This new T32 application from the University of Washington (UW) focuses on a novel and important area of research - palliative care research for heart, lung, and blood diseases. Our aging population and advances in chronic disease management have combined to create an enormous need for improved palliative care research across diverse diseases. Heart, lung, and blood diseases encompass leading causes of death and disability in the US, and represent areas where palliative care research has lagged behind compared to cancer. This application differs from any existing T32 programs at UW or elsewhere by focusing on training in palliative care research for patients with heart, lung, and blood diseases. Additionally, because health disparities in palliative care have been well documented, this innovative training program focuses on understanding and eliminating these disparities. This proposal capitalizes on the exceptional faculty and academic environment across multiple schools (Medicine, Nursing, Public Health, and Social Work) and multiple Divisions within the School of Medicine; it also builds upon a close working relationship with our NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) that will support research training. Dr. J. Randall Curtis, the program director, is a national leader in palliative care research and has been the recipient of a K24 Award for mentoring from NHLBI for 10 years. He is also the Director of the new UW Palliative Care Center of Excellence which will support this proposed T32. We have developed a rigorous research training program built on four core principles to prepare new researchers for independent careers: 1) Trainees must master a defined set of research and writing skills necessary to advance to independent, yet collaborative investigators; 2) Structured and comprehensive research mentoring is critical to retaining trainees in science; 3) Research projects must be tailored to each trainee and designed to be successful training vehicles that facilitate early academic productivity; 4) Training in palliative care research shoul provide opportunities for interdisciplinary interactions and promote team science. To continuously improve our training program, we will assess the effectiveness of our methods for training and mentoring using well-defined metrics, and adjust our methods as necessary. We are requesting 4 post-doctoral training slots and trainees will complete a two-year training program. This application represents an important opportunity to advance palliative care research concerning heart, lung, and blood diseases, and to create a research workforce for the future.

Public Health Relevance

This T32 program is designed to train post-doctoral trainees in palliative care research concerning patients with heart, lung, or blood diseases. The program stresses the conduct of clinically-relevant, patient-oriented research in an ethical and scientifically rigorous manner and has an on-going commitment to attract and train individuals from under-represented minorities.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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NHLBI Institutional Training Mechanism Review Committee (NITM)
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Colombini-Hatch, Sandra
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University of Washington
Internal Medicine/Medicine
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United States
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Steiner, Jill M; Kirkpatrick, James N; Heckbert, Susan R et al. (2018) Identification of adults with congenital heart disease of moderate or great complexity from administrative data. Congenit Heart Dis 13:65-71
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