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Sunnybrook Nursing Chair in Trauma, Emergency and Critical Care Research

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

Inventing the future of health care

Sunnybrook has 1.2 million patient visits each year. It is the largest single-site research-intensive teaching hospital in Canada. Fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, Sunnybrook provides outstanding quality clinical care; conducts groundbreaking research that changes the way patients are treated around the world, leading to new understanding and better treatments; provides expert training to health care professionals and scientists; develops innovative health promotion and prevention strategies; and influences public policy at all levels of government.

Trauma, Emergency & Critical Care Program

Providing Life-Saving Interventions and Care

The Trauma, Emergency & Critical Care (TECC) Program at Sunnybrook integrates the activities of the trauma, critical care and emergency departments to provide seamless clinical care, innovative education and a top-tier research platform for studying acutely ill and injured patients. In combining these specialties, the TECC program builds upon a legacy of innovation and excellence. In 2008, the Sunnybrook Board of Directors identified trauma as a corporate strategic priority, thereby recognizing the hospital’s international renown in this area and dedicating resources to its growth. One area of exciting growth is in the advancement of nursing science with the creation of a new nursing research position, the limited-term TD Nursing Professorship in Critical Care Research.

Meet Dr. Louise Rose

TD Nursing Professor in Critical Care Research

Dr. Louise Rose is a nurse, researcher, mentor, leader and professor. In her second year of a five-year limited term as Sunnybrook’s TD Nursing Professor in Critical Care Research, Rose is drawing on 16 years of clinical experience in the field of critical care nursing to inform her research. This foundation of knowledge includes bedside, managerial and clinical education roles on cardiothoracic, pediatric and trauma specialty units, as well medical and surgical intensive care units in England, New Zealand and Australia. Since completing her doctoral studies in 2007, Rose has been focused on building a program of research studying the clinical outcomes and experience of critically ill patients. One of her areas of focus has been severe pain experienced by patients in the intensive care unit.

Although pain can protect us by forcing us to rest an injury or reduce activity, the experience of being in a state of uncontrolled pain is horrible and frightening, and can have a profound effect on our quality of life. Uncontrolled pain can delay healing, decrease appetite, increase stress, disrupt sleep, and cause anxiety and depression.

In the hospital, a reliable way to assess and determine treatment for pain is to ask patients to self-report whether they have pain and how it is. However, pain assessment for critically ill patients is challenging because they may not be fully awake or aware due to their injury or due to medication. They may also have tubes or equipment preventing them from speaking.

In response to these challenges to assessing and treating pain, Rose and her colleagues worked to implement the critical care pain observation tool (CPOT) at Sunnybrook. This tool uses objective measures to assess pain such as facial expression, body movements, muscle tension and compliance with the mechanical ventilator (breathing machine). The team worked with leaders to redesign documentation tools and educate clinical staff.

The results of the study showed a significant increase in pain assessments being carried out by clinicians using the CPOT tool and related changes in pain medication and sedative administration—that is more pain medication for those who were identified as being under-medicated and less pain medication for those who were identified as being over-medicated. The next step for Rose and her colleagues is to conduct further work with a modification of the CPOT for brain-injured patients.

Endowed Nursing Chair in Trauma, Emergency and Critical Care Research

Generating and translating knowledge to improve the experience and clinical outcomes of acutely ill and injured patients

An endowed Nursing Chair in Trauma, Emergency and Critical Care Research will ensure that nursing science continues to grow and evolve within the TECC program. The chair will develop and sustain a new, innovative and productive program of research focused on improving the experience and clinical outcomes of acutely ill and injured patients. The chair will be a member of Sunnybrook Research Institute within the Evaluative Clinical Sciences platform and will be affiliated with the Lawrence S. Bloomberg faculty of nursing at the University of Toronto, a leading research-intensive faculty with numerous research chairs.

Through this affiliation, the chair will provide local, national and international leadership in the generation and translation of knowledge to support innovations in and improvements to the care of the acutely ill and injured patient. The chair will also have the opportunity to engage with students at the B.Sc.N., Masters, PhD and postdoctoral levels.

Furthermore, the role will contribute to the achievement of Sunnybrook’s practice-based research and innovation strategic plan. The chair will be recognized as a leader within the organization, and will have the opportunity to work with inter-professional care teams to lead, develop and support clinically focused research. This role will be a strategic addition to Sunnybrook’s vision of inventing the future of health care.

Nursing Chair in Trauma, Emergency and Critical Care Research

Endowed $4 million
10-year limited term $2 million
5-year limited term $1 million

If you have any questions about the Nursing Chair in Trauma, Emergency and Critical Care Research, contact:

Jessica Carn
Advancement director
Sunnybrook Foundation
Phone: 416-480-4560
Email: jessica.carn@sunnybrook.ca

Lisa Di Prospero
Director practice-based research and innovation
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Phone: 416-480-6100, ext. 89513
Email: lisa.diprospero@sunnybrook.ca

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