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Meritus Health Research Institute

The expert team at Meritus Health is advancing the science of medicine by performing cutting edge research right here in Washington County. We are committed to improving medical care and outcomes through research innovation. Participating in research can help benefit future medical treatments and Meritus Health values the commitment made by our patients who choose to participate. Our clinical research department provides support by carefully selecting clinical research trials addressing the needs in our community for expert care close to home.

Research addresses health issues worldwide. Over the decades research has successfully eradicated various diseases such as Polio, Measles, Mumps & Rubella, and Smallpox to name a few. Scientists are still working on eradicating Malaria, Trachoma, and COVID-19 among others. To learn more about how research has affected health issues over the years click here.

Research has made great advances in treatments for various health issues such as breast cancer like radiotherapy, hormone therapy and targeted chemotherapy with hopes to possibly help patients and minimizing side effects. Here at Meritus we continuously strive to offer these advanced treatments. If you need help in locating a clinical trial please complete this form and we will be glad to assist you in your search. Please send completed forms to Angie Angstadt at Angela.Angstadt@MeritusHealth.com.

Deciding whether to be a part of a clinical trial may be a very tough and worrisome questions. The answer will not be the same for everyone.

Most people are concerned about taking part in a clinical trial because they're not sure what it will mean for them. Get as much information as you need to make the choice that's right for you. Each clinical trial has benefits and risks. Before deciding to be in one, you need to have all your questions answered. Make a list of questions, take notes, or even have a family member or friend with you to help remember the answers and think of other questions. Some questions may not have clear answers as each person's situation is different.

HERE ARE A FEW QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER, BUT THESE ARE NOT THE ONLY QUESTIONS TO ASK.

  • Why do I want to take part in a clinical trial?
  • What are my goals, and how realistic are they?
  • Do I have all the information I need to make an informed decision?
  • Have I weighed the benefits against the risks?
  • Who will have my personal and medical information?
  • How much will this cost me?
  • What is my doctor's opinion about my future if I decide to take part (or not) in this clinical trial?
  • Have I looked at my other options?

If you are interested in learning about the types and phases of clinical trials click here.

Meritus not only provides these opportunities close to home but Meritus is also committed to protecting the people in our community who are participating clinical trials by having an Institutional Review Board (IRB). The main responsibility of the IRB is to protect the rights and welfare of the participants and their privacy. To better understand the IRB click here.

For researcher/physician use only

Institutional Review Board Information

Meritus Medical Center and the John R Marsh Cancer Center are committed to providing the best comprehensive care for our community, including research. Meritus is dedicated to protect the rights and welfare of all individuals who participate as subjects in research. It is the responsibility of every physician, nurse, and student to ensure that formal IRB approval is obtained before initiating contact with human subjects in any research project.

If you have any questions or would like assistance, contact the Office of Human Subjects Protection at 301-790-8825 or email Christine.Fornwalt@meritushealth.com.

Hours of Operation and important information: 

  • Tues., Wed. & Thurs 8:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
  • IRB meetings held first Wednesday of the month.
  • Located in Robinwood Professional Center, suite 229, room 2224

Below are links for forms needed to start the IRB process. If you have questions or need assistance call the Office for Human Subject Protection at 301-790-8825.

Additional helpful links:

 

Active Clinical Studies

Currently Enrolling Participants

A Phase 2/3, Randomized, 3-Part Study to Investigate the Efficacy and Safety of Dupilumab in Adult and Adolescent Patients with Eosinophilic Gastritis With or Without Eosinophilic Duodenitis - Protocol #R668-EGE-2213A Phase 2/3, Randomized, 3-Part Study to Investigate the Efficacy and Safety of Dupilumab in Adult and Adolescent Patients with Eosinophilic Gastritis With or Without Eosinophilic Duodenitis - Protocol #R668-EGE-2213

Principal Investigator: Nelson Ferreira, MD

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A Prospective Blood Sample Collection Study to Develop and Validate a Panel of Protein-based Biomarkers in Patients with Pulmonary Nodules

Principal Investigator: Victoria Giffi, MD

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Diabetic Retinopathy Screening using Smartphone-Based Fundus Photography and Artificial Intelligence. A Proof of Concept Study in a Community Based Clinic

Principal Investigator: John Wroblewski, MD

Co-Investigator: Jay Berdia, MD

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Detecting Cancers Earlier Through Elective Plasma-based CancerSEEK Testing - Ascertaining Serial Cancer Patients to Enable New Diagnostic II (DETECT -ASCEND 2)

