seat, and fear is the motor that begins to hum. The fear in question is the inability to trust the people designated to protect you. Who would ever think that falling asleep in the common area on a college campus, falling asleep in your car, barbecuing in the local park, or walking around in your front yard could cause someone to call -the police on you? Men of color have to always be aware of these potentialities. My first encounter with the men in blue happened on a warm autumn evening when I was in my early twenties. The sun had begun to go down, but it wasn’t yet dark enough for the street lights to come on. My sister and I lived in an apartment in Forestville, Maryland, located in Prince George’s (P.G.) county. P. G. County’s law enforcement had a reputation for being very aggressive in their interactions with people of color. Across the street from our apartment complex was a Seven Eleven convenience store. It was a hot afternoon. Hoping to cool off, I walked to the Seven Eleven to get myself a cherry slushy. I grooved to the music on the radio en route to the store. About a hundred meters from the Seven Eleven, I watched a police car abruptly enter the apartment complex. The police cruiser quickly approached me and stopped. Uninterested in what the officer was doing, I continued to pursue the slushy. The young officer aggressively jumped out of the vehicle with his hand on his weapon and began yelling at me. I looked around and felt a little confused about why this officer had yelled and walked towards me in such a confrontational manner. He asked me where I was going. I told him, and then asked him why he had approached me. He shouted out, “Shut the Fuck up! I’m asking the questions.” I asked him if he wanted to see my ID. I reached in my pocket, pulled out my ID, and gave it to him. I placed my military ID on top of my driver’s license to see what his reaction would be. He snatched the ID cards out of my hand and held both up so that he could see them better. I watched his entire demeanor toward me change. His harsh, cold face softened to a warm, devilish grin. He said, “You know, my brother is in the Marine Corps.” I looked at him sternly and said, “Don’t patronize me. Why did you stop me?” He claimed he had received a call, and I fit the description of the person from the call. I asked him what was the person’s description--a black man? “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” James Baldwin
  • It takes two quad tendons to tango: A case report about dancing to recovery post spontaneous bilateral quad tendon rupture and repair

    Iskhakov, Vladislav; McMahon, Tim J. (2021)
    Abstract: Spontaneous quad tendon ruptures and resulting surgical repairs have shown to be disabling. Instances of bilateral quadriceps tendon ruptures (BQTR), although a rare occurrence, is more debilitating for the patient, making it harder to treat. Despite its rare occurrence, contemporary research shows a steady increase in incidences of all tendon ruptures, including BQTR, hypothesized to stem from more active lifestyles in the adult population as life expectancy increases. Purpose: This case report focuses on ballroom dance specific intervention strategies used to achieve a full return to amateur ballroom dancing. This case features a non-simultaneous instance of BQTR, which required surgery on a 69 year old, relatively healthy male patient with a strong desire to return to ballroom dance activities. Outcomes: Outcomes used to measure patient’s progress includes lower extremity functional scale, patient specific functional scale, and global rating of change scale Discussion: BQTR is an extremely rare occurrence, providing a unique feature to this case. The therapeutic approach used to reach the patient’s goals is also unique in that it allowed for challenges in strength, proprioception, balance, and ROM, with dance specific activities throughout the protected phased approach which considered HOAC model of healing. Dance specific activity, as well as therapeutic alliance, have been shown to have great benefits with regards to functional outcomes as well as fall risk.
  • Finding Clarity Through My ePortfolio (Capstone ePortfolios and Synthetic Learning)

