Abstracts for Session 4B

Click on a tab below to view each abstract for this concurrent session. Plenary session information is provided in the online schedule’s session description, and poster presentation abstracts are provided elsewhere.

Session 4B: Best Practices in Training Healthcare Professionals in Oncology

Friday, 16 September 2016
Room: Georgetown/Congressional


4B-1: Experiential Training in Cancer Nanomedicine for Undergraduates

Anne van de Ven1, Karen Burns White2, Srinivas Sridhar1
1Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA; 2Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA, USA

Abstract: 1. Background/Purpose: The Cancer Nanomedicine Co-ops for Undergraduate Research Experience (CaNCURE) program was established to attract, retain, and encourage young scientists and engineers, particularly those from underrepresented minorities, to pursue careers in cancer research. 2. Description: Through a unique academic–clinical partnership between Northeastern University and the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center, supported by the National Cancer Institute 1R25CA174650, the CaNCURE program provides undergraduates with experiential training at the interface of nanotechnology, cancer biology, and medicine. Trainees are paired with a faculty mentor for a 6-month hands-on research experience. Key components of the program include one-on-one mentoring in cancer nanomedicine, hypothesis-driven research within an NCI-funded laboratory, professional development through participation in workshops, seminars, and networking, preparation of a research e-portfolio, and presentation of research findings. 3. Evaluation: Thirty trainees have been recruited to date, spanning eight different STEM disciplines. CaNCURE’s commitment to diversity is exemplified by the inclusion of nine (30 %) underrepresented minority students and an additional seven (23 %) first-to-college students. Program success was measured by trainees’ responses to an intake questionnaire, an identical exit questionnaire, an outcome questionnaire at co-op completion, and trainees’ entries in e-portfolios. 4. Usefulness: Trainees stated they were placed in research settings that they considered appropriate to learn research and professional skills. Trainees indicated a new awareness of a range of career possibilities, from pure science and the development of new knowledge/theory, the translation of knowledge into products and procedures, and clinical and professional services in the treatment of cancer. CaNCURE was the final co-op for 40 % of trainees and stood to play an influential role in their decision to pursue a cancer-focused career. Among the first group graduates (May 2016), several have accepted positions in cancer research and others are entering medical school with the intent of a career in oncology. Learning Objectives: The participant shall be able to identify strategies that can be used to increase undergraduate awareness of and interest in a career in cancer. References: Suzanne A. Gronemeyer. Creating Synergy: Essential Components of a Successful R25E Cancer Education Program. J Canc Educ (2011) 26:215–222. Velez JM, Velez JJ. The eminent need for an academic program in universities to teach nanomedicine. Int J Nanomedicine. (2011) 6:1733-1738.

4B-2: Utilizing SharePoint to Improve the Mentor-Trainee Matching Process

Suzanne Gronemeyer, James Marmion, Gerard Zambetti
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, TN, USA

Abstract: Background: The R25E (5R25CA023944-33) Pediatric Oncology Education (POE) Program http://www.stjude.org/poe at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is a summer research internship for pre-doctoral US students in the biomedical sciences. More than 500 apply each year. Description: In early October and again in mid-November, the PI emailed a brief program announcement to over 2500 US university faculty and cancer researchers. The 2016 announcement included information about our new St. Jude Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. POE participants will have opportunities to join our inaugural graduate school class in August 2017. As applicant credential files were completed, the PI uploaded a folder with their credentials to a SharePoint website. A graduate school faculty committee reviewed the applications of those expressing an interest in a PhD or MD/PhD. Evaluation: The SharePoint site enabled multiple faculty to review candidates without the PI needing to send files to individual faculty. The result was a much more timely and more thorough review of the applicant pool than had been possible earlier without SharePoint. The committee recommended additional enhancements to the SharePoint site, which we will implement in our upcoming application season. Suggestions included (1) a centralized ranking system where reviewers could compare notes and score applicants, (2) combine each individual’s credentials into one PDF file to facilitate downloading, and (3) combine the PhD and MD/PhD pools. Usefulness: The committee identified more than 30 applicants who were good matches for our program and faculty. We were able to place some two dozen in our 2016 class. Several committee members had not taken a POE in recent years but selected one from the pool and matched with them. Committee members identified matches for other faculty who normally do not take POE students but who were quite interested in and matched with the candidate the committee recommended. Learning Objectives: The participant will learn how use of a SharePoint website can facilitate faculty-trainee matching and stimulate faculty interest. References: Franco I, Bailey LO, Bakos AD, Springfield SA. The Continuing Umbrella of Research Experiences (CURE): a model for training underserved scientists in cancer research. J Cancer Educ. 2011 Mar;26(1):92-6. Daniel CL, Brooks MC, Waterbor JW. Approaches for longitudinally tracking graduates of NCI funded short-term cancer research training programs. J Cancer Educ. 2011 Mar;26(1):58-63.

