Staff Profile

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Career Summary

Biography

Dr Amy Waller is an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow and an Investigator in the Priority Research Centre for Health Behaviour (PRCHB) at the University of Newcastle. She completed her PhD in Behavioural Science in Medicine in 2010. She was employed as a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow with the University of Calgary/Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary, Canada between 2010 and 2012. She began working with the PRCHB in 2012. Her research focuses on behavioural aspects of health with special interests in end of life issues, palliative care, psychosocial wellbeing and caregiver/support person wellbeing. Her work has spanned the disease continuum with an emphasis on treatment and end of life phases.

Qualifications

  • PhD (Behavioural Science), University of Newcastle, 17/06/2010
  • Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) Honours, University of Newcastle, 15/12/2003

Research

Research keywords

  • behavioural research
  • cancer
  • end of life
  • health services
  • stroke

Research expertise

I have contributed to a range of research projects tackling clinically relevant issues in cancer treatment and end of life care. The most notable of these are: (1) the development and testing of practice guidelines and rigorous measures to assess palliative care needs of advanced cancer patients and their families; (2) large-scale studies describing the natural history of distress and the efficacy of screening programs in newly diagnosed cancer patients; and (3) developing a framework for establishing research priorities and applying this to evidence-practice gaps in cancer control in NSW. My current focus is on the preferences and experiences of patients, families and health care providers in relation to end of life decision making across a range of settings including outpatient oncology, acute care and palliative care settings.

I have published 26 peer-reviewed articles, 2 peer-reviewed book chapters and 4 commissioned reports. These papers have been published in high ranking journals for the field such as Journal of Clinical Oncology, Journal National Comprehensive Cancer Network and British Journal of Cancer. Since 2005, I have given 3 invited and 25 conference presentations at peak meetings. Key presentations include IPOS 14th World Congress where I was shortlisted for the Prize for Best Oral Presentation (2012); the COSA Annual Meeting where I was shortlisted for the Prize for Best Poster in 2009; and BRCC (2009), where I was awarded the Student Award.

I have been awarded research support of over $1 million including an NHMRC Post-doctoral Scholarship, an NHMRC project grant (CID), ARC DECRA and a Canadian Institute of Health Research PORT Fellowship. I am an investigator on three currently held competitive grants examining the delivery of patient-centred care to cancer patients in Australia (CIA, CIC), and Japan (CIB). In 2013, I was selected as one of only 40 participants (270 applicants worldwide) at the Training Institute for Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health (National Institutes of Health, St Louis USA) in 2013. This 5-day training institute provides access to international leaders in implementation and dissemination research in health, opportunities to create partnerships and international collaborations, and enhances skills and knowledge in research design, methods and analyses appropriate for implementation research.

I have successfully supervised a Psychology Honours student (University of Calgary, 2011) and am currently co-supervising two doctoral candidates. I review approximately 4 to 5 manuscripts per year for international journals such as Psycho-oncology, Palliative Medicine, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, Supportive Care Cancer, Cancer.

Languages

  • English

Fields of Research

CodeDescriptionPercentage
111700Public Health And Health Services100

Memberships

Committee/Associations (relevant to research).

  • Member - International Psycho-oncology Society (IPOS)
  • Member - Australian Psycho-oncology Co-operative Research Group (PoCoG)

Appointments

Member
International Scientific Committee, IPOS (Australia)
01/01/2014
Member
Hunter Cancer Research Alliance Implementation Committee (Australia)
01/10/2014

Awards

Other

2011Post-doctoral Trainee Excellence Award
Southern Alberta Cancer Research Institute (Canada)
Trainee Excellence award

Research Award.

2009Student Award
Behavioural Research in Cancer Control Conference (Australia)
Student Award

Collaboration

The focus of my research is end of life care issues and behavioural aspects of chornic disease. Current research collaborations include Cancer Council NSW, Hunter Stroke Service, Prof Neil Rees (University of Sunchine Coast), Prof Ian Olver (Royal Adelaide Hospital), Prof Barry Bultz and Prof Linda Carlson (University of Calgary/Tom Baker Cancer Centre), Prof Daren Heyland and A/Prof John You (CARENET, Canada).

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Publications

For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.

Click on a category title below to expand the list of citations for that specific category.

