McMaster University

McMaster University

Current Projects

Measuring Factors that Influence Nurse Practitioner (NP) Activities and the Implications for Optimizing NP Patient Panel Size in Primary Healthcare (PHC) Settings  

Optimizing Nurse Practitioner Patient Panel Size in Primary Healthcare

This project is funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and seeks to optimize patient panel size for nurse practitioners (NPs) in primary health care (PHC) and inform planning and future evaluations of team performance in Ontario by improving the understanding of how organizational, NP and patient characteristics influence NP activities in PHC settings. This project seeks to identify and understand the barriers and facilitators to optimizing NP patient panel size. Optimizing the patient panel size of nurse practitioners in primary health care is important for effective interprofessional team functioning, human resource planning and timely access to high quality patient care. No studies have directly measured NP activities in PHC settings.

Improving Cancer Pain and Symptom Management Through Knowledge Translation

This project is funded by the Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute. The purpose of this studyis to assess the different ways cancer centres across Ontario encourage health providers to use best practice guidelines and other tools designed for pain and symptom management (PSM). Findings will provide information about how cancer centres in Ontario and other provinces can promote the use of guidelines and tools to improve pain and symptom management. Improving guideline use may help reduce symptoms and improve the quality of life for Canadians with cancer.

Evaluating the Feasibility and Impact of the Virtual Lifestyle Management Program

The Virtual Lifestyle Management (VLM) Program is a web-based lifestyle program that provides users with education, tailored feedback and tracking capabilities to facilitate lifestyle change.  The VLM program is based on interventions proven to be effective for weight management within the diabetes prevention program. Through interactive learning guides, activity plans and tailored feedback, the VLM program offers the knowledge, skills and encouragement required to facilitate lifestyle change.  Review of this program by the diabetes clinic leadership at Hamilton Health Sciences suggests that it may be very appropriate for patients in Hamilton. This project seeks to determine what the feasibility of the VLM program in obese adults with type 2 diabetes who attend the Diabetes Care and Research Program is, and what the impact is on the following outcomes: a) glycated hemoglobin; b) lipid profile; c) physical activity; d) body composition; and e) patient satisfaction.

Diabetes Coaching Review

Health coaching is defined as health related education, behaviour change promotion and psychosocial support by a professional. Health coaching is emerging as an increasingly effective intervention to improve clinical health outcomes (i.e., glycemic control), but also as an effective intervention to improve medication/treatment adherence, health care utilization and adherence to evidence-based practices. The goal of this systematic review and meta-analysis is to synthesize the best evidence to determine the effect of diabetes health coaching on adults with type 2 diabetes on clinical outcomes, particularly, hemoglobin A1C, self-care behaviours and quality of life.

Diabetes in Pregnancy Study

Pregestational diabetes, defined by the Canadian Diabetes Association (CDA) as "diabetes that is  present before pregnancy", has been increasing in prevalence, primarily due to the increase in type 2 diabetes in women of child bearing age. Recent studies have identified that mothers with pregestational diabetes incur a greater risk for maternal and/or fetal complications and suggest that greater surveillance (i.e. monitoring) and improved glucose control for women with pregestational diabetes can reduce maternal and fetal risks. In order to improve outcomes for women with pregestational diabetes, it is important to assess the current challenges and determinants impacting women with suboptimal controlled glycemic control. The objective of this study is to understand the clinical and patient characteristics that determine and explain suboptimal glycemic control (A1C >7%) in women with pregestational diabetes. The results of this study will inform future research regarding clinical interventions and health service delivery models to support women with suboptimal pregestational diabetes control in pregnancy.


Partners in Research - Trillium Health Partners/McMaster University

Achieving Quality Patient Care Through Leadership in Research

An academic-practice partnership has been developed between Trillium Health Partners and McMaster University. Its aim is to create an innovative approach to educate and mentor healthcare providers in conducting point-of-care research, quality improvement or evidence based practice projects. The goal is to improve patient, provider and/or system outcomes relevant to clinical practice.

A practice based research course is being offered on site, over a 3-month period, by a group of healthcare researchers at McMaster University. A key objective of this course is to increase participants’ knowledge, skills and confidence in integrating research and evidence-based practice activities into their day-to-day practice. All participants will develop a research proposal or project plan suitable for implementation following completion of the course. Teaching strategies including small group seminars, peer review, and teleconferencing, as well as one-to-one mentorship/consultation. All participants will be paired with an academic mentor to support the development of their research proposal or project plan.

The course is open to nurses, allied health providers, professional practice leaders and managers who have: 1) completed a Master’s degree (or equivalent) with at least one research methods or statistics course; 2) identified a research question, quality improvement or evidence informed decision making issue that would be the focus of their proposal/project development; and 3) confirmed the support of their immediate supervisor to participate in the course and to set aside appropriate work time to complete course assignments.

The course is currently being offered on site at Trillium Health Partners (THP). If you work at THP and are interested in applying. For course details click here. For the application form, click here.

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