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Maija Reblin, PhD

Academic Rank: Assistant Member



    • Supportive Care Medicine
    • Health Outcomes and Behavior
    • Neuro-Oncology
    • Health Outcomes & Behavior Program

Education & Training


  • University of Utah, PhD - Social and Health Psychology
  • University of Utah, MA - Social and Health psychology

Cancer impacts not only those who are diagnosed, but also family members—often spouses/partners--who act as caregivers. Often the impact of cancer on family caregivers is overlooked. Though some may benefit from providing care, taking on a caregiving role can negatively impact psychological and physical health. Therefore, there is a critical need for research to better understand the cancer caregiver experience and improve outcomes for caregivers of advanced cancer patients. Dr. Reblin’s research focuses on how the social context, including interpersonal communication, impacts the psychological and physical health of cancer family caregivers. Dr. Reblin has successfully obtained grants from both the National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society to support her interdisciplinary research program, including an American Cancer Society Palliative Care Mentored Research Scholar Award. Several recently-completed projects were focused on advanced cancer family caregivers’ interactions with home hospice nurses, and these led to a new project focused on caregiver interactions with hospice interdisciplinary care teams. Dr. Reblin also studies interactions outside the clinic; For example, one study focuses on how interactions between caregivers and patients at home impact caregiver health and well-being. Building on this observational work, Dr. Reblin is currently working to develop interventions leveraging existing caregiver strengths and resources to improve the caregiving experience.