Chapter (1 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2014Girgis A, Waller AE, 'Palliative Care Needs Assessment Tool', The Oxford Textbook of Palliative Medicine, Oxford University Press, United Kingdom 1-10 (2014)

Journal article (28 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2014Thomas BC, Waller A, Malhi RL, Fung T, Carlson LE, Groff SL, Bultz BD, 'A Longitudinal Analysis of Symptom Clusters in Cancer Patients and Their Sociodemographic Predictors', JOURNAL OF PAIN AND SYMPTOM MANAGEMENT, 47 566-578 (2014) [C1]
2014Boyes AW, Clinton-McHarg T, Waller AE, Steele A, D'Este CA, Sanson-Fisher RW, 'Prevalence and correlates of the unmet supportive care needs of individuals diagnosed with a haematological malignancy.', Acta Oncol, 1-8 (2014)
2014Waller A, Forshaw K, Bryant J, Mair S, 'Interventions for preparing patients for chemotherapy and radiotherapy: A systematic review', Supportive Care in Cancer, 22 2297-2308 (2014)
2014Zucca A, Sanson-Fisher R, Waller A, Carey M, 'Patient-centred care: Making cancer treatment centres accountable', Supportive Care in Cancer, 22 1989-1997 (2014)
2014Waller AE, Collie K, McCormick J, Waller A, Railton C, Short L, et al., 'Qualitative evaluation of care plans for Canadian breast and head-and-neck cancer survivors. Collie, K., McCormick, J., Waller, A. E., Railton, C., Shirt, L., Chobanuk, J., Taylor, A., Lau, H., Hao, D., Walley, B., Kapusta, B., Joy, A.A., Carlson, L.E., Giese-Davis, J.', Current Oncology, 1 (2014)
2013Carlson LE, Waller A, Groff SL, Bultz BD, 'Screening for distress, the sixth vital sign, in lung cancer patients: effects on pain, fatigue, and common problemssecondary outcomes of a randomized controlled trial', PSYCHO-ONCOLOGY, 22 1880-1888 (2013) [C1]
2013Carlson LE, Waller A, Groff SL, Giese-Davis J, Bultz BD, 'What goes up does not always come down: patterns of distress, physical and psychosocial morbidity in people with cancer over a one year period', PSYCHO-ONCOLOGY, 22 168-176 (2013) [C1]
2013Waller A, Girgis A, Davidson PM, Newton PJ, Lecathelinais C, Macdonald PS, et al., 'Facilitating Needs-Based Support and Palliative Care for People With Chronic Heart Failure: Preliminary Evidence for the Acceptability, Inter-Rater Reliability, and Validity of a Needs Assessment Tool', JOURNAL OF PAIN AND SYMPTOM MANAGEMENT, 45 912-925 (2013) [C1]
2013Zucca A, Sanson-Fisher R, Waller A, 'The many faces of preventative care in the practice of oncology', Cancer Forum, 37 12-16 (2013) [C1]
2013Girgis A, Lambert S, Johnson C, Waller A, Currow D, 'Physical, Psychosocial, Relationship, and Economic Burden of Caring for People With Cancer: A Review', Journal of Oncology Practice, 9 197-202 (2013) [C1]
2013Bultz B, Waller AE, Cullum J, Jones P, Halland J, Groff S, et al., 'Implementing routine screening for distress, the sixth vital sign, for patients with head and neck and neurologic cancers.', Journal of the National Comprensive Cancer Network, 11 1249-1261 (2013) [C1]
2013Enns A, Waller A, Groff SL, Bultz BD, Fung T, Carlson LE, 'Risk Factors for Continuous Distress Over a 12-Month Period in Newly Diagnosed Cancer Outpatients', JOURNAL OF PSYCHOSOCIAL ONCOLOGY, 31 489-506 (2013) [C1]
2013Waller A, Williams A, Groff SL, Bultz BD, Carlson LE, 'Screening for distress, the sixth vital sign: examining self-referral in people with cancer over a one-year period', PSYCHO-ONCOLOGY, 22 388-395 (2013) [C1]
2013Carlson LE, Waller A, Groff SL, Zhong L, Bultz BD, 'Reply: benefits of screening cancer patients for distress still not demonstrated', BRITISH JOURNAL OF CANCER, 108 738-739 (2013) [C3]
2013Carlson LE, Waller A, Groff SL, Bultz BD, 'Reply: Comment on 'Online screening for distress, the 6th vital sign, in newly diagnosed oncology outpatients: randomised controlled trial of computerised vs personalised triage' - Psychological distress in patients with cancer: is screening the effective solution?', BRITISH JOURNAL OF CANCER, 108 2631-2632 (2013) [C3]
2012Carlson LE, Waller A, Mitchell AJ, 'Screening for Distress and Unmet Needs in Patients With Cancer: Review and Recommendations', JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY, 30 1160-1177 (2012) [C1]
2012Waller AE, Girgis A, Johnson CE, Lecathelinais LC, Sibbritt DW, Seldon M, et al., 'Implications of a needs assessment intervention for people with progressive cancer: Impact on clinical assessment, response and service utilisation', Psycho-Oncology, 21 550-557 (2012) [C1]
2012Waller A, Groff SL, Hagen N, Bultz BD, Carlson LE, 'Characterizing distress, the 6th vital sign, in an oncology pain clinic', CURRENT ONCOLOGY, 19 E53-E59 (2012) [C1]
2012Waller A, Garland SN, Bultz BD, 'Using Screening for Distress, the Sixth Vital Sign, to advance patient care with assessment and targeted interventions', SUPPORTIVE CARE IN CANCER, 20 2241-2246 (2012) [C1]
2012Giese-Davis J, Waller A, Carlson LE, Groff S, Zhong L, Neri E, et al., 'Screening for distress, the 6th vital sign: common problems in cancer outpatients over one year in usual care: associations with marital status, sex, and age', BMC CANCER, 12 (2012) [C1]
2012Waller AE, Girgis A, Johnson CE, Lecathelinais LC, Sibbritt DW, Forstner D, et al., 'Improving outcomes for people with progressive cancer: Interrupted time series trial of a needs assessment intervention', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 43 569-581 (2012) [C1]
2012Carlson LE, Waller AE, Groff SL, Zhong L, Bultz BD, 'Online screening for distress, the 6th vital sign, in newly diagnosed oncology outpatients: randomised controlled trial of computerised vs personalised triage.', British Journal of Cancer, 107 617-625 (2012) [C1]
2012Mitchell AJ, Waller A, Carlson LE, 'Implementing a screening programme for distress in cancer settings: Science and practice', Psicooncologia, 9 259-275 (2012)
2012Mitchell A, Waller AE, Carlson L, 'Implementing a Screening Programme for Distress in Cancer Settings: Science and Practice.', Psicooncologia, 9 259-275 (2012)
2011Carlson L, Waller AE, Groff S, Bultz B, 'Reply to Palmer et al. Clinical Trial did Demonstrate Benefits for Screening Cancer Patients for Distress.', Journal of Clinical Oncology, 29 279-280 (2011) [C3]
2010Waller AE, Girgis A, Johnson CE, Mitchell G, Yates P, Kristjanson L, et al., 'Facilitating needs based cancer care for people with a chronic disease: Evaluation of an intervention using a multi-centre interrupted time series design', BMC Palliative Care, 9 1-6 (2010) [C1]
2010Waller AE, Girgis A, Lecathelinais LC, Scott W, Foot L, Sibbritt DW, Currow D, 'Validity, reliability and clinical feasibility of a needs assessment tool for people with progressive cancer', Psycho-Oncology, 19 726-733 (2010) [C1]
2008Waller AE, Girgis A, Currow D, Lecathelinais LC, 'Development of the palliative care needs assessment tool (PC-NAT) for use by multi-disciplinary health professionals', Palliative Medicine, 22 956-964 (2008) [C1]
Show 25 more