    Adams, Brooke (2021)
    This presentation showcases some of the ePortfolios created by senior Liberal Studies majors. To improve students’ reflective skills and increase their chances of creating effective syntheses of their work to date, the Liberal Studies Department began using ePortfolios in the major. These student ePortfolios represent the results of the first time seniors in LBST 498 (Senior Capstone) used the ePortfolios. ePortfolios are considered the eleventh high-impact practice by the AACU. Done well, they do not merely store artifacts that record a student’s progress. They actively encourage students to reflect on their work and to synthesize it. They focus attention on the process of learning, and make that learning visible to student, faculty, and others alike. The LBST 498 ePortfolio required students to explain their degree to the public in a succinct format. The process of selecting artifacts, explaining them, and using them to make meaning for themselves of their degree helped students actively to synthesize their experiences with the perspectives they had gained through their concentrations and core courses. By demonstrating recent ePortfolios, we intend to document the initial success of the ePortfolio program, and generate discussion about the role of reflection in increasing student success. This presentation showcases some of the ePortfolios created by senior Liberal Studies majors. To improve students’ reflective skills and increase their chances of creating effective syntheses of their work to date, the Liberal Studies Department began using ePortfolios in the major. These student ePortfolios represent the results of the first time seniors in LBST 498 (Senior Capstone) used the ePortfolios. ePortfolios are considered the eleventh high-impact practice by the AACU. Done well, they do not merely store artifacts that record a student’s progress. They actively encourage students to reflect on their work and to synthesize it. They focus attention on the process of learning, and make that learning visible to student, faculty, and others alike. The LBST 498 ePortfolio required students to explain their degree to the public in a succinct format. The process of selecting artifacts, explaining them, and using them to make meaning for themselves of their degree helped students actively to synthesize their experiences with the perspectives they had gained through their concentrations and core courses. By demonstrating recent ePortfolios, we intend to document the initial success of the ePortfolio program, and generate discussion about the role of reflection in increasing student success.
  • Recovery and Discovery: Developing a trauma-sensitive theology model which informs wholistic pastoral care for African American Women

    Stubbs, Tiffany (2021)
    Abstract: This research study seeks to examine the experience and responses of trauma within the realms of intersectionality and trauma informed care for African American women. The criticality of examining the duality of trauma and theology is filtered through a literature review and theological discourse. There is evidence of a correlation between the StrongBlackWoman schema and intergenerational epigenetic trauma. The trauma of living through the intersectional lanes of what it means to be an African American woman has consequently imbued African American Women with an obligation to bear the burden of strength and resiliency. This obligation has had detrimental effects on African American women’s physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. In order to provide space for transformative healing, I have suggested a construct of pastoral care model that encompasses a trauma-sensitive theological approach as a pathway to transformative healing. The goal of the pastoral care model is to provide strategies of recovery from trauma and discover ways to cope.
  • Usability Study on MyChart Mobile Health Application

    Ahmed, Nasra (2021)
    With technology constantly growing it is important for the gap between patients and their healthcare providers to close. Mobile health applications have made it easier for patients to access their personal health information at the tip of their fingers where and when it is needed. It is important for patients to be able to access this information even when they are not present with their healthcare provider. By doing so, they patients are able to be engaged and make informed decisions about their health. There were many usability problems associated with MyChart that required a usability testing. Some of these problems were that poor navigation, too many steps, and undetected errors. The purpose of this project was to test the user interface of the MyChart mobile health application against its usability issues. Conducting a usability test gave me the opportunity to determine and identify some of the participants issues as it relates to the mobile health application. It was important to observe and conduct this study so that I can gather the results to determine the efficiency and effective on the mobile application with their personal experience. As a result of this project I was able to determine how certain usability issues made a difference in the users overall experience with the mobile health application. I was also able to use the 10 usability heuristics and evaluate them against the MyChart mobile health application.
  • Analysis of Student Roles in COVID-19 Contact Tracing and Case Investigation Efforts

    Hernandez, Arlette; Batten, Ashley; Thomas, Joy (2021)
    In December of 2019, Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was first identified in Wuhan, China and would be marked as the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. COVID-19 is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and is most commonly transmitted via person to person through exposure to respiratory droplets. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention issued an agency-wide response that involved several guidelines for local Health Departments to implement disease tracking strategies to mitigate the spread of the virus. The practice of contact tracing has been continuously supported as a procedure for the control of low-prevalence infectious diseases by identifying individuals who may have been exposed to a person with suspected or confirmed infection of a pathogen. In the COVID-19 response, the "contacts" of confirmed COVID-19 cases were referred by public health authorities to isolate or quarantine themselves during their possible infectious period. In April of 2020, Mercer University's Department of Public Health informed their Master of Public Health student body of their partnership with the Georgia Department of Public Health. Since then, 18 students have participated in contact tracing across Georgia. Some students have used these opportunities for practicum completion, and some as part-time positions. Students were given the opportunity to highlight their experiences as a Contact Tracer and lend their perspective about its effectiveness in controlling the spread of COVID-19.
  • Assessment of a Best Practice Alert in Managing Patients on Anticoagulation