Principal Investigator: Victoria Giffi, MD

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Correct-MRD II: Seconds Colorectal Cancer Clinical Validation Study to Predict Recurrence Using A Circulating Tumor DNA Assay To Detect Minimal Residual Disease

Principal Investigator: Victoria Giffi, MD

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Translational Medicine: Discovery and Evaluation of Biomarkers/Pharmacogenomics for the Diagnosis and Personalized Management of Patients

Principal Investigator: Victoria Giffi, MD

Observational Clinical Research Studies

Principal Investigator

Name of study

Allison, Crystal

Comparing Outcomes in Diabetic Stroke Patients

Andrews, Katelyn

Correlation Between the Utilization of an Emergency Room Sepsis Order Set and Antibiotic Administration Times in the Emergency Room

Bahsali, Muna

Using Square Breathing to Decrease the Subjective Experience of Stress in Nurses Working in an Outpatient Chemotherapy Treatment Center

Bert, Kristine

Implementing an Evidenced-Based Practice Change in Outpatient Medical Oncology

Bream, Karen

Compassion Fatigue in Maternal Child Nursing Staff Caring for the Substance Abuse Population

Buckley, Brooke

Virtual Triage Beta Test

Baxter, Brandy

Eat, Live, Excel Effect on Self Efficacy

Bejarano-Garcia, Cesar

Outpatient Antibiotic Therapy as a Significant Risk Factor for Community-Associated Clostridium Difficile in Adults and its Impact in a Community Hospital

Blyler, Crystal

Medicaid Emergency Psychiatric (services) Demonstration (MEPD) Evaluation

Bonatti, Hugo &

Gona, Sridhar

Accessibility and Impact of Minimal Invasive General Surgery in the Rural Setting

Bonatti, Hugo, George, Aaron,

Gona, Sridhar & Feaga, Catherine

Significance of Multidrug Resistant, Rare and Unusual Pathogens in a Rural Hospital

Bonatti, Hugo, George, Aaron,

Gona, Sridhar & Feaga, Catherine

Significance of Multi-Vitamin Deficiences in a Rural Hospital

Bowser, Zachary

Comparing Activated Partial Thrombin Time (aPTT) to Anti-Factor Xa Assay for Monitoring the Anticoagulation Effects of Heparin

Burleson, Melissa

Will the resource for Meritus Medical Center of the use of art therapy, which provides scholarly evidence for the support of this therapy for compassion fatigue, have an outcome that provides new graduate nurses with improved knowledge and treatment of compassion fatigue?

Chaudhry, Nimra

Clinical Outcomes Associated with Pharmacist Reviews on Identified Sepsis Patients

Costantino, Caitlynn

Routine Stethoscope Cleaning and Inquiry into Impact for Practice

Dean, Jeanette &

Gona, Sridhar

Effectiveness of monoclonal antibody treatment for prevention of hospital admissions for severe COVID 19 from early strain to Omicron variant

DelTufo, Dana

Efficacy and Safety of Utilizing Vancomycin AUC/MIC Monitoring for Pneumonia, Neutropenic Fever, Bacteremia, Endocarditis, osteomyelitis, or Meningitis Cause by Staphylococcus Aureus in a Community Hospital

Domatova, Marina

Bilirubin Management in Newborns

Fernandsa, Bronessa

Retrospective Analysis of the Appropriate Use of Acid Suppressive Therapy at Meritus Medical

Gona, Sridhar &

Money, Mary 

 

Association of Digoxin Toxicity and Initiation of New Medication(s).

Gona, Sridhar & Cimino-Fiallos, Nicole

Expansion of the Emergency Department Drug Surveillance (EDDS) System

Gona, Sridhar & Money, Mary

Incidence of Clostridium Difficile Hospitalization Associated with Prior Antibiotic Therapy

Goodrich, Caleb

Incidence of Acute Kidney Injury in Patients Who Received a Loading Dose of Vancomycin While on Concomitant Piperacillin-Tazobactam and Vancomycin

Greenlee, April

Attitudes Physicians and Nurses Have Regarding Workplace Collaboration and the Subsequent Effect on Patient Outcomes

Hanif, Rashid

The Diagnostic Utility of Video Capsule Endoscope in Community Practice a retrospective study and Various GI Symptoms with Small Intestinal Bacteria Over Growth and Response to Antibiotic

Hanif, Rashid

Response to antibiotics in small intestine bacterial overgrowth in a community gastroenterology experience

Hanif, Rashid

Chart review of Video Capsule Endoscope om a Community Practice: Indications, Results, Complications and Outcomes

Harne-Britner, Sarah

Project to Publication - A Writing Mentorship Program

Harne-Britner, Sarah

Evaluating the Business Case of nurse Residency and Transition Programs

Harne-Britner, Sarah

A Multi-site Quasi-Experimental Pew/Post Test Design Study Studying Knowledge and End-User Gaming Experience a Ramified Nursing Orientation Teaching Method

Henderson, Laura

2014 Washington County Public Health Needs Assessment

Heuston, Melanie

Insights Into Differences Between Perceptions of Leadership Practices: Nurse Managers, Day Shift, and Night Shift Nurses."