Conference (8 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2011Waller AE, Girgis A, Davidson P, Newton P, Lecathelinais LC, MacDonald P, et al., 'Facilitating needs based care for people with chronic heart failure: Inter-rater reliability, validity and acceptability of a Needs Assessment Tool', Heart, Lung and Circulation, Perth, WA (2011) [E3]
2010Girgis A, Waller AE, Currow D, 'Facilitating the implementation of the Palliative Care Needs Assessment Tool: Progressive disease - Cancer in clinical practice', Psycho-Oncology, Quebec, Canada (2010) [E3]
2009Waller AE, Girgis A, Lecathelinais LC, Scott W, Foot L, Sibbritt DW, Currow D, 'Validity, reliability and clinical feasibility of a needs assessment tool for people with progressive cancer', Asia-Pacific Journal of Clinical Oncology, Gold Coast, QLD (2009) [E3]
2009Waller AE, Girgis A, Johnson CE, Currow D, Lecathelinais LC, Sibbritt DW, 'Impact of a palliative care needs assessment intervention on patient outcomes and service utilisation', Asia-Pacific Journal of Clinical Oncology, Gold Coast, QLD (2009) [E3]
2009Girgis A, Waller AE, Currow D, 'Systematic assessment of palliative care needs: Efficacy, time and resource implications and future directions', Palliative Care 2009: Combining the 10th APCC & the 8th APHC. Conference Handbook, Perth, WA (2009) [E3]
2009Waller AE, Girgis A, Currow D, Lecathelinais LC, Sibbritt DW, 'Evaluation of a palliative care needs assessment intervention', Supportive Care in Cancer, Rome, Italy (2009) [E3]
2007Waller AE, Girgis A, Currow D, McElduff P, Lecathelinais LC, 'The Palliative Care Needs Assessment Tool (PC-NAT): Development and pilot-testing', Asia-Pacific Journal of Clinical Oncology, Adelaide (2007) [E3]
2006Girgis A, Currow D, Johnson CE, Waller AE, Kristjanson L, 'Overview of a Research Program to Improve Needs Based Palliative Care in Australia', Psycho-Oncology: Journal of the psychological, social and behavioral dimension of cancer, Ferrara-Venice, Italy (2006) [E3]
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Report (2 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2006Girgis A, Waller AE, 'Consultation Skills Module: Breaking Bad News.', National Breast Cancer Centre (2006)
2006Girgis A, Waller AE, 'Consultation Skills Module: Emotional Cues.', National Breast Cancer Centre (2006)

