PHOTO: Leah Frain

Leah Frain

Leah Frain, DNPc, FNP-C is the recipient of the Nurses Educational Funds (NEF) Laura D. Smith National Student Nurses' Association (NSNA) Scholarship. Leah is a doctoral student at Regis College in Weston, MA. She received her undergraduate (BSN) in 1995 and graduate (MSN) degree in 1998, both from the University of Florida. Leah has known she wanted to be a nurse for as long as she can remember, and her empathetic nature and love for children are the reason she chose to focus on pediatric nursing.

Leah is pursuing her Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) to develop a greater foundation in research. Leah's current role is the Nurse Practitioner (NP) pulmonary consultant for a surgical team specializing in disorders of the esophagus and airway, including esophageal atresia and tracheomalacia. In her role as a provider for a medically complex population, Leah saw that the care of the parents and caregivers is as critical as the care of the pediatric patient. One of the things she noticed is that a parent's belief in their ability to care for their child plays a significant role in the child's outcomes. This led her to embark on identifying interventions that can improve parental self-efficacy.

Leah's current research is focused on improving parental self-efficacy in parents of children with airway abnormalities through a standardized education program. This education initiative aims to improve parental knowledge, confidence, and overall self-efficacy. In developing this, Leah hopes to improve care by creating standardized education programs that can be expanded for use with other diagnoses.

Other research topics Leah has been involved in include clinical outcomes after a posterior tracheopexy and the development of a tracheomalacia scoring tool. Obtaining a DNP will enable Leah to pursue more research opportunities and develop evidence-based practice changes to improve the quality of health care for pediatric patients and their parents.

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