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Emory School of Nursing Assistant Professor, Dr. Jessica Wells, Receives Grant for Implementing an Evidence-Based, Multilevel Intervention to Promote HPV Vaccination among HIV Positive Adult

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J. Michael Moore
Dir. of Communications

The NIH National Institute of Health (NIH) has awarded its grant for Implementing an Evidence-Based, Multilevel Intervention to Promote HPV Vaccination among HIV Positive Adults to Jessica Wells, PhD, RN, WHNP-BC, an assistant professor with Emory University's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing. The R01 Research Project grant provides funding for five years of $1,954,690 towards a novel approach to address a serious and preventable public health problem by using an efficacious, evidence-based intervention on a new target population.

As people living with HIV (PLWH) are aging, comorbidities such as HPV-related anal cancer are emerging as a new public health concern for this population. HPV vaccination can be part of a successful primary cancer prevention plan among PLWH. In efforts to decrease the personal, clinical, and public health burden of anal cancer and other HPV-related disease, Dr. Wells proposes to tailor and implement the effective, evidence-based, multi-level 4 PillarsTM Transformation program within HIV clinics to promote the uptake of the HPV vaccine among PLWH. The findings are anticipated to have a significant impact in the field of improving cancer outcomes in a high-risk and aging HIV population.

The R01 Research Project grant gives Dr. Wells and the School of Nursing the opportunity to examine and learn from this important topic. This award will bring together a multidisciplinary research team with faculty from SON, SOM, and RSPH with rich expertise in the behavioral and psychosocial aspects of cancer prevention in PLWH, HPV vaccination in young adults and vulnerable populations, and intervention implementation in rural populations to successfully carry out the aims of this research grant among multiple community HIV clinics across the state of Georgia.

Dr. Wells is an Assistant Professor, tenure track, and received a PhD from Emory University in 2012, along with a Certificate in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in 2015 at Emory University. She earned a BSN from Howard University in 2006. Dr. Wells’ overarching focus is cancer control and prevention in HIV infected and vulnerable populations. She recently completed a K01 Career Development Award where she examined individual, interpersonal, and neighborhood factors of adherence to follow up after an abnormal anal Pap test in HIV infected individuals. The National Institutes of Health, American Cancer Society, and Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society have supported her research. For more information on Dr. Jessica Wells, visit her faculty profile. To learn more about the R01 Research Project grant, visit the National Institute of Health website.

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