Thesis / Dissertation (1 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2010Waller AE, Facilitating needs-based care of people with progressive cancer: evaluation of a palliative care needs assessment intervention, University of Newcastle (2010) [T3]
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Grants and Funding

Summary

Number of grants7
Total funding$890,280

- Indicates that the researcher may be seeking students for this project.

Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.

2015 (1 grants)

Decision making in older people approaching the end of life$359,753
Funding Body: ARC (Australian Research Council)

Project Team
Doctor Amy Waller
SchemeRole
Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)Chief Investigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$359,75320152017
GNo:G1400472

2014 (2 grants)

End-of-life care: An investigation of advance care planning amongst haematological cancer patients$30,000
Funding Body: Hunter Medical Research Institute

Project Team
Doctor Lisa Mackenzie, Doctor Amy Waller, Laureate Professor Robert Sanson-Fisher, Doctor Mariko Carey
SchemeRole
Project GrantInvestigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$30,00020142014
GNo:G1301373

Develop and evaluate a three-year strategic plan addressing sun exposure, skin cancer prevention and vitamin D$25,000
Funding Body: Cancer Council NSW

Project Team
Laureate Professor Robert Sanson-Fisher, Doctor Jamie Bryant, Doctor Mariko Carey, Doctor Luke Wolfenden, Doctor Amy Waller, Mrs Elizabeth Tracey, Miss Alix Hall
SchemeRole
Research GrantInvestigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$25,00020142015
GNo:G1400744

2013 (1 grants)

Proof of Concept Study Examining the Impact of Introducing the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards from the Perspective of Patients and Healthcare Consumers$108,357
Funding Body: Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care

Project Team
Laureate Professor Robert Sanson-Fisher, Mrs Robyn Considine, Doctor Jamie Bryant, Doctor Amy Waller
SchemeRole
Research GrantInvestigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$108,35720132014
GNo:G1301048

2008 (1 grants)

Needs based access to specialist palliative care services: Development and evaluation of a Consumer Toolkit$286,572
Funding Body: NHMRC (National Health & Medical Research Council)

Project Team
Conjoint Professor Afaf Girgis, Professor David Currow, Dr Claire Johnson, Doctor Amy Waller, Conjoint Professor David Sibbritt
SchemeRole
Palliative Care Research GrantsInvestigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$286,57220082010
GNo:G0186967

2007 (1 grants)

Needs based palliative care: Evaluation of the palliative care needs assessment guidelines and tools$65,598
Funding Body: NHMRC (National Health & Medical Research Council)

Project Team
Doctor Amy Waller, Conjoint Professor Afaf Girgis
SchemeRole
Palliative Care Research GrantsChief Investigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$65,59820072009
GNo:G0187265

2006 (1 grants)

Update National Breast Cancer Centre communication skills training modules$15,000
Funding Body: National Breast Cancer Centre

Project Team
Conjoint Professor Afaf Girgis, Doctor Amy Waller
SchemeRole
Research GrantInvestigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish
$15,00020062006
GNo:G0186835
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Research Supervision

Number of current supervisions2
Total current UoN PhD EFTSL0.65

For supervisions undertaken at an institution other that the University of Newcastle, the institution name is listed below the program name.

Current Supervision

CommencedProposed
Completion
ProgramSupervisor TypeResearch Title
20132017PhD (Behavioural Science)Co-SupervisorAssessing Longitudinal Recovery of Stroke Patients & their Support Persons
20112016PhD (Behavioural Science)Co-SupervisorPatient-Centred Care in Cancer Treatment Centres

Past Supervision

YearProgramSupervisor TypeResearch Title
2012Honours Psychology
University of Calgary
Co-SupervisorRisk factors for distress trajectories over a 12 month period in newly diagnosed cancer outpatients
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Dr Amy Waller

Email
PositionResearch Fellow
School of Medicine and Public Health
Faculty of Health and Medicine
The University of Newcastle, Australia
URL:www.newcastle.edu.au/profile/amy-waller