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Tippie Faculty Member’s Collaborative Work Earns Obermann Grant

Nick Street, associate professor in the Tippie College of Business, and Ann Marie McCarthy, professor in the College of Nursing, received funding from the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies to develop a Web-based application that health care professionals can use to help children cope with painful medical testing and treatment procedures.

Funding for the project comes from a Center for Advanced Studies Spelman Rockefeller (CASSPR) grant from the Obermann Center. The grant provides up to $9,000 and is supported by the UI Laura Spelman Rockefeller Fund and the UI Office of the Vice President for Research.

About 4.4 million children in the United States require medical procedures that provoke pain and distress, according to Street and McCarthy. They note that without adequate pain control, children who experience such pain repeatedly can suffer immediate and long-term negative pathological conditions.

Nursing faculty have been working on using distraction to counter patient distress for several years. Recently, they began working with Street to develop the Computerized Predictive Model for Distraction, a data-driven Web-based application to predict child risk for distress in response to painful procedure, identify appropriate interventions, and provide individualized educational material. The CASSPR grant will allow them to make the program operational and pilot test the application. Many CASSPR grants are intended to support the early stages of research projects so that researchers can gather enough data to be competitive when seeking funds from external granting agencies. Since its inception the CASSPR program has resulted in numerous scholarly publications and almost $18 million in external funding.

The Obermann Center for Advanced Studies is dedicated to scholarship and intellectual exchange. Some Obermann Scholars work independently, stimulated by uninterrupted blocks of time and by informal conversation. Others work in close collaboration. Obermann Scholars have published numerous scholarly books and articles and have been awarded many external research grants and fellowships for projects begun at the center.

The grant to Street and McCarthy is one of two grants the Obermann Center awarded for studies led by University of Iowa faculty. The other study, led by Janet Williams, Kelting Professor of Nursing in the College of Nursing, focuses on minor children who care for family members with chronic disease and the effects this role has on the caregiver.

Street, a Henry B. Tippie Research Fellow, is a member of the Tippie College’s Department of Management Sciences and the director of the Ph.D. Program for the Department. Street, a native of Cambria, Iowa, received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and has been with the Tippie College since 1998.

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