  • Oliver DP, Tappana J, Washington KT, Rolbiecki A, Craig K, Demiris G, Schafer C, Winjobi M, Clayton MF, Reblin M, Ellington L. Behind the doors of home hospice patients: A secondary qualitative analysis of hospice nurse communication with patients and families. Palliat Support Care. 2019 Mar;1-5. Pubmedid: 30841945.
  • Kasting ML, Conley CC, Hoogland AI, Scherr CL, Kim J, Thapa R, Reblin M, Meade CD, Lee MC, Pal T, Quinn GP, Vadaparampil ST. A Randomized Controlled Intervention to Promote Readiness to Genetic Counseling for Breast Cancer Survivors. Psychooncology. 2019 Mar. Pubmedid: 30883986.
  • Reblin M, Baucom BRW, Clayton MF, Utz R, Caserta M, Lund D, Mooney K, Ellington L. Communication of emotion in home hospice cancer care: Implications for spouse caregiver depression into bereavement. Psychooncology. 2019 Mar. Pubmedid: 30883985.
  • Reblin M, Kasting ML, Nam K, Scherr CL, Kim J, Thapa R, Meade CD, Lee MC, Pal T, Quinn GP, Vadaparampil ST. Health beliefs associated with readiness for genetic counseling among high risk breast cancer survivors. Breast J. 2019 Jan;25(1):117-123. Pubmedid: 30488655.
  • Reblin M, Ketcher D, Forsyth P, Mendivil E, Kane L, Pok J, Meyer M, Wu YP, Agutter J. Outcomes of an electronic social network intervention with neuro-oncology patient family caregivers. J Neurooncol. 2018 Sep;139(3):643-649. Pubmedid: 29808340. Pmcid: PMC6126960.
  • Reblin M, Sutton SK, Vadaparampil ST, Heyman RE, Ellington L. Behind closed doors: How advanced cancer couples communicate at home. J Psychosoc Oncol. 2018 Oct;1-14. Pubmedid: 30372376.
  • Vinci C, Reblin M, Jim H, Pidala J, Bulls H, Cutolo E. Understanding preferences for a mindfulness-based stress management program among caregivers of hematopoietic cell transplant patients. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2018 Nov;33:164-169. Pubmedid: 30396616.
  • Ellington L, Clayton MF, Reblin M, Donaldson G, Latimer S. Communication among cancer patients, caregivers, and hospice nurses: Content, process and change over time. Patient Educ Couns. 2018 May;101(3):414-421. Pubmedid: 28964559. Pmcid: PMC5857410.
  • Han CJ, Chi NC, Han S, Demiris G, Oliver DP, Washington K, Clayton MF, Reblin M, Ellington L. Communicating Caregivers' Challenges With Cancer Pain Management: An Analysis of Home Hospice Visits. J Pain Symptom Manag. 2018 May;55(5):1296-1303. Pubmedid: 29360571. Pmcid: PMC5899943.
  • Hudson J, Reblin M, Clayton MF, Ellington L. Addressing cancer patient and caregiver role transitions during home hospice nursing care. Palliat Support Care. 2018 May;1-8. Pubmedid: 29761752. Pmcid: PMC6237667.
  • Reblin M, Heyman RE, Ellington L, Baucom BRW, Georgiou PG, Vadaparampil ST. Everyday couples' communication research: Overcoming methodological barriers with technology. Patient Educ Couns. 2018 Mar;101(3):551-556. Pubmedid: 29111310.
  • Oliver DP, Washington K, Demiris G, Wallace A, Propst MR, Uraizee AM, Craig K, Clayton MF, Reblin M, Ellington L. Shared Decision Making in Home Hospice Nursing Visits: A Qualitative Study. J Pain Symptom Manag. 2018 Mar;55(3):922-929. Pubmedid: 29128433. Pmcid: PMC6335643.
  • Reblin M, Birmingham WC, Kohlmann W, Graff T. Support and negation of colorectal cancer risk prevention behaviors: analysis of spousal discussions. Psychol Health Med. 2018 Jun;23(5):548-554. Pubmedid: 28984149.
  • Reblin M, Small B, Jim H, Weimer J, Sherwood P. Mediating burden and stress over time: Caregivers of patients with primary brain tumor. Psychooncology. 2018 Feb;27(2):607-612. Pubmedid: 28801927.
  • Lai D, Cloyes KG, Clayton MF, Doyon K, Reblin M, Beck AC, Ellington L. WE'RE THE EYES AND THE EARS, BUT WE DON'T HAVE A VOICE: PERSPECTIVES OF HOSPICE AIDES. J Hosp Palliat Nurs. 2018 Feb;20(1):47-54. Pubmedid: 29403331. Pmcid: PMC5795615.
  • Reblin M, Ketcher D, Forsyth P, Mendivil E, Kane L, Pok J, Meyer M, Wu YP, Agutter J. Feasibility of implementing an electronic social support and resource visualization tool for caregivers in a neuro-oncology clinic. Support Care Cancer. 2018 Dec;26(12):4199-4206. Pubmedid: 29948397. Pmcid: PMC6204082.
  • Xu J, Yang R, Wilson A, Reblin M, Clayton MF, Ellington L. Using Social Network Analysis to Investigate Positive EOL Communication. J Pain Symptom Manag. 2018 Aug;56(2):273-280. Pubmedid: 29723565. Pmcid: PMC6086370.
  • Stanley NB, Quinn G, Reed D, Galligan A, Reblin M. Support for Young Adult Cancer Patients: Perspectives of Patients and their Mothers. J Cancer Educ. 2018 Aug. Pubmedid: 30083846.
  • Terrill AL, Ellington L, John KK, Latimer S, Xu J, Reblin M, Clayton MF. Positive emotion communication: Fostering well-being at end of life. Patient Educ Couns. 2018 Apr;101(4):631-638. Pubmedid: 29241975. Pmcid: PMC5878994.
  • Ellington L, Cloyes KG, Xu J, Bellury L, Berry PH, Reblin M, Clayton MF. Supporting home hospice family caregivers: Insights from different perspectives. Palliat Support Care. 2018 04;16(2):209-219. Pubmedid: 28464961. Pmcid: PMC5670030.
  • Terrill AL, Reblin M, MacKenzie JJ, Cardell B, Einerson J, Berg CA, Majersik JJ, Richards L. Development of a novel positive psychology-based intervention for couples post-stroke. Rehabil Psychol. 2018 02;63(1):43-54. Pubmedid: 29553781. Pmcid: PMC5862074.
  • Clayton MF, Hulett J, Kaur K, Reblin M, Wilson A, Ellington L. Nursing Support of Home Hospice Caregivers on the Day of Patient Death. Oncol Nurs Forum. 2017 Jul;44(4):457-464. Pubmedid: 28632241. Pmcid: PMC5480962.
  • Reblin M, Clayton M, Xu J, Hulett J, Latimer S, Donaldson G, Ellington L. Caregiver, patient, and nurse visit communication patterns in cancer home hospice. Psychooncology. 2017 Dec;26(12):2285-2293. Pubmedid: 28029712. Pmcid: PMC5489378.
  • Ellington L, Billitteri J, Reblin M, Clayton MF. Spiritual Care Communication in Cancer Patients. Semin Oncol Nurs. 2017 Dec;33(5):517-525. Pubmedid: 29107530.
  • Reblin M, Wu YP, Pok J, Kane L, Colman H, Cohen AL, Mendivil E, Warner EL, Meyer M, Agutter J. Development of the Electronic Social Network Assessment Program Using the Center for eHealth and Wellbeing Research Roadmap. JMIR Hum Factors. 2017 Aug;4(3):e23. Pubmedid: 28855149. Pmcid: PMC5597796.
  • Ellington L, Clayton MF, Reblin M, Cloyes K, Beck AC, Harrold JK, Harris P, Casarett D. Interdisciplinary Team Care and Hospice Team Provider Visit Patterns during the Last Week of Life. J Palliat Med. 2016 May;19(5):482-487. Pubmedid: 27104950.
  • Reblin M, Clayton MF, John KK, Ellington L. Addressing Methodological Challenges in Large Communication Data Sets: Collecting and Coding Longitudinal Interactions in Home Hospice Cancer Care. Health Commun. 2016 Jul;31(7):789-797. Pubmedid: 26580414. Pmcid: PMC4853241.
  • Reblin M, Cloyes KG, Carpenter J, Berry PH, Clayton MF, Ellington L. Social support needs: discordance between home hospice nurses and former family caregivers. Palliat Support Care. 2015 Jun;13(3):465-472. Pubmedid: 24528800. Pmcid: PMC4838180.
  • Tabler J, Utz RL, Ellington L, Reblin M, Caserta M, Clayton M, Lund D. Missed Opportunity: Hospice Care and the Family. J Soc Work End Life Palliat Care. 2015;11(3-4):224-243. Pubmedid: 26654059. Pmcid: PMC4741375.
  • Tjia J, Talebreza S, Reblin M, Beck A, Ellington L. Scramble or script: responding to new Medicare billing for medications in hospice. J Palliat Med. 2014 Oct;17(10):1085-1086. Pubmedid: 25259551. Pmcid: PMC4