Clinical Trials Day Countdown: Meet Jessica
As part of our countdown to Clinical Trials Day, we're interviewing some of our clinical team members. Follow along here to meet our team and learn about their experiences within clinical research!
Today we're interviewing Jessica Cisco, LPN, CCRC, Virtual Research Coordinator.
1. When did you begin working in clinical research and expand to where you are today?
I became a nurse in 2003, and I began working in clinical research in 2012 in a small internal medicine clinic. We had two providers, two medical assistants, and one nurse–me. The clinic, partnered with a small local CRO, began clinical trials focusing on hypertension and hypercholesterolemia. I immediately fell in love with research. The meticulous thought process that it required and seeing the results of that research was the most rewarding feeling I found in my nursing career to that point.
After successfully working alongside our CRO for two studies, I decided it was time to learn more. I ordered the material to study and become a Certified Clinical Research Coordinator (CCRC). After passing my CCRC, I began to take a more hands-on role from study start-up to completion. Several years later, I took a position as a Clinical Research Nurse with a start-up company where I could fully utilize my love for critical thinking, oncology, and clinical research all in one.
As a young teen, I knew I wanted to do something that would help, and working in clinical research has brought me to exactly where I wanted to be. After joining the Circuit Clinical family, I have continued my passion for making a difference through clinical research. Over the years, I have had the privilege of being part of many innovative clinical research trials that have helped shape the future of medicine for patients worldwide.
2. What made you want to work in clinical research (and/or healthcare)?
My inspiration for being in healthcare comes from my maternal great-grandmother for two reasons. First, she was a nurse in the town where I was born and raised. Second, as a child, I can remember seeing her very sick and taking breathing treatments multiple times a day because of her asthma and cardiomyopathy and wishing there was something that made it better for good.
In August 1950, when our current hospital system opened, she was one of the 1st nurses employed there. She and those other nurses began a legacy of healthcare treatment provided through the hospital doors, and my first healthcare job was in the same facility. I remember as a child thinking, “I want to do something and be the first like her.” Suppose I have the opportunity to work on a clinical trial for a medicine that is the first of its kind; that will be my first, and this is why I continue to work in research!
3. What is an example of a story/article that inspires you about doing clinical research?
Inspiration for continued work in research is multi-fold for me. Initially, it was a part of my nursing career that challenged my mind while doing good. Later in life, I would find my inspiration for clinical research change.
In 2010, I gave birth to my second child, my daughter. While both of my children were born prematurely at 31 weeks, my daughter was more critical than my son was four years before. In 2015, my daughter stopped breathing; after the medical team worked for two hours to get her stable enough to transport her to a larger, more equipped facility two hours away, her father and I had a conversation about what would have happened if all these medical devices and medications weren’t available. We would have lost our child that day.
My daughter suffered from Febrile Respiratory Failure as a premature baby. On more than one instance, she has stopped breathing while febrile. My daughter and many others would not be here today if it weren’t for clinical research. If one were to sit back and think of all the equipment and medications used today to help those in need, each has undergone clinical trials. And while innovations in medical care have come so far since my great-grandmother walked through the doors of our local hospital in 1950, thinking of where it could be in another 73 years with the thousands of ongoing research studies, this gives me purpose in my work.
To read about 19 of the most incredible medical advancements during the 21st century, click here: https://www.samshockaday.com/blog/12-of-the-biggest-21st-century-medical-advancements