The Long-Term Care Resource Collaborative (LTCRC) The LTCRC is a stakeholder body that has extended beyond a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI)-funded study into a larger network from which infection prevention resources will be shared and updated.
Nationally, nursing homes were devastated by COVID-19. Although facilities are required to have infection control staff, only 3% of the designated infection preventionists have taken a basic infection control course prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Little is known about the implementation of infection control practices and effective interventions in nursing homes. The PCORI-funded study, led by Penn State College of Medicine and informed by the LTCRC, connected academic medical experts with nursing home staff and administrators to support infection control guideline implementation.
The study used Project ECHO (Extension for Community Health Outcomes), a case-based virtual education model, to compare training programs on patient-centered outcomes, including reducing the number of residents with COVID-19.
Prior to becoming Deputy Secretary for QA, Susan was the Director for the Bureau of Community Program Licensure and Certification, where she managed various programs including home health and intermediate care. Susan has a robust background in nursing, with over 25 years of experience working in nursing homes.
Stephanie serves in this role on behalf of Secretary Robert Torres. Her focus for this project is on the alignment with her Department’s goal, ensuring the research is patient-centered given their mission to protect older Pennsylvanians. Her Department also houses the Long-term Care Facility’s Ombudsman Office, which advocates for systematic improvements in long-term care services.
Tom Edwards is a family partner whose mother has recent patient care experiences including three hospitalizations and three skilled nursing care facility admissions. Tom is most interested in identifying and responding to social isolation factors that affect improving patient outcomes including infection control.
Angela has been a patient co-investigator on other PCORI funded projects. Through this experience she has participated in several research trainings and is anxious contribute her patient perspective. In her personal experience, she has both a family member who is in a nursing home and she has personally lived in a nursing home for rehabilitation
Kristin is a healthcare professional with more than 10 years of experience coordinating care throughout multiple systems. She is well versed in healthcare reform, quality improvement, data analysis, underserved populations and the integration of human services into the healthcare setting. Her interests for this project include ensuring that the number of resources available to facilities remains coordinated and that any additional feedback from facilities can inform future interventions.
Chris works with 200 Nursing Facilities and 400 members, include long-term care and senior service providers. His role is to improve quality within their organizations through clinical, operational, and process improvements. As a licensed nursing home administrator, Chris brings a valuable perspective to this work and looks forward to contributing to the research at each stage, beginning with recruitment.
Wilmarie has worked for several Pennsylvania state agencies including the Department of Aging and the Department of Human Services (DHS) as a top executive collaborating with local, state and federal agencies for over 14 years. She has a strong interest in quality assurances and improvement in nursing homes.
Emily is a fellowship trained Geriatrician with board certification in Internal Medicine, Geriatrics and Hospice and Palliative Care. Her interests are to improve the quality and efficiency of care in the post-acute space. She is hoping to find way to aggregate outcomes data and communicate a consistent message.
Linda is an accomplished results-oriented senior nurse executive having served 40 years in progressive nursing administrative positions. She brings expertise in operations management, organizational development and project management.
Laura is skilled in acute care, emergency medicine, inpatient care, post-acute care, healthcare management, school nursing, education, and patient safety. She hopes to utilize her experience in planning, implementing and evaluating educational programs that promote best clinical practice to inform this research and curriculum. Laura oversees the clinical operations team of Helion while providing support and quality improvement for their post-acute network of providers
Cheri is a RN and licensed Nursing Home Administrator who previously served for 10 years as chief nursing officer and then COO of a 250+-bed continuing care retirement facility. Her organization has two years’ established relationship with the ECHO team at Penn State and looks forward to assisting in recruitment and dissemination.
Tracy is the executive director of food and nutrition services at 68 Guardian Elder Care locations. She is responsible for the integrity of standards, practices, training, program development, and coordinating the interdisciplinary focus of Extendicare’s patient care activities. She hopes to share best practices and standards for infection control and quality of life
Megan is a licensed clinical social worker with almost two decades of direct case management and leadership experience in independent living, assisted living, nursing care and home- and community-based services. Her organization is part of a national network of state-level professional organizations for non-profit long-term care facilities. Her goal is to recruit from and disseminate results to her connection of 300 PA assisted living and nursing home facilities.
As the Manager of Network Performance, Kim is responsible for overseeing staff and working directly with healthcare providers to help them improve the quality of care that they provide, assist in their understanding of changes in healthcare, reviewing outcomes, sharing best practices, as well as bridging the communication gap between post-acute care providers, acute care hospitals, and physician practices for Delaware, Central Pennsylvania, and Eastern Pennsylvania regions. She plans to assist with recruitment of facilities and providing education and resources to facilities that have been affected so greatly during the pandemic.