Higgins, Tracey

Increasing Palliative Care Referral for Heart Failure Patients Through Aggregate Data Evaluation of the Current Palliative Care Referral Process

Hill, Robin

Timing of Variables in the Reduction of Hypoglycemia

Holsinger, Jane

Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) Mobile Phone Disinfection

Jackson, Stephanie & Katelyn Andrews

Evaluation of melatonin versus standards of care in the prevention of ICU delirium in critical care patients of in a community hospital

Jorgenson, Danielle

Procalcitonin Protocol Utilization in Pneumonia Patients: A prospective Cohort

Keen, Padric

Implementation of a Pharmacist Involved Code Blue Response at a Large Community Hospital

Kirkpatrick, Rebecca

The Implementation of an Evidence-Based Patient Education Stoplight Tool to Reduce Cancer Treatment-induced Diarrhea

Kirby, Jordan; Shaw, Courtney & Schultheis, Kelly

Does Educating Labor and Delivery Nurses on the Use of Non-Pharmacological Approaches to Labor Influence Their Perception of Use in Their Practice

Matsushita, Kunihiro

Washington County Health Initiative

Joshi, Maulik

Eradicating the Loneliness Epidemic

Larrimore, Christopher

A retrospective study investigating occurrence of COVID-19 reinfection and possible correlation to new onset Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CF).

Leaver, Cynthia

YRBS 2013: Surveillance of Mental Health Services in Eastern Region Middle and High Schools

Lewis, Christel

An Action Research Approach to Evaluate the Effect of Professional Advancement Program Redesign on Nurse Perception, Retention, and Professional Practice

Long, Karen

Quiet Time

Mardeli, Rhiannon

Self-Reported Penicillin Allergies and Their Effects on Adverse Reactions in a Community Hospital

Matsushita, Kunihiro

Washington County Health Initiative (moved from expedited)

Mbamalu, Genevieve

Implementation of an Observation Unit at a Regional Medical Center to Improve Patient Outcomes and Efficiency of Care Delivery

McCormack, Michael

A4061083 - Real World Chart Review Study of Management of Adverse Events of Special Interest in Patients Taking Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors to Treat Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma

McMahon, Janet

Improving Administration Safety in the Clinical Environment

Money, Mary &

Gona, Sridhar

Evaluation of appropriate ordering of Urine Analysis and subsequent diagnosis and use of antibiotic therapy for presumed urinary tract infections in Meritus Medical Center ER and Urgent Care facilities

Morgan, Damara

Implementation of a Skin Care Bundle to Prevent Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries.

Over, Brooke

The Benefit of a Parenteral Nutrition Support Team Consulting on Patients Receiving TPN during a n Inpatient Stay and the Typical Characteristics of These Patients

Patel, Gina

Evaluation of Continuous Sedation Therapy in Mechanically Ventilated Patients in the Intensive Care Unit

Patel, Shefali

Evaluating Relationship Between the Use of Proton-Pump Inhibitors and Clostridium Infection and Determining Efficacy of Probiotics in such Patients

Pennington, Melissa

Sleep Quality Among Nurses: A Descriptive Study

Platz, Elizabeth

Request for Use of Tissue Block and Slides from Decedent ARIC and CLUE Participants

Ribovich, Alayna

Evaluating the Safety and Efficacy of Transitioning from a Fixed-Dose Protocol to a Weight-Based Protocol for Heparin Infusion and Titration

Ribovich, Alayna

Direct Oral Anticoagulant Use in Patients of High Body Weight - an 8 Month Review

Rodriguez, Angel

Pharmacist Driven Implementation of a Controlled Substance Prescribing Protocol in a Family Medicine Clinic

Rosendale, Roxann

A Pilot Study Exploring Barriers to Early Mobility: Implementing a Mobility Protocol

Rosendale, Roxann

Is Taking Vital Signs Every Four Hours the Best Nursing Practice for the Stable Medical Surgical Patient

Schiro, James

Analysis of Stages Billed for Mohs Surgery in the United States Using 2014 Medicare Claims Data

Schnebly, Katherine

10, 000 Step Challenge for Beside Nurses Working 12 Hour Shifts

Schultheis, Kelly

“Improving Pain Management in Opioid Dependent Laboring Women at Meritus Medical Center”