4B-3: Interdisciplinary Curriculum for Oncology Palliative Education

Barbara Head1, Karen Kayser2, Tara Schapmire1, Mark Pfeifer1
1University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY, USA; 2Kent School of Social Work, Louisville, KY, USA

Abstract: Background/Purpose: If patients are to receive quality cancer care, students of the healthcare professions must receive interprofessional education focused on developing skills and knowledge necessary for collaborative palliative care practice in oncology, yet such training is rare. To remedy this educational deficit, a team at the University of Louisville developed and implemented the Interdisciplinary Curriculum for Oncology Palliative Education (iCOPE) which is mandatory for nursing, medical, and social work students and pastoral care residents. Description: The iCOPE curriculum consists of four case-based, online didactic modules developed using interactive educational software, a clinical experience with a palliative care team and related reflective writing exercise, and an interdisciplinary case management experience. Students learn together in small interprofessional groups as they share reflections and plan the care for a patient with advanced cancer. Evaluation: Over 1000 students have now completed the curriculum. Evaluation included both quantitative and qualitative measures. Pre/post measures included two validated instruments, the End-of-Life Professional Caregiver Survey and the Self-Efficacy for Interprofessional Experiential Learning Scale. Appraisal of the pre- and post-measures indicate statistically significant improvement with the effect size for most being either large or moderate. The overall iCOPE evaluation showed all students rated the program highly on 14 scaled items. Analysis of the qualitative data revealed a deep appreciation for the practice of palliative care and high regard for the learning experience. Usefulness: The curriculum has proven to be feasible and embraced by learners. The components are available online at www.icopeproject.org and can be used in part or in whole by other institutions. Relationship to Conference Theme: Integration of palliative care into oncology and interprofessional education are two initiatives supported by healthcare leadership organizations in the USA. This project offers a proven interprofessional curriculum designed to prepare future healthcare professionals to provide team-based palliative care in oncology. Learning Objectives: The participant will be able to list two reasons why interprofessional training in palliative care is important for future cancer clinicians, name and describe the four components of one interdisciplinary curriculum for palliative oncology education, and formulate a plan for using the curricular components in their own teaching environments. References: Ellman MS, Schulman-Green D, Blatt L, et al. Using online learning and interactive simulation to teach spiritual and cultural aspects of palliative care to interprofessional students. J Palliat Med. 2012;15(11):1240-1247. DeCoste-Lopez J, Madhok J, Harman S. Curricular Innovations for Medical Students in Palliative and End-of-Life Care: A Systematic Review and Assessment of Study Quality. J Palliat Med. 2015;18(4):338-349. 

4B-4: The Nathan Schnaper Intern Program Integrates Research, Education, and Clinical Components in an Undergraduate Summer Internship Focused on Translation of Laboratory Discoveries into Clinical Applications

Bret Hassel1, Heather Ezelle1, Rena Lapidus1, Ron Gartenhaus1, Lauren Schnaper2, Douglas Ross3, Kevin Cullen1
1University of Maryland Greenebaum Cancer Center, Baltimore, MD, USA; 2Greater Baltimore Medical Center, Baltimore, MD, USA; 3University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA

