Patient & Family Support Services: Research

Philosophy

We believe in the clinician-scientist model in which clinical experience and research endeavors mutually inform and enhance each other for the benefit of our patients and families.

We strongly believe that our research endeavors should grow out of and be driven by our clinical experiences for the purpose of improving the lives of our patients and families, as well as the field.

Research ideas and collaborations that fit with our areas of interest and expertise are welcomed and encouraged, whether they come from trainees or seasoned investigators.

"We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology."

"Science is much more than a body of knowledge. It is a way of thinking. This is central to its success. Science invites us to let the facts in, even when they don’t conform to our preconceptions." --Carl Sagan

Ongoing Research Projects

  • Behavioral treatment for insomnia
  • Rapid pharmacological prevention and treatment of depression
  • Dignity therapy and its impact on positive psychological factors, such as joy, gratitude, and resilience
  • Characteristics and needs of patients and families receiving services from PFSS programs.
  • Study of wisdom in patients with advanced disease
  • Quality of life and legacy
  • Integrative medicine perspectives
  • Personal rituals to increase compassion and reduce burn-out among professional care providers
  • Perspectives on wisdom in hospice patients
  • Reflections on love in hospice patients

Studies Open for Active Recruitment

Positive Outcomes in Cancer Care: Emphasizing Quality of Life and Legacy

  • A randomized controlled-trial focused on support, reflections on life, and creating a legacy for hospice and palliative care patients.
  • Principal Investigator: Lori Montross-Thomas, PhD
  • American Cancer Society Grant, 2013-2018

Integrative Medicine Inpatient Questionnaire

  • A study of 100 patients’ perspectives on integrative medicine therapies and their potential benefit for care while in the hospital.
  • Principal Investigator: Lori Montross-Thomas, PhD
  • Westreich Foundation Grant, 2013-2014
  • Contact: Lori Montross-Thomas
Use of Personal Ritual among Hospice Staff following the Death of a Patient
  • A national online survey conducted via the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) regarding the use of personally-meaningful rituals; investigates how such practices may help reduce burnout and increase compassion among staff.
  • Principal Investigator: Lori Montross-Thomas, PhD
  • MAPI Research Trust: Catherine Pouget Grant Award, 2012-2014
Wisdom: A Qualitative Study in Hospice Patients
  • An interview study of 40 hospice patients to learn about their perspectives on wisdom; its definitions, the impact of age and/or illness on wisdom, and how wisdom may be strengthened in others.
  • Principal Investigator: Lori Montross-Thomas, PhD
  • Stein Institute for Research on Aging, 2012- 2015
  • Contact: Lori Montross-Thomas
The Most Loving Moment of Your Life: People’s End-of-Life Reflections on their Small Acts of Great Love
  • An interview study of 40 hospice patients to learn about their most memorable experiences of love across the lifespan, both given and received.
  • Principal Investigator: Lori Montross-Thomas, PhD
  • Stein Institute for Research on Aging, 2012- 2015
  • Contact: Lori Montross-Thomas