Scott, Kaitlin

Evaluation of Sedation Therapy in the ICU

Smith, Sara

Mental Health Patients' and Case Managers Perception of Patient Needs and Reasons for Patient Disengagement

Sprecher, Lori

An Innovative Approach to Care for Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome

Wagoner, Melissa

Routine Cleaning of Nylon Blood Pressure Cuffs in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit

Ware, Tamara

Best Practice for Pressure Injury Prevention: Bi-weekly Nursing Skin Rounds

Welty, Megan

Improving Glucose Control through the Use of a Nutritional Management of Diabetes Mellitus Education Packet: A Quality Improvement Initiative

Williams, James &

Gona, Sridhar

Bamlanivimab and Reduction of Hospitalization and Death in COVID-19 Patients

Williams, James &

Gona, Sridhar

Comparison of characteristics and outcomes of bleeding patients treated with Andexanet alfa and 4 factor PCC (4 FPCC): A feasibility study

Zimmerman, Wendy

The Impact of COVID-19 on Faith Community Nurses’ Practice Strategies and Interventions.

Research Articles, Publications & Scholarly Works

Maryland EDDS Bulletin

FEATURED IN: CESAR - Center for Substance Use, Addiction and Health Research
AUTHORS: Sridhar Rao Gona
PUBLICATION DATE: December 4, 2023

Project to Publication - A Writing Mentorship Program 

FEATURED IN: Clinical Nurse Specialist, November/December 2023 - Volume 37 - Issue 6
AUTHORS: Sarah Harne-Britner, DNP, RN, ACNS-BC, NEA-BC and Cynthia A. Leaver, PhD, APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP
PUBLICATION DATE: November 2023

Treatment of Factor-Xa Inhibitor-associated Bleeding with Andexanet Alfa or 4 Factor PCC: A
Multicenter Feasibility Retrospective Study

FEATURED IN: Western Journal of Emergency Medicine: Integrating Emergency Care with Population Health

AUTHORS: Singer, Adam J., Concha, Mauricio and Williams, James
PUBLICATION DATE: August 22, 2023

FAILURE OF CURRENT DIGOXIN MONITORING FOR TOXICITY: NEW MONITORING RECOMMENDATIONS TO MAINTAIN THERAPEUTIC LEVELS FOR EFFICACY

FEATURED IN: Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine
AUTHORS: Sridhar Rao Gona, Joel Rosenberg, Ria C. Fyffe-Freil, Janet M. Kozakiewicz and Mary E. Money.
PUBLICATION DATE: July 3, 2023

FRICTIONLESS ACCESS LEADS TO REDUCED DISPARITIES IN CARE: A CASE STUDY OF A REGIONAL DRIVE-THROUGH COVID-19 TESTING CENTER

Brightness from obscurity.
That is one approach to think about what we have learned from the COVID-19 pandemic. As dark a time that has been in the world, we have learned a lot; some of which is not new knowledge, but profound and will be used to make health better. COVID-19 showed in stark reality that inequities and disparities in care are prominent and pervasive. These disparities are embarrassing as a society and require systematic, intentional strategies to address. No profession is more apt for leading this change than the Quality profession.
 
Leveraging multiple quality competencies of measurement, data analytics, performance improvement, leadership, change management and population health, our organization, Meritus Health, sought to provide frictionless access to COVID-19 testing through the implementation of a Drive-Thru COVID-19 testing center. As our article shows, this approach largely resulted in representative testing of the population by race and ethnicity - that is, no disparities in care by race/ethnicity for access to COVID-19 testing. We believe that frictionless access which did not require payment, a doctor's note, or symptoms made a difference in health equity. We provide additional details and learnings in the article. More work needs to be done and quality will lead the way.
Brightness from obscurity.
FEATURED IN: NAHQ
AUTHORS: Maulik Joshi, Dr.P.H., Ethan Feldmiller, MHA, Lynnae Messner, CPhT, Sridhar Rao Gona, MS, MHA
PUBLICATION DATE: Dec. 14, 2022
 

IMPLEMENTATION OF AN EVIDENCE-BASED PATIENT EDUCATION STOPLIGHT TOOL TO REDUCE CANCER TREATMENT-INDUCED DIARRHEA IMPLEMENTATION OF AN EVIDENCE-BASED PATIENT EDUCATION STOPLIGHT TOOL TO REDUCE CANCER TREATMENT-INDUCED DIARRHEA