    Olocha, Queen O.; Patel, Sweta; Elliott, Jennifer (2021)
    Estimated 900,000 patients in the United States and nearly 1 million patients worldwide have Venous Thromboembolism (VTE). Untreated VTE can lead to long-term morbidity and mortality with an increased risk of stroke, heart failure, and death. The use of Best Practice Alerts (BPAs) to encourage prophylaxis will reduce the frequency of VTE among high-risk hospitalized patients as well as educating medical clinicians and adhering to guidelines. BPAs are clinical support tools accessible through EHR to alert the clinicians about a particular element of a patient's care, such as improper dosing, platelet counts, high serum creatinine, infections, blood transfusions, or overuse of testing. The usage of BPAs integrated with the EHR can bring attention to clinicians when prescribing anticoagulants to non-indicated patients and better educate physicians. Single-center, retrospective, chart review study assessed eligible adult patients who were prescribed anticoagulants for VTE prophylaxis. Eligible adult patients were 18 years old and older and were at increased risk for venous thromboembolism. The following were determined: the accuracy of the BPAs firing related to VTE prophylaxis and the providers' acceptance of BPA recommendation. A VTE prophylaxis report was processed through EPIC� at Grady Memorial Hospital between July 27, 2019 � August 26, 2019. One hundred patients were identified, and 207 BPAs were fired during this period. Electronic orders were searched for VTE prophylaxis and mechanical prophylactic measures, including sequential compression devices. Patient notes were screened for past/present medical history, accidents, providers, surgeries/procedures, length of stay, or social history. A list of active and discontinued medications was also screened for the presence of prophylactic pharmacologic measures, including UFH/Lovenox, aspirin, DOACs, or Warfarin. One hundred patients identified and 207 BPAs. The number of BPAs was fired per unique patient weekly and by floor unit. The firing of the BPAs related to VTE prophylaxis was 94.5% accuracy for 36 patients. The provider could not prescribe each unique patient with anticoagulation therapy due to having PCI, dementia, or timing when the BPA fired. During the study period, BPA was accurately fired and assessed. The assessment showed that VTE prophylaxis was not needed due to a specific event that the patient may have had. This specific BPA improved the appropriate management of anticoagulation for VTE prophylaxis in patients.
  • Use of Progressive Neurodynamic Exercises in Conservative Treatment of Acute Lumbar Radiculopathy

    O'Neill, Kathleen; Christ, Tom; Collier, Beth (2021)
    Background: Radiculopathy occurs when there is compression of the nerve at the level of the spinal nerve root. The clinical presentation of radiculopathy depends on the level of spinal compression but involves corresponding diminished reflex, impaired dermatomal sensation, and myotomal weakness. Current research supports conservative physical therapy management of acute low back pain with a symptom modulation approach including manual therapy, directional preference exercises, or traction. The objective of this case report is to explore the effectiveness of incorporating progressive neurodynamic exercises into physical therapy treatment of acute lumbar radiculopathy. Case Description: A 26-year-old female patient presents to an outpatient physical therapy clinic with complaints of right lower extremity weakness, numbness, and pain. Myotomal, dermatomal, and reflex testing revealed signs and symptoms consistent with L5-S1 lumbar radiculopathy. The patient was conservatively treated with progressive neurodynamic exercises in addition to traction and other manual therapy techniques. Patient saw significant improvements in lower extremity neurodynamics, pain, and function following 14 sessions of interventions. Discussion: Further research involving larger, randomized control trials are needed to explore whether utilizing progressive neurodynamic exercises should be more regularly incorporated into existing guidelines for conservative management of acute lumbar radiculopathy.
  • Does the Use of Health Apps to Monitor Hypertension Improve the Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices of African-Americans towards Hypertension Self- and Active-Management

