College of Health Professions Research Executive Summary FY22

Randal Davis, MBA
August 09, 2022
Partial Team for portable MRI-equipped ambulance Blue Sky Award winning project
Jillian Harvey, Ph.D., (right) pictured with some members of team working to equip ambulances with MRIs with funding from the MUSC Blue Sky Award.

Our Research By The Numbers*

5 th

in NIH funding among US Schools/Colleges of Allied Health and Health Professions


Million Awarded in Grant Funding


Funded Grant Awards


Grant Awards From Federal Sources

*Data available, as of August 9, 2022; final accounting for FY22 is not complete.

Research Project Highlights

Jim KrauseJames S. Krause, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor and Associate Dean for Research
Funder: US Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research
Award: $2.5 million over five years
Project Title: Quality Employment Outcomes throughout the Work Lifecycle: Application to Persons with Spinal Cord Injury, Multiple Sclerosis, and Stroke
Goal: The project focuses on the intersection of three critical areas in disability outcome – employment, participation, and health and function. Spinal cord injury (SCI), multiple sclerosis (MS), and stroke are neurologic conditions that may be associated with significant functional limitations leading to diminished likelihood of employment. A wide array of barriers and facilitators to employment exist. Very little is known about how SCI, MS, and stroke affect quality indicators of employment, such as earnings, benefits, job quality and satisfaction. This project addresses knowledge gaps by assessing quality employment outcomes among multiple diagnoses, measuring functional limitations and diagnostic specific indicators of severity.

Sara KnoxSara Knox, PT, DPT, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Division of Physical Therapy
Funder: NIH National Institute on Aging
Award: $689,000 over five years
Project Title: Potential New Barriers to Home Health Access for People with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias
Goal: Home health is an ideal post-acute setting for people living with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias (ADRD), yet people with ADRD experience barriers to accessing needed health care services. Unprecedented changes in home health in 2020, due to pandemic disruption and implementation of a new reimbursement model, pose a significant threat to home health access and quality for people with ADRD. This study examines the impact of these changes on home health access and quality of care for people with ADRD and will inform advocacy efforts, current home health practice, and future post-acute care health policy.

Michelle WoodburyMichelle L. Woodbury, Ph.D., OTR/L, Associate Professor, Division of Occupational Therapy
Funder: The Duke Endowment
Award: $250,000 over three years
Project Title: Integrating Stroke Telerehabilitation into MUSC’s Telehealth Network
Goal: Stroke is the leading cause of disability in the USA. Stroke rehabilitation is drastically underdosed. Survivors do not receive the amount of therapy needed for recovery despite decades of research in neuro- and rehabilitation science providing clear evidence of the potential for recovery, even many years after stroke. More options are needed to give survivors the opportunity to safely engage in rehabilitation during non-therapy hours in their own homes. Tele-rehabilitation meets this need. There is a need for tele-rehabilitation options across the state of South Carolina – especially in rural areas – where the incidence of stroke is high, and the age of stroke is low. This study will test integrating stroke rehabilitation services delivered via the MUSC Telehealth Network as an effective method to expand access to these services across the state.

Jillian HarveyJillian B. Harvey, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Healthcare Leadership & Management; Co-PI is Donna Roberts, MD, Professor of Radiology & Radiological Sciences
Funder: MUSC Office of the Vice President for Research – Inaugural Blue Sky Award
Award: $100,000
Project Title: A Feasibility Study of the Incorporation of a Portable MRI in a Telemedicine-Equipped Ambulance for Field Triage of Stroke Patients
Goal: When a patient experiences a stroke, the clock starts ticking for receiving effective, emergent care. For patients with strokes caused by blood clots, tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), an important clot-busting drug, can help clear blocked vessels if given within a narrow time window. Because tPA carries a risk for increased bleeding, scans are needed before treatment to ensure that the stroke is not a brain bleed. This award will study equipping ambulances with a new, portable version of a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner. This would allow a patient to be scanned while on their way to the hospital. Doctors at the patient’s destination could analyze the scans and decide whether to administer tPA, further cutting down the time to treatment.