Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Award (JCURA) recipients: Cherie Geering Curry and Melissa Buchanan

Our names are Melissa Buchanan and Cherie Geering Curry and we are fourth year nursing students at the University of Victoria School of Nursing. We were awarded the Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Award (JCURA) for research work with Dr. Lenora Marcellus. The larger scope of the research project is to look at the association between oral health and adverse events in pregnancy. Currently, we are developing a survey tool to explore the perceptions of women of childbearing age living in Victoria related to oral health care during pregnancy. This includes practices, access to dental care, barriers and utilization. We are applying for research ethics approval to conduct this survey as a pilot project. From there, we hope to apply for funds for a larger study covering Vancouver Island and British Columbia.

This survey is born from a research literature review conducted over the summer, 2011, by our amazing, collaborative and multidisciplinary team. Our team consists of nurses, medical students, nursing students, representatives from the First Nations and Inuit Branch (FNIB), community leaders, dentists, physicians, and dental hygienists. We presented this literature review as a scholarly poster at the Canadian Association of Perinatal and Women’s Health Nurses (CAPWHN) conference on October 28, 2011. The poster was well received and stimulated opportunities for discussion and networking.

We will be presenting our survey results via a poster presentation at the Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Fair on April 10, 2012 at the University of Victoria in the Michel Pujol Room, Student Union Building (SUB). Please join us! If you would like more information about our project, or our role in the Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Fair, please contact us at clcurry@uvic.ca or mbasso@uvic.ca.

From the 2012 Winter Communiqué