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CCM Innovation Grants Awarded to Two Junior Researchers

Tue, 06/28/2016

Two junior researchers have recently been awarded Critical Care Medicine Innovation Grants. Bradley Podd, MD, PhD, and Jennifer Seaman, PhD, RN, received these individual departmental awards for their excellent research proposals. The CCM Innovation Grant Program supports new and innovative research projects submitted by junior scientists including faculty, research associates, and mentored post-doctoral clinical and research fellows within the department. The Innovation Grants will take effect on July 1.

Podd, a second year fellow in the Division of Pediatric Critical Care Medicine, was awarded the grant for his proposal on immune cell function in pediatric sepsis. Severe sepsis in children has a number of subtypes, of which decreased immune function, or immune depression, is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Podd’s work aims to identify which molecular pathways are altered in patients with immune depression in order to deliver personalized medicine as new biologic therapies emerge.

Seaman, a CRISMA Research Fellow, submitted a proposal on interdisciplinary family meetings in the ICU and why this beneficial practice is not routinely carried out in a timely manner in many ICUs. In a previous study, she and her fellow researchers conducted qualitative phone interviews with ICU clinicians from diverse geographic and clinical settings to better understand what factors may hinder or help the conduct of timely family meetings. Participants described multiple barriers and facilitators occurring at all levels, including clinician, unit, and hospital. The Innovation Grant will enable Seaman to validate these findings in a national sample of ICU medical directors and nurse managers, in order to develop a scalable intervention to ensure timely interdisciplinary family meetings in the ICU.