Abstract: Cancer-associated morbidity and mortality are major health concerns in the USA and worldwide. Research has advanced our understanding of cancer etiology, progression, and pathology and has highlighted the critical relationship between the laboratory and the clinic in cancer detection and treatment. Continued progress requires the exposure of aspiring scientists and clinicians to the field of cancer biology at an early stage of their education. Towards this goal, the Nathan Schnaper Intern Program (NSIP) at the University of Maryland Greenebaum Cancer Center (UMGCC) provides training through a 10-week summer internship that emphasizes translation of laboratory discoveries into clinical applications. Interns are recruited from undergraduate institutions nationwide. Twenty interns per summer are selected based on academics, references, and a personal statement. Minority participation and training opportunities for students at institutions that lack strong undergraduate research programs is emphasized. Intern support is provided to enhance economic, racial, and geographic diversity. Accepted interns participate in an integrated program of hands-on cancer research, cancer biology, and clinical oncology. A laboratory technique course prepares the interns for mentored research in diverse areas of cancer biology. Results are presented in an intern retreat. Educational modules highlight ongoing translational cancer research at the UMGCC and link research, didactic, and clinical experiences to provide a broad perspective of this bench-to-bedside-and-back continuum. Interns are exposed to clinical oncology through shadowing UMGCC clinicians. Each component of the NSIP is critically evaluated through intern, mentor, consultant, and external Advisory Board assessments. The professional paths of graduates are tracked as an important metric of program success. NSIP outcomes are presented at national meetings as a mechanism of dissemination. UMGCC resources and NSIP training components comprise an innovative program to inspire and educate the next generation of cancer researchers to pursue careers in the battle against cancer and fill the need for skilled physician-scientists. Learning Objectives: The participant shall be able to identify three components of translational cancer research and describe their interrelationships, provide examples of lab-to-clinic and clinic-to-lab information flow and describe their importance in translational research, and identify training activities that illustrate the roles of translational research in clinical oncology. References: 1. “Future Supply of and Demand for Oncologists” 2008 Journal of Oncology Practice 4:300. 2. “ASCO predicts shortage of oncologists as demand grows” Oncology Practice.com March 12, 2014 (http://www.oncologypractice. com/practice-economics/health-reform/single-article/ascopredictsshortage-of-oncologists-as-demand-grows/995da42c6562b9 cad9d0afa910fae7f1.html). 3. Tilghman, S. et al., BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH WORKFORCE WORKING GROUP REPORT National Institutes of Health June 14, 2012 (http://acd.od.nih. gov/biomedical_research_wgreport.pdf).

4B-5: Cancer Educators Have an Obligation to Include Palliative Care Knowledge in Their Cancer Education Curriculums

Paula Nelson-Marten
College of Nursing, University of Colorado, Aurora, CO, USA

Abstract: Background/Purpose: Cancer nurses and other cancer health care professionals provide palliation every day in their cancer practice. At the same time, they may be providing active curative cancer interventions. The 2014 Institute of Medicine Report, Dying in America, found that many health care professionals lack the training and experience needed to care for patients with palliative care needs. This presentation encourages cancer educators to answer the question—Are you training your health profession students to offer complex cancer care (in their chosen health care specialty) and at the same time are you also teaching them basic palliative care skills and competencies appropriate to their health care specialty? Description: von Gunten, an oncologist and palliative care physician, (2002) delineated differences between advanced palliative care skills and competencies expected of specialists and basic palliative care skills and competencies that should be required of all physicians and other health care professionals. Weissman and Meier (2011) identified assessment components for primary palliative care as pain and symptom assessment, social/spiritual assessment, understanding of illness/ prognosis and basic treatment options, identification of patient-centered goals for care, and transition of care post-discharge. They encouraged that these assessment components be included in routine care to assist in preventing unmet needs of palliative care patients. Evaluation: Cancer educators should review (evaluate) their current cancer education curriculums to determine where content related to basic skills and competencies in palliative care can be added to enhance their students’ knowledge of basic palliative care skills and competencies. Usefulness: If all cancer health care professionals received training in their cancer education that included basic palliative care skills and competencies, they would be better equipped to identify patients at risk for unmet palliative care needs. These skills could be useful in clinic and office settings as well as in acute care. Learning Objectives: The participant shall be able to identify two reasons why knowledge of palliative care skills and competencies are important to include in cancer education. References: Institute of Medicine Report–Dying in America: Key Findings & Recommendations (2014) http://www. nationalacademies.org/hmd/~/media/Files/Report%20Files/2014 /EOL/Key%20Findings%20and%20Recommendations.pdf. von Gunten, C.F. (2002) Secondary and tertiary palliative care in US hospitals. JAMA,20 (287):875-881. Weissman, D.E., & Meier, D.E. (2011). Identifying Patients in Need of Palliative Care Assessment in the Hospital Setting: A Consensus Report from the Center to Advance Palliative Care. Jo of Palliative Medicine, 14 (1):17-22.