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University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center
Publish Date: 01/08/02
Media Contact: AHC Public Relations, (513) 558-4553
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NIH Awards UC Grant for Spirituality in HIV/AIDS Study

Cincinnati--The National Institutes of Health has awarded the University of Cincinnati (UC) Medical Center a $1.5 million grant to study the impact of spirituality on quality of life in patients with HIV/AIDS. Joel Tsevat, MD, MPH, Director, Section of Outcomes Research, UC Division of General Internal Medicine, is the principal investigator of the study, along with Christina M. Puchalski, MD, from George Washington University Medical Center (GWUMC). Patient enrollment for this four-year project, which will be conducted at the UC Medical Center and GWUMC, will begin this winter.

A recent study conducted in Cincinnati showed that many patients with HIV/AIDS have a powerful will to live and a sense that life has improved. The NIH research will build on these studies by using more detailed measures and including a wider variety of patients.

"If we can figure out why certain patients with HIV/AIDS feel that their life is better now than it was before they knew they were infected, perhaps we can design interventions to help those who don't feel that way," Tsevat said. "We hope that this study will provide some answers."

More than 200 patients from UC Medical Center and 125-150 patients from GWUMC with various stages of AIDS will be interviewed to explore the relationship of spirituality to quality of life. Detailed questionnaires and a measurement of quality of life concerns reported by patients with HIV/AIDS will be used to conduct the study.

The Cincinnati team, which includes Richard Hornung, DrPH, Judith Feinberg, MD, and Tammy Powell, RN, from UC Medical Center will be working with Cincinnati consultants Sue Sherman, DPA and Karen Mandell, PharmD, who are playing a major role on the study. For more information about this study, contact Tsevat by phone at (513) 558-7581 or via e-mail at joel.tsevat@uc.edu.



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