A National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

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Nursing Research and Education

Nursing Research and Education
The Division of Nursing Research and Education is nationally renowned for its collaborative, multidisciplinary scientific studies on oncology care. The research program is organized around two major themes: quality of life and symptom management. Studies range from diagnosis and treatment to survivorship and end-of-life care, providing valuable insights in cancer control and population science. Research conducted by this division has improved the care delivered to patients throughout the nation. The Division also holds several professional educational programs each year. Please click on the "Upcoming Conferences" tab for information and a listing of current educational opportunities.
Research Objectives
  • Conducting collaborative research studies on quality of life and/or symptom management in City of Hope’s targeted areas: prostate, colorectal,pancreatic, ovarian,breast and lung cancers; leukemia, lymphoma and other hematologic disorders.
  • Providing nursing research presence and expertise at all Cancer Protocol Review and Monitoring Committee and Institutional Review Board meetings.
  • Exploring strategies for nurse retention, with an emphasis on decreasing the stress of working with a cancer patient population.
  • Expanding research participation and evidence-based practice activities toward achieving Magnet Status criteria.
  • Disseminating findings of research studies, including information available on palliative/end-of-life care and survivorship, to those at City of Hope and throughout the United States.
Programs for Health Professionals
City of Hope’s Division of Nursing Research and Education conducts interdisciplinary research organized around the quality of life and symptom management of oncology patients. Multiple courses are offered throughout the year to health professionals from across the country.

Current Research

Goal 1
Describe the effects of cancer and cancer treatment on quality of life and symptoms in cancer patients throughout the trajectory of disease.
Ongoing studies include:
  • Describing quality of life in colorectal cancer survivors with stomas
  • Describing illness perception, pain and symptom distress in gastrointestinal cancers

Goal 2
Test interventions to improve quality of life and symptom management for cancer patients from diagnosis and throughout treatment, survivorship and end of life care.
Ongoing studies include:
  • Palliative care for patients with all stages of lung cancer
  • Support for family caregivers
  • Palliative care for patients in Phase 1 clinical trials
  • Use of technology to deliver communication training
  • Survivorship care planning in gastrointestinal and lung cancers
  • Comprehensive program to support recovery for patients and informal caregivers after thoracic surgery

Goal 3
Develop and disseminate curricula on palliative/end-of-life care and survivorship for health professions involved in cancer patient care.
Ongoing studies include:
  • Disseminating the end-of-life curriculum for nursing faculty and clinical nurses
  • Disseminating and evaluating survivorship education for multidisciplinary teams caring from cancer patients
  • Disseminating and evaluating transdisciplinary palliative care education for psycho-oncology professionals
  • Communication skills for oncology nurses and other professionals
  • Interprofessional team training for palliative-care communication
City of Hope's Breakthroughs blog has featured articles on the study of palliative care for lung cancer patients, our caregiver study and an most recently an Institute of Medicine Report  and video about delivering high quality cancer care for patients and their families.

Upcoming Conferences

Educational Opportunities for Healthcare Professionals
Spiritual Care at the Heart of Patient-Centered Care
This two day course will provide transdisciplinary healthcare professionals the opportunity to focus on the aspects of spiritual care needs of patients throughout the trajectory of illness, as well as address their own spiritual care needs. This conference will focus on providing insight and strategies for better spiritual care of patients in the areas of communication, pediatrics, social work and chaplaincy, palliative medicine, psychology, survivorship, soul pain, prisons and, other cultures.  Also covered are issues of forgiveness, anger with God, and a physician’s personal insight into her own spiritual needs as a patient and how that ultimately affected her practice. Contact, Yvonne Rodriguez: yvrodriguez@coh.org 626-256-4673 ext. 62987
Pain Resource Nurse (PRN) Training Course
Visit the course website. and contact: Maggie Johnson, mjohnson@coh.org 626-256-4673 ext. 63202
  • August 26, 27, 28, 2014: Pasadena, CA
Preparing Professional Nurses for Cancer Survivorship Care
Visit the course website. or contact: Liz Gourdine: mgourdine@coh.org 626-256-4673 ext. 63488
Clinical Trials Training
Contact: Liz Gourdine, mgourdine@coh.org 626-256-4673 ext. 63488
  • October 9-10, 2014: Monrovia, CA
  • Flyer - Coming Soon!
New! Palliative Care Communication Training for Improved Quality of Care
This free two day grant-funded course will provide communication training for palliative care  professionals. The curriculum is appropriate for all core disciplines (physician, nurse, social worker, chaplain).  Participants will be comprised of competitively selected two-person teams from California palliative care programs. Using a goal directed method of teaching, faculty will help teams develop three goals for implementing process improvement related to communication. Goals will be followed at six and nine months post-course. Please contact Lisa Kilburn, pallcarecomm@coh.org for more information and to apply.
National ELNEC Courses 2014-2015

For more information about ELNEC & registration, please visit:  www.aacn.nche.edu/elnec
    *July 29-30, 2014: Washington, DC
    *Oct. 20-22, 2014: Orlando, FL
    *July 29-30, 2014: Chicago, IL
ELNEC-Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN)
     Aug. 21-22, 2014: Portland, OR
*Indicates course offered and sponsored by Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA)

