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Corvallis Clinic Health Information Blog

Family Caregiver Month

Nov 21, 03:26 PM

Clinical Research Center

November is Family Caregiver Month, and I think it’s important to take a moment to think about this.  Of course, we’re all caregivers in some capacity – we care for our children, spouses and even pets on an everyday basis.  So in truth, Family Caregiver Month is about the caregiving that occurs above and beyond normal. 

I “got to” experience caregiving above and beyond normal this Fall while taking care of a family member who had  a knee replacement surgery.  Yikes.  And I have resources.  But here’s the thing: I know my life and that of my family member will eventually return to normal (maybe even better than normal since everyday knee pain had become normal).  But returning to normal is certainly not the case for the estimated 65 million Americans who take care of loved ones who have chronic illness, special needs or debilitating injuries.  

I get regular updates on caregiver support from the Alzheimer’s Association, and their resources are excellent.  I’ve witnessed the support offered locally by the excellent folks at the Alzheimer’s Network of Oregon – I can’t say enough about what a dedicated group of people they are.  However, not everyone is taking care of a patient with Alzheimer’s disease.  This is where the Caregiver Action Network (CAN) comes in.  CAN aims to improve the quality of life for caretakers from all walks of life who are managing chronic conditions, disabilities, or disease.

One of the things I like about working at the Clinical Research Center is that we provide one-on-one support for our patients and their families.   Whether the clinical study is for diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, psoriasis, etc., the Clinical Research Center is there to listen and go the extra mile to assure the best health outcome for our patients. 

If you are interested in learning more about our clinical studies contact the Clinical Research Center at 541-766-2163 or send an email to research@corvallisclinic.com.  Or, follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/corvallisclinicresearch.

- Julie Carrico is Associate Coordinator of The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center


Meet Lisa

Nov 03, 06:30 AM

Clinical Research Center

If you’ve ever heard someone described as “never having met a stranger,” they’d be talking about someone like Clinical Research Registered Nurse Lisa Buchheit.  Lisa is interested in everyone – their families, favorite sports teams, favorite foods, and so on. Not only that, Lisa is a consummate professional when it comes to taking care of her patients

Lisa, who has been with The Corvallis Clinic since 1984, graduated from Good Samaritan School of Nursing in Portland and has worked in many clinical areas, including oncology, cardiology and family medicine. Lisa joined the Clinical Research Center 11 years ago and has been involved in over 20 trials, including those in cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, oncology, sleep apnea, multiple sclerosis, asthma, allergy and immunology, and pediatric vaccine trials.

Lisa’s areas of interest are asthma, allergy and immunology, in both adult and pediatric populations. She has completed several studies with Dr. Roland Solensky, Clinic allergist and immunologist, most recently working on clinical trials for the now FDA-approved Grasstek® (grass pollen allergy treatment) and a dust mite allergy study. Lisa is currently working on a study for those patients at least 12 years of age who have uncontrolled asthma.

Lisa would tell you that her family is her greatest accomplishment.  Her priority has always been spending time with her large family, which is getting even larger as two of her daughters have recently married and a first grandchild is on the way.  In her spare time Lisa enjoys hiking, gardening, bird watching, and cooking.

If you are interested in learning more about our studies contact the Clinical Research Center at 541-766-2163 or send an email to research@corvallisclinic.com.  Or, follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/corvallisclinicresearch.

 - Julie Carrico is Associate Coordinator of The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center


Care coordination: Working together for healthier patients

Oct 29, 11:26 AM


Coordination of care has become one of ways medical organizations have attempted to improve patient care. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the main goal of care coordination "is to meet patients' needs and preferences in the delivery of high-quality, high-value health care." From the broad perspective, this involves the following:

  • Teamwork
  • Care management
  • Medication management
  • Health information technology
  • Patient-centered medical home

As a multi-specialty organization that received the highest level of Patient Centered Medical Home Recognition by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), The Corvallis Clinic places care coordination as a core value. Read Diabetes Education Part of Corvallis Clinic's Care Coordination Goals to see this in action.


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Welcome to the Flu Zone

Oct 20, 02:20 PM

The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center

The signs of fall are everywhere: kids are back in school; pumpkin spice lattes are being served; preparations for Halloween festivities are underway; we’ve had some rain; and … it’s time to schedule a flu shot. 

