C O M M U N I T Y E N G A G E M E N T
Clinical Research Center without walls
Danise Gonzalez is one of
CAREFULLY CONDUCTED clinical trials are the safest and fastest way to discover new treatments and approaches to care that improve health. The Clinical and Translational Science Center’s Clinical Research Center (CCRC) is a specialized unit with facilities and experienced clinical staff who support the university’s research mission. The center offers essential services for health researchers and study participants, from implementing study protocols to fostering enrollment and retention through a robust travel program.
The CCRC is a collaboration between UC Davis and the Veterans Affairs (VA) Northern California Healthcare System to advance state-of-the-art clinical research. The CCRC’s main facility, located at the Sacramento VA Medical Center in Mather, Calif., occupies 8,000 square-feet of space. It contains a metabolic kitchen, core laboratory, body composition unit, patient day room, and nine patient beds for procedures that require extended outpatient or overnight stays. PET, MRI and standard radiology imaging is available on site along with blood sampling, investigational drug administration, monitoring, invasive procedure assistance, EKG or cardiac monitoring, and related procedures.
“The CCRC is a versatile facility that has hosted a wide range of clinical studies,” said CCRC’s medical director Ted Wun, who also is a professor of medicine and pathology and laboratory medicine and chief of the Division of Hematology and Oncology. “These include prolonged stays for complex metabolic studies, phase I studies of new therapies for sickle cell disease, hemophilia, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease medications, as well as right heart catheterization for pulmonary hypertension studies and fat biopsies for metabolic studies.”
The CCRC also has a satellite center in the Ticon I building on the UC Davis Sacramento campus, and an active travel program whereby members of the CCRC team visit study participants throughout the UC Davis campus and beyond to conduct evaluations, obtain blood samples and perform procedures on participants who find clinical facilities intimidating or have difficulty traveling.
“We regularly travel to Stanislaus, San Joaquin, Yolo and Bay Area counties, visiting participants in their own homes, in Head Start facilities and farming areas, and via telehealth,” said CCRC nurse manager Nicole Mullen. “Our program fosters enrollment and retention by making it more convenient for community members to participate in research.”
The CCRC team includes nurses who have extensive training and experience in carrying out study protocols and adhering to university and government research policies and regulations; a nurse practitioner who offers a wide range of services such as physical assessments, biopsies and other invasive procedures, and bedside monitoring for participants receiving a higher-risk infusion; and a comprehensive support staff that includes an exercise physiologist, laboratory technician, research coordinators and a research dietitian.
CCRC services are available to all faculty members, residents, postgraduate fellows and medical and nursing students. Learn more by visiting http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/ctsc/area/crc/index.html on the Web or by an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.