Featured in: Sigma Nursing Repository
Authors: Rebecca Kirkpatrick, BSN, RN, OCN (primary investigator), Kristine Bert, BSN, RN, OCN (co-investigator), Valerie Rinehart, BSN, RN, OCN, ONN-CG (co-investigator), Melissa Fink, BSN, RN, OCN(co-investigator)
Publication Date: Dec. 20, 2022

FAITH COMMUNITY NURSING AND COVID-19-CREATIVE AND INSPIRED PRACTICE

FEATURED IN: Journal of Christian Nursing
AUTHORS: Shackelford, Judy; Zimmerman, Wendy; Coleman, Kathleen; Henley, Lorie; Johnson, Betsy A.; Donovan, Laureen
PUBLICATION DATE: November 10, 2022

REDISCOVERING MY ROOTS: LESSONS FROM A COVID-19 UNIT

FEATURED IN: Nursing 2022
AUTHORS: Shannon R. Crilly, B.S.N., RN, CMSRN
PUBLICATION DATE: June 2022

FOR COMMUNITY HEALTH, IT’S TIME TO MOVE FROM ASSESSMENT TO IMPROVEMENT

FEATURED IN: Modern Healthcare
AUTHORS: Maulik Joshi, Dr. P.H., Andrew Maul, M.D. and Lynnae Messner, CPh.T.
PUBLICATION DATE: August 10, 2021
 
Vaccine Equity Index Shows Reduction in Maryland Covid-19 Vaccination Disparity in Less Than Two Months
FEATURED IN: NEJM CATALYST
AUTHORS: Andrew Maul, M.D., M.B.A., Kavitha Reddy, M.H.S.A. & Maulik Joshi, Dr.P.H.
PUBLICATION DATE: April 23, 2021

WEARABLE TECHNOLOGIES- WHERE DO THEY FIT IT?

FEATURED IN: Healthtech Magazine -MD Tech Review
AUTHOR: William Jason Cole
PUBLICATION DATE: April 2021

INNOVATIONS IN CARE DELIVERY

FEATURED INNEJM CATALYST
AUTHOR: MAULIK JOSHI, DR.P.H.
PUBLICATION DATE: Feb. 17, 2021

NURSE LEADERS AND STAFF AS PARTNERS TO MANAGE GRIEF AND BUILD RESILIENCY DURING COVID-19

FEATURED IN: NURSELEADER.COM
AUTHORS: MELANIE M. HEUSTON, D.N.P., RN, NEA-BC, CAROL GROVE, M.S.N., RN, NEA-BC AND SARAH HARNE-BRITNER, D.N.P., RN, ACNS-BC, NEA-BC and Bonnie Artman Fox, M.S., LMFT
PUBLICATION DATE: Feb. 10, 2021

YOU NEED A HERD FOR HERD IMMUNITY

FEATURED IN: NEJM Catalyst
AUTHORS: Aaron E. George, D.O. & Maulik S. Joshi, Dr.P.H.
PUBLICATION DATE: July 23, 2020

HUNDREDS OF DAYS OF ACTION AS A START TO ADDRESS HUNDREDS OF YEARS OF INEQUITY

FEATURED IN: NEJM Catalyst
AUTHORS: Maulik S. Joshi, Dr.P.H.
PUBLICATION DATE: July 13, 2020

PREVENTING FALLS AMONG BEHAVIORAL HEALTH PATIENTS

FEATURED IN: American Journal of Nursing
AUTHORS: Stephanie Ann Ocker, B.S.N., RN-BC, Sandra A. Barton, M.S., RN-BC, Norma Bollinger, M.S.N., RN, Cynthia A. Leaver, Ph.D., APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP, Sarah Harne-Britner, D.N.P., RN, ACNS-BC, NEA-BC, and Melanie M. Heuston, D.N.P., RN, NEA-BC
PUBLICATION DATE: July 2020

QUALITY IMPROVEMENT IN ACTION: REVISED CRITICAL BLOOD GLUCOSE VALUE

FEATURED IN: American Nurse Journal Vol. 15, No. 5.
AUTHOR: Crystal C. Allison, B.S.N., RN, CDCES
PUBLICATION DATE: May 2020

ROUTINE DISINFECTION OF MOBILE COMMUNICATION DEVICES IN THE POSTANESTHESIA CARE UNIT

FEATURED IN: Journal of PeriAnesthesia Nursing Vol 34, No 6
AUTHORS: Melissa Wagoner, RN, CPAN, Staci Snyder, B.S.N., RNC, Melanie McCarty, RN, Lynn Reed, RN, Shannon Flook, RN, Jane Holsinger, B.S.N., RN, CPAN (Ret), Cynthia A. Leaver, Ph.D., APRN, FNP-BC
PUBLICATION DATE: December 2019
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