    Lindsey, Jacquetta; Ramadan, Awatef A. Ben (2021)
    Showcase: Does the Use of Health Apps to Monitor Hypertension Improve the Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices of African-Americans towards Hypertension Self- and Active-Management First Author: Jacquetta Lindsey Co-author: Awatef Ben Ramadan Background: Despite the many medical advancements available today, cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death in the African American community. Hypertension is considered the most modifiable cardiovascular disease, and African Americans are disproportionately affected by this disease � 43% compared to 28% of White Americans. Study Aim: To determine if the knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) of African Americans towards hypertension self-management and active engagement in the healthcare process improved with the use of a mobile health application to monitor their condition. Methods: Study participants were recruited from community-based resources. Participants first completed a pre-survey to determine their baseline KAP. Next, they downloaded the AVAX Blood Pressure Diary to daily monitor their blood pressure. Lastly, participants completed the post-survey and system user satisfaction (SUS) survey on the blood pressure application. Results: Majority of the participants were women (70%) with 50% on medication for their hypertension. Most of the participants (87.5%) believed that their hypertension was better managed after using the health app. The average SUS score for the hypertension mobile health application was 89.75. Conclusion: It appears that the mobile health application assisted participants with monitoring their blood pressure daily and being aware of changes that needed to be made to improve their self-management.
  • Assessment of Mercer University Students' perceptions and Attitudes about the University's Sudden transfer to the Total Online Learning Environment due to COVID-19 Pandemic

    Ramadan, Awatef A. Ben (2021)
    The study investigator constructed a survey tool to assess and evaluate the students' reactions to the sudden and massive transformation of the Mercer learning environment. Study Aims: To assess Atlanta College of Professional Advancement students' perceptions and attitudes about the sudden transfer to the total online learning environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The results of this study are expected to: � Collect relevant and robust evidence on the massive and sudden transformation's influence on our students. Therefore, we could help our leaders and policymakers plan, tweak, and issue effective and efficient evidence-based policies and interventions that suit our students' preferences and expectations now and help them prepare and control similar crises in the future. The students' opinions, attitudes, and perceptions are important for us to be sure that we are meeting their expectations, enabling them to attain their courses' learning objectives, and serving them smoothly and efficiently throughout this health crisis. Study design: A cross-sectional descriptive study targeted all undergraduate and graduate students of Atlanta College of Professional Advancement, used an online self-administered survey. Survey: It is a structured questionnaire with closed-ended questions. The study tool composed of 54 structured questions. Data Analysis: The survey link has been disseminated through mercer emails to the participants. The survey has published from March 24, 2021 to the present. In this poster, we present the results that we retrieved from the survey monkey's results link from March 24 to April 1, 2021.
  • Topical and Transdermal Iontophoretic Delivery of Methotrexate in Healthy and Psoriatic Human Skin

    Vora, Deepal; Somayaji, Mahadevabharath R.; German, Carrie; Banga, Ajay K. (2021)
    Psoriasis is a condition of the skin which involves scales, dry patches, and inflammation. Methotrexate (logP: -0.236, MW: 454.44 g/mol) is administered orally or intravenously to treat psoriasis. The first pass metabolism and systemic side effects associated can be avoided by transdermal delivery. We investigated the iontophoretic delivery of methotrexate using healthy and psoriatic human skin to understand the effect of skin�s disease condition on topical and transdermal delivery. In vitro permeation testing using vertical Franz diffusion cell were conducted. Cathodal iontophoresis (0.5 mA/sq.cm for 4 h) delivered a significantly higher total amount of methotrexate into the skin and receptor when compared to that delivered by passive diffusion and anodal iontophoresis. A current density of 0.2 mA/sq.cm using cathodal iontophoresis and 10mg/mL donor concentration was optimized to obtain the target delivery through healthy human skin. There was no significant difference in receptor delivery for psoriatic skin as compared to healthy skin, while significantly higher methotrexate delivery in skin was observed for psoriatic skin as compared to healthy skin. Thus, cathodal iontophoresis delivered a significantly higher total amount of methotrexate as compared to passive diffusion and anodal iontophoresis. Significantly higher delivery in skin and hence significantly higher total delivery was observed for psoriatic skin as compared to healthy skin.
  • A Novel Diagnostic Method for Detection and Quantitation of Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning in Humans