Thinking about flu shots makes me wax nostalgic about one of the more exciting studies we’ve ever done at The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center.  In 2009 our site was selected to participate in the clinical study for a new “high-dose” flu vaccine intended for patients 65 and older. The clinical importance of the high-dose flu vaccine (four times the potency of a regular adult flu vaccine) relates to the fact that human immune systems become weaker with age. The objective of the clinical study was to evaluate if the high-dose flu vaccine imparted a bigger “boost” in flu protection.  The Corvallis Clinic physicians were very supportive of our research center’s participation in this study because this promising vaccine had potential to improve patient care. 

The Clinical Research Center was thrilled to participate in the study, but we faced a daunting challenge - the high-dose flu vaccine study required that we find a relatively large number of volunteers in just a few weeks. Our typical research studies usually occur over several months, if not years, so we were definitely feeling the pressure!  However, with an all-hands-on-deck-approach, we mobilized our resources and completed the clinical study on time.

At the conclusion of the clinical study, 101 volunteers in Corvallis and the surrounding area contributed to the research data. These data, along with that of an additional 9000 patients from across the country, were eventually reviewed by the FDA, which approved the vaccine in December 2009. The Corvallis Clinic physicians have been offering the high-dose flu vaccine to patients over 65 since 2010. It is highly satisfying to know that our research center and our amazing community of volunteers contributed to reducing the risk for the age group at highest risk for seasonal influenza complications.

You can read more about the high dose flu vaccine at the Centers for Disease Control website http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/qa_fluzone.htm.   

And speaking of flu shots …

If you still have not received your flu vaccine, you can book an appointment at www.corvallisclinic.com. The locations and times are as follows:


Asbury Building, 3680 NW Samaritan Drive, noon - 6 p.m., check in at third floor, Sleep Medicine Desk.

  • Oct. 20-24, 27-30,
  • Nov. 3-7, 10-14, 17-21, 24-26


Pediatric and Family Flu Clinic, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., check in at Pediatrics (Asbury Building, 3680 NW Samaritan Drive)

  • Saturday and Sunday - Nov. 1-2 and Nov. 15-16

 

- Julie Carrico is Associate Coordinator of The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center

 


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Lives could depend on volunteer "heroes"

Oct 13, 06:00 PM

Clinical Research Center

It’s no secret that “Big Pharma” has a lot of critics. However, in the shadow of the Ebola outbreak, suddenly the critics are less vocal than those demanding innovation and speed in developing Ebola prevention or cures.  By all accounts, pharmaceutical companies with expertise in infectious diseases are responding quickly (Forbes).  Dr. Marie-Paule Kieny, an assistant director general at the World Health Organization, stated the pace of testing, and the bypassing of normal protocols to develop the vaccines, is “absolutely unprecedented” (New York Times).  According to Forbes, the upshot of the tragic Ebola outbreak is we’ve demonstrated “medical innovation can move forward more quickly than usual IF government agencies are willing to streamline the process-minimizing roadblocks and red tape.”

Hopefully none of us will be asked to participate in clinical trials for Ebola treatments because these clinical trials must occur in the at-risk population.  But, there are plenty of diseases and clinical trials to go around and advancing those medicines and technologies requires volunteers.  Dr. Joseph Sirven, chairman of neurology at the Mayo Clinic put this very eloquently:

We can’t demand new treatments, assuming someone else has tried them first. If we ever expect to find a cure for any number of horrible diseases, we have to step up. No one chooses to be sick, but sometimes these illnesses choose us. If our time is called to participate in a research study, it’s time to be the hero. Many lives could literally depend on it ( KJZZ.org 7/17/14).

It seems we can “fast track” new treatments but advancing new medicines and technology will also depend on availability of willing patient volunteers.  If you’d like to learn more about volunteering for a study, The Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP) is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to educating and informing the public and patients about clinical research. 

If you are interested in learning more about our studies contact the Clinical Research Center at 541-766-2163 or send an email to research@corvallisclinic.com.  Or, follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/corvallisclinicresearch.

 

- Julie Carrico is Associate Coordinator of The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center