Davis receives AANP grant to advance cardiovascular self-care research 

UNC School of Nursing is proud to announce that Associate Professor Leslie Davis, PhD, RN, ANP-BC, FAAN, FAANP, FACC, FAHA, FPCNA, has been awarded a grant from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) for her project titled “Rehearse Self-care.” The grant funding will support her research aimed at enhancing self-care among individuals who have recently experienced acute coronary syndrome events. 

Davis’ project, “Rehearse Self-care,” focuses on the development and implementation of an individualized, virtually-delivered symptom tracking and self-care support intervention. This initiative seeks to determine the feasibility and acceptability of the intervention to improve self-care practices over time in men and women who have recently been hospitalized for acute coronary syndrome events. 

“I am grateful to receive this external funding for several reasons. First, external support of our team’s pilot work will serve as a foundation for a larger R01 application to follow. Second, support by the AANP acknowledges that nurse practitioners (as clinicians and researchers) can be leaders in designing and using digital technology to reduce the gap in care for heart attack survivors who are unable or unwilling to access care through traditional face-to-face means. Lastly, from a personal perspective, as an AANP member for over 20 years and a fellow for over 10 years, I am especially honored to receive this grant funding from a professional organization that is close to my heart.”

Leslie Davis 

Since receiving the AANP grant, Davis has made significant progress in her research project. She has been able to enroll a larger sample of subjects, introduce an attention control group focused on dietary education for heart-healthy eating, and provide participants with tablets and Wi-Fi access to educational resources, thereby eliminating barriers that may prevent engagement in traditional education methods. 

Looking ahead, Davis expresses her hopes for the broader impact of her research, stating, “My hope is that nurse practitioners (NPs) and other health care providers in primary care and cardiology specialty practices can use our intervention as a model for how to improve clinical care for patients with a recent heart attack.” She emphasizes, “We have the knowledge. We know what to do. We can make a difference by empowering our patients to enhance self-care after a heart attack and in doing so, we can help them prevent a recurrent heart attack.”  

This innovative initiative empowers patients to actively participate in their recovery after acute coronary syndrome events while equipping NPs and other healthcare providers with effective tools to enhance patient outcomes. By bridging the gap between traditional care and modern technology, this project holds the potential to prevent recurrent heart attacks, ultimately improving patients’ quality of life and advancing cardiovascular care practices.  

To learn more about the REHEARSe educational program and how it can benefit individuals recovering from heart attacks, please visit the official project website at https://www.rehearseselfcare.org/