    Vakkalanka, Mani Deepika; Knaack, Jennifer S.; Strom, Grady J. (2021)
    Paralytic shellfish toxins(PSTs) are potent neurotoxins which bind to the voltage gated sodium channels and prevent the conduction of action potentials leading to respiratory paralysis and death. Gonyautoxins(GTXs) 1,2,3,4 are the most potent PSTs and testing them in human matrices is the best approach to quantify the exposures. Here, we describe a solid phase extraction method for extracting GTXs from human plasma using HILIC HPLC-MS/MS analysis. Pooled plasmas were spiked with GTXs and extracted using strong cationic exchange cartridges. These cartridges were conditioned with methanol and acetate buffer and eluted with 5% ammonium hydroxide in methanol. Calibrants were prepared at the following concentration ranges: GTX1 8.13-517.66 ng/mL, GTX2 6.98-473.25 ng/mL, GTX3 2.96-200.68 ng/mL and GTX4 2.56-162.91 ng/mL. Eight plasma specimens were spiked with toxin at a concentration of 173.85ng/ml. All the samples were extracted and injected onto HPLC-MS/MS for analysis. The developed method was validated according to FDA guidance for bioanalytical method validation. The method showed good percent accuracies for all the toxins: GTX1 95-104%, GTX2 92-114%, GTX3 92-117%, GTX4 92-107%. Precision ranged from 3.5 to 10.9% for GTX1, 3.03 to 11.25% for GTX2, 3.01 to 12.72 for GTX3 and 2.08 to 10.49 for GTX4. Recovery of GTXs from specimen plasmas were between 83.27% to 110.55%. We have successfully developed a fast and simple diagnostic method accessible to common clinical laboratories.
  • Technology Implementation: How it Reduces the Transmission of HIV/AIDs in Low-income/Rural Communities

    Walker, Brittany (2021)
    Sexuality, race, age, education, and socioeconomic status are all actors in HIV transmission. In a sense, socioeconomic status encompasses all factors which directly affect the quality of life and privileges offered to people. The lack of resources in low-income communities is directly linked to risk behavior; people who lack resources are more likely to participate in drug use and high-risk sexual behaviors. Also, individuals who experience homelessness are more likely to engage in sexual behaviors in exchange for money, housing, and food are also at a higher risk of contracting/transmitting HIV; this is also the case for people who lack nutritional resources. Though it cannot be said that poverty causes HIV, poverty is highly correlated with HIV infection rates. Implementing technology utilization in clinics within impoverished communities can positively impact subjects at a higher risk of contracting and transmitting the disease. By combining technology and education, access to health care and other resources are accessible to at-risk subjects.
  • The Use of Metformin in Breast Cancer Treatment in Non-Diabetic Women

    Weintraub, Taylor; Mattingly, Jill (2021)
    Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death of women in the United States, with approximately 245,000 new cases being diagnosed each year. The current primary treatment is lumpectomy or total mastectomy, radiation therapy, along with adjuvant hormone and chemotherapy as indicated for metastatic disease. While each of these invasive treatments are effective at killing cancer cells, they are extremely toxic to every cell in the patient�s body. Metformin, a biguanide, is the most commonly prescribed drug for diabetes mellitus type 2. It�s mechanism of action works by decreasing the amount of glucose synthesized in the liver and increasing insulin sensitivity in muscle cells. Studies have already shown that diabetic patients taking metformin have a decreased risk of developing breast cancer, in addition to a better prognosis in those diagnosed with breast cancer. However, there has been no conclusion about the benefit of metformin in non-diabetic patients with breast cancer. This review presentation describes the numerous proposed anti-tumor mechanisms of metformin, such as its ability to enhance the effects chemotherapy, and inhibit cancer cell growth before and after it has begun. Metformin is a well-tolerated, inexpensive and safe medication. If its effectiveness is proven as an adjuvant treatment, breast cancer patients could reach remission with less harmful radiation and chemotherapy.
  • Head Above Water: A Study of K-12 Teachers' Perspectives on Emergency Remote Learning during the COVID-19 Pandemic

