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Month: March 2021

Working with Advisory Boards for Research in Prisons

Working with Advisory Boards for Research in Prisons

Susan Loeb, PhD, RN, FGSA, FAAN, from the Penn State College of Nursing presented research conducted in collaboration with Klein Buendel Senior Scientist, Valerie Myers, PhD, at the 33rd Annual (Virtual) Scientific Sessions of the Eastern Nursing Research Society on March 25 and 26, 2021. This year’s conference theme was Generating Nursing Science to Meet the Needs of a Diverse Society. Dr. Loeb’s poster was entitled, “Planning, Maximizing, and Sustaining Advisory Boards to Promote Equitable Care for Diverse Populations.”  

The poster reported the exploration of effective ways to partner with Advisory Boards to promote successful entrée into prisons to (1) conduct and execute study aims; (2) enhance credibility, relevance, and translation of research; and (3) promote equitable health and health care for diverse populations. The specific study utilizing Advisory Boards was designed to engage carefully vetted men and women who are incarcerated to assist in caring for their older or sicker peers, and provide them with consistent high quality peer caregiving training. Trained peers contribute to a pressing health care need in our nation’s prisons.

In order to maximize Advisory Board effectiveness, the research team:

  • Reflected on past experiences and considered key stakeholders engaged on Advisory Boards across four previous NIH-funded studies in this area of research;
  • Deliberated on what worked well and challenges encountered;
  • Identified enthusiastic leaders and staff at prior research location with a focus on broadening the array of disciplines represented;
  • Bolstered representation of people who were previously incarcerated; and
  • Appraised budgetary capacity.

As a result, Advisory Board meetings were shortened and focused, representation by Departments of Corrections was expanded, relationship building and networking opportunities were achieved, virtual events reduced budgetary and logistical burdens associated, and cost savings allowed for more frequent Advisory Board engagement.

Building commitment of representative Advisory Boards facilitates access to hard-to-reach and often overlooked research populations. Advisory boards of invested and representative stakeholders are key to generating nursing science that addresses health needs and promotes health equity for people living in prison.

The research presented was funded by the following SBIR/STTR grants to Klein Buendel from the National Institute on Aging at the National Institutes of Health (AG049570; AG049570; AG057239; AG057239; Dr. Susan Loeb and Dr. Valerie Myers, Multiple Principal Investigators). Collaborators on this poster also included Dr. Erin Kitt-Lewis, Sherif Olanrewaju, and Katherine Fiochetta from Penn State University; and Jeannyfer Reither and Savanna Olivas from Klein Buendel.

Curbing College Drinking and Risky Sexual Behavior Using Dynamic Feedback

Curbing College Drinking and Risky Sexual Behavior Using Dynamic Feedback

Two-thirds of college students are current drinkers of alcoholic beverages. One in three college students report past month binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row), and one in ten report high intensity drinking (ten or more drinks in a row). Greater student alcohol consumption and heavy drinking on a given day are linked to increased sexual activity and risky sexual behavior, such as unprotected sex and sex with casual partners. This puts students at risk for negative health outcomes, such as sexually-transmitted infections, and other harmful consequences, such as sexual victimization.

Klein Buendel is collaborating with Dr. Anne Ray at the University of Kentucky on a new research project designed to curb drinking and risky sexual behavior by first-year college students. The new study will assess the impact of a brief, personalized intervention utilizing an innovative, cross-tailored, dynamic feedback component. The intervention will purposefully integrate content on the relationship between alcohol use and risky sexual behavior. The intervention will leverage technology to incorporate daily assessments of student behavior and deliver weekly dynamic feedback. Participating students will be asked to complete four diary entries each week for three months.

A hybrid effectiveness-implementation design will allow the investigators to evaluate the effectiveness of the integrated personalized feedback intervention with 600 first-year college students at two college sites in a randomized controlled trial. In addition, formative evaluation with local and national stakeholders (students and student affairs staff) will help to better understand factors that influence implementation and ensure its success and sustained use.   

This research project is funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism at the National Institutes of Health (Dr. Anne Ray, Principal Investigator). Collaborators include Dr. David Buller from Klein Buendel. KB’s Creative Team will develop the web-based program for college students.