NEW!  For 2015
ELNEC- Core 2015
January 19 - 20, 2015- Anaheim, CA
August 19 - 20, 2015- Kona, HI
ELNEC- Pediatric
January 19 - 20, 2015- Anaheim, CA
August 19 - 20, 2015- Kona, HI
ELNEC- Geriatric
January 19 - 20, 2015- Anaheim, CA
August 19 - 20, 2015- Kona, HI

ELNEC- Critical Care
January 19 - 20, 2015- Anaheim, CA
August 19 - 20, 2015- Kona, HI
ELNEC- Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN)
January 19 - 20, 2015- Anaheim, CA (Adult & Pediatric)
August 19 - 20, 2015- Kona, HI
All courses offer CE and/or CME units. Please contact us for more information

Research Staff

Administrative Staff

Current NRE Programs for Health Professionals

Recognized nationwide for its innovative biomedical research, City of Hope's Beckman Research Institute is home to some of the most tenacious and creative minds in science.
City of Hope has a long-standing commitment to Continuing Medical Education (CME), sharing advances in cancer research and treatment with the health-care community through CME courses such as conferences, symposia and other on and off campus CME opportunities for medical professionals.
City of Hope is one of only 41 Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the country, the highest designation awarded by the National Cancer Institute to institutions that lead the way in cancer research, treatment, prevention and professional education.
For the 11th year, U.S.News & World Report has named City of Hope one of the top cancer hospitals in the country.

Learn more about
City of Hope's institutional distinctions, breakthrough innovations and collaborations.
  • Eleven years ago, lymphoma patient Christine Pechera began the long road toward a cancer-free life. She had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma and told by doctors elsewhere that her lifespan likely would be measured in months, not years. Refusing to give up, she came to City of Hope for a second opinion. ...
  • Brain surgery is not for the faint of heart. It takes courage, as well as curiosity and compassion. The truly great surgeons also have a desire to find new, and better ways, of healing the brain. Enter Behnam Badie, M.D., chief of neurosurgery at City of Hope. Now a pioneer in brain tumor treatment, Badie enter...
  • Elizabeth Budde, M.D., Ph.D., wants to encourage infighting. She aims to turn the immune system on itself — to the benefit of patients with acute myeloid leukemia, or AML. AML arises when abnormal white blood cells grow out of control, amassing in the bone marrow and interfering with normal blood cell developme...
  • Six, to date; more soon. Outpatient bone marrow transplants, that is. Finding new ways to deliver quality care with the greatest benefit is a priority for a patient-centered institution like City of Hope. For example, not every bone marrow transplant patient needs to check into the hospital for treatment. In fa...
  • The best measure of success in the fight against cancer is in lives saved and families intact, in extra days made special simply because they exist. Yuman Fong, M.D., chair of the Department of Surgery at City of Hope, understands what precedes that special awareness. When cancer strikes, one minute a person ma...
  • In cancer, expertise matters. So do survival rates, patient safety, patient services and many other factors. City of Hope understands this, as does U.S.News & World Report. The magazine’s 2014-2015 list of best hospitals for cancer once again includes City of Hope, ranking the institution 12 out of 900 elig...
  • At 29, Kommah McDowell was a successful young professional engaged to be married to her best friend. She worked in the financial services sector and kick-boxed to keep in shape and to relax. Then came the diagnosis of triple-negative inflammatory breast cancer, a rare and very aggressive form of breast cancer. ...
  • The well-known drug tamoxifen might not always be the best choice for premenopausal women who have undergone treatment for breast cancer and face a heightened risk of recurrence. A new study suggests that the aromatase inhibitor exemestane, or Aromasin, works slightly better than tamoxifen in preventing cancer ...
  • At age 44, Bridget Hanchette, a mother of three from La Crosse, Wisconsin, was diagnosed with grade IV glioblastoma, the most aggressive type of malignant brain tumor. The cancer grows and spreads quickly, making it difficult to treat. Most patients with this diagnosis are not given much hope, but Hanchette’s i...
  • Survival rates for childhood cancer have improved tremendously over the past few decades, but postcancer care hasn’t always kept up. More children than ever are now coping with long-term complications and side effects caused by their disease and treatment — one of those being learning difficulties. A new ...
  • When Sheldon Querido, a retired manufacturer’s representative, was diagnosed with bladder cancer, his doctor told him that he’d need to have his bladder removed – and that he’d have to wear an external urine-collection bag for the rest of his life. “My first response was ‘I donR...
  • To stop smoking, two approaches might be better than one. A new study has found that using the medication varenicline, or Chantix – along with nicotine patches – was more effective than the medicine alone in helping people quit. The study, conducted by Stellanbosch University in Cape Town, South Africa, and pub...
  • John Cloer was three months shy of his third birthday in 2004 when he was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. For the next three and a half years, he received chemotherapy at City of Hope, finally obtaining long-term remission. His parents Bill and Gina, along with John and his younger brother Steve, r...
  • News about the risks or benefits of widespread cancer screening seem to arrive daily – 3D mammography for breast cancer, CT scans for lung cancer, PSA tests for prostate cancer and now pelvic exams for some women’s cancers. Missing in the headlines is a reflection of how cancer detection is evolving. Today’s ca...
  • Adults with sickle cell disease soon may have a new treatment option: bone marrow transplants. Children with sickle cell disease have been treated successfully with transplantation of bone marrow, more officially known as hematopoietic stem cells, from other people. But the procedure has been less successful in...