    Friedrich, Jami; Perrotta, Katherine (2021)
    In March of 2020, school districts across the country shifted to emergency remote teaching in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, school districts that closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year are indefinitely continuing online instruction or incorporating a hybrid model for the 2020-2021 school year. Although scholarship exists with regard to the impact of school closures due to unexpected events such as natural, there is a need to understand how this pandemic has posed specific challenges and benefits for teachers. The purpose of this research is to examine K-12 teachers' perspectives about their experiences transitioning to emergency remote teaching as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The major findings show that teachers experienced greater flexibility with regard to content and elimination of state exams. However, teachers expressed that they faced significant challenges with regard to promoting student engagement, maintaining communication, and ensuring students had access to technology and tools for remote learning.
  • Introducing a Mitigation Strategy into EHR Systems for Drug Shortages

    Nisanian, Meetra T.; Baskaran, Vikraman (2021)
    Nationally, hospitals are feeling the effects of the drug shortages on the quality of patient care. These shortages pose strenuous difficulties on patients, clinicians, and healthcare facilities. These shortages can be caused by many factors including, manufacturing problems lack of raw materials, business decisions, regulatory problems, as well as other external factors. The lack of available medications can cause adverse outcomes due to the need for substitution of commonly used medications that can compromise or delay procedures and lead to medication errors. This also places a burden on the hospital and the hospital staff as well. A mitigation strategy needs to be introduced in order to allow the facility in order to act efficiently in the midst of a crisis. The Rehabilitation Hospital of Southern New Mexico, located in the city of Las Cruces, is a specialized facility that provides rehabilitative services to patients recovering from disabilities causes by illnesses, injuries, or chronic medical conditions. This organization is a member of a large hospital network system known as Ernest Health; However, the hospital is managed locally in order to serve the needs of the community. When a drug shortage occurred, the hospital was not prepared. Therefore, introducing a mitigation strategy was vital for the assurance of continuation of quality patient care.
  • Improving Nursing Documentation in Patients With Sudden Cardiac Arrest Requiring Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) in Long Term Acute Care

    Abdulkadir, Zeinab; Baskaran, Vikraman (2021)
    Healthcare documentation is a very important required task when working in any healthcare setting. From every patient encounter, prescription refill, and laboratory testing; all healthcare providers are required to document. As a Nurse, accurate documentation is vital in improving patient safety and quality of care. In emergency situations, such as a sudden cardiac arrest requiring cardiopulmonary resuscitation, precise documentation is rarely accomplished, due to the hectic nature of the patient's health status. In many circumstances, healthcare providers have witnessed the designated nurse attempting to document interventions on a napkin, whiteboard, or glove. The patient primary nurse is responsible for documenting a narrative note in the patient chart after the incident. The subjective nature of the nursing narrative note after CPR is often inaccurate, incomplete, or lacks details. Several research studies have highlighted the significance of CPR, the assessment of time keeping roles in cardiac arrests, and the evaluation of nursing documentation. This research study will analyze and provide possible solutions to the challenges faced by Nurses in long term acute settings during the documentation process on patients with sudden cardiac arrest requiring CPR. This study will evaluate, anonymous and randomly extracted, narrative notes from patient�s charts. The analysis will identify a CPR documentation template that can be implemented to reconstruct and improve the documentation process. This effort will promote efficiency and accuracy in capturing, analyzing, and reporting of data in resuscitation science to help improve patient outcomes and workflow.

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