Jen is a board-certified geriatric pharmacist and a Fellow of the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists. In her role at Guardian Healthcare, she works with skilled nursing and personal care facilities in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. She is interested in addressing policy and barriers related to the adoption of infection control practices, therapeutic treatment options, and vaccinations.
Amy will assist with key study decisions such as recruitment and curriculum development. She also plans to serve on the expert team and present ECHO sessions as needed..
Professor and Vice Chair of Clinical Research, Department of Medicine;
Director, Project ECHO;
Director, Penn State Clinical and Translational Science Institute
Jen serves as the principal investigator for this study. Her research and leadership experience position her to direct this community-based Project ECHO intervention to evaluate infection control to reduce COVID-19 infection rates in nursing homes across Pennsylvania. She has assembled this multi-disciplinary team of researchers and stakeholders to ensure patient-centeredness and potential impact of our research.
Niki specializes in geriatric medicine and serves as Co-Investigator on this project. She serves as an expert in ECHO sessions. Due to her oversight of several nursing homes, she assists with study recruitment and also weighs in on a variety of project specific topics, including but not limited to study design, curriculum, data collection, and dissemination.
Ayesha specializes in geriatric medicine and serves as Co-Investigator on this project. She serves as an expert in ECHO sessions.
Gavin has extensive expertise in infection control and prevention, including providing technical assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic. He serves as the hub lead for the ECHO series, which will involves presenting, facilitating, and being present for each weekly ECHO session. Gavin is responsible for overseeing the technical assistance provided to nursing homes in the intervention arm. In addition, he weighs in on a variety of project specific topics, including but not limited to study design, curriculum, data collection, recruitment, and dissemination. Gavin’s extensive emergency preparedness experience specific to nursing homes allows him to participate in all aspects of the study.
Janice serves on the stakeholder advisory board, which meets bi-monthly for one hour, representing the Center for Excellence in Geriatrics. Additionally, Janice attends the ECHO intervention as one of the hub experts, providing specialty-specific advice and recommendations on cases presented during sessions. She weighs in on a variety of project specific topics, including but not limited to study design, curriculum, data collection, recruitment, and dissemination.
Ashley specializes in geriatric medicine and serves as Co-Investigator on this project. Her involvement includes participation in team meetings and serving as an expert in ECHO sessions.
As Project ECHO Director of Implementation and Research, William oversees all aspects of study design and implementation of the proposed project. He participates in weekly research team meetings and weigh in on a variety of project specific topics, including but not limited to study design, curriculum, data collection, recruitment, and dissemination. He will also oversee the RE-AIM framework analysis, including data collection from study sites.
Mr. Francis King has three decades of experience in senior service and developed and directs the Penn State University Nursing Home Administration course. Having supported seniors in various capacities, Mr. King is a valuable member of the project team, specifically weighing in on recruitment, ECHO curriculum, data collection, and making connections with various nursing homes and stakeholders. He also serves as an expert or presenter during ECHO sessions.
Dr. Paules is Associate Professor of Medicine and an infectious diseases physician-scientist with expertise in both treating and researching COVID-19 during the pandemic. Specific to this proposal, she assists with the Project ECHO intervention providing additional infection control expertise to complement that of Mr. MacGregor-Skinner. She is an active research team member, participating in regular investigator meetings and assisting with study design refinement, ensuring the highest impact topics are covered early in the curriculum. She assists with data collection instruments, data analysis and interpretation, and results presentation through abstracts and manuscripts throughout the proposed study period.
Lan developed the statistical analysis plan for the proposed study and provides advice on all methodological aspects of the study. Further, Dr. Kong oversees the quantitative data analyses
As a masters-level biostatistician, Erik is responsible for all aspects of quantitative statistical analysis: data cleaning, organizing all data files, and performing data analyses. He ensures that data collection tools are appropriate for answering all study questions and ensures the integrity of the analyses and the reported results. Erik also assists with preparing materials for manuscripts and presentations.
Doug has expertise in administrative data and oversees the virtual access to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid’s (CMS) Minimum Data Set. He oversees the study’s access to the Administrative Data Accelerator for assessing nursing home resident quality of life assists with the data analysis.
Sanjeev is founder and director of Project ECHO. As Co-Investigator, he can leverage extensive ECHO networks for potential dissemination to benefit nursing homes across the country.
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