Professor, Assistant Professor Receive Award from National Institute on Drug Abuse

Posted: July 2, 2018

Kristin Ashford, PhD, APRN, WHNP-BC, FAAN, professor, and Amanda Fallin-Bennett, PhD, RN, assistant professor, received an R34 award from the National Institute on Drug Abuse  entitled “Behavioral and Enhanced Perinatal Intervention for Cessation (B-EPIC): Reducing Tobacco use among Opioid Addicted Women.”

This three year, $688,500 award will focus on providing mothers a novel intervention for tobacco cessation, Behavioral and Enhanced Perinatal Intervention for Cessation (B-EPIC), in an established community MAT clinic. B-EPIC is designed to reduce tobacco-associated morbidity (e.g., preterm birth, NAS) and healthcare expenditures in pregnant women who are tobacco users receiving buprenorphine for opioid dependence.

Kristin Ashford received her BSN from Washburn University, Topeka, Kan., and a master's degree in nursing from the University of Louisville. She received her PhD in nursing from the University of Kentucky in 2007 and is a professor in the College of Nursing. Dr. Ashford began her research career as an NIH BIRCWH (Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health) Scholar. She currently serves as PI on an NIH COBRE (Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence) study in which she leads a multicenter trial across two states. She is administrator of the Kentucky GIFTS (Giving Infants and Families Tobacco-free Starts) program, working jointly with the Kentucky Department of Public Health to provide smoking cessation and wellness services to prenatal and postpartum women across Appalachia.

Dr. Ashford was named the 2010 Nurse Researcher of the Year by the Kentucky Nurses Association Nursing Education and Research Cabinet. She also received the Outstanding Early Career College/University Teacher Award from the Kentucky Academy of Science.

Dr. Amanda Fallin-Bennett is an active early-career tobacco control scientist with a focus on tobacco use and disparate populations. As a faculty associate in the Tobacco Policy Research Program, she is currently a Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH) scholar, and is developing a program of research focused on tobacco use and tobacco-related policies in mental health and substance abuse treatment facilities.

In June 2014, she completed a three-year postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Stanton Glantz at the University of California San Francisco’s Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education. She has led projects related to tobacco use, policy and prevention for vulnerable populations: in tobacco growing states; and among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender adults, college students, and bar-going young adults.

Dr. Fallin-Bennett has also led two multi-site capacity-building projects funded by California’s Tobacco Related Disease Research Program to evaluate smoke and tobacco-free college campus policies in California as an extension of her dissertation research. Dr. Fallin-Bennett teaches the undergraduate research course and serves as co-coordinator for the undergraduate research internship program.