Chief, Section of Palliative Care and Medical Ethics
Dr. Arnold has published on end-of-life care, hospice and palliative care, doctor-patient communication, and ethics education. His current research interests are focused on educational interventions to improve communication in life-limiting illnesses and better understanding how ethical precepts are operationalized in clinical practice. He is the Director of the Institute for Doctor-Patient Communication and the Medical Director of the UPMC Palliative and Supportive Institute.
Dr. Bulls has expertise in palliative care, pain management, substance use, and health services research in oncology. Her research is primarily focused on quality-of-life challenges faced by cancer patients, specifically cancer-related pain and neuropathy.
Dr. Merlin’s research focuses on chronic pain in people living with HIV (PLWH), and more generally, individuals with comorbid mental illness and addiction. Her studies range from pathogenesis to clinical epidemiology to behavioral interventions.
Dr. Schell’s research centers on physician communication skills training. She has developed and measured outcomes for a communication curriculum for nephrology fellows on palliative care topics.
Director, Palliative Research Center (PaRC)
Dr. Schenker’s primary research focus is understanding and improving provision of primary palliative care in oncology. Using mixed methods, her work has uncovered barriers to receipt of specialty palliative and led to the development and evaluation of a nurse-led primary palliative care intervention called CONNECT. Dr. Schenker has also published widely on topics including surrogate decision making, informed consent, healthcare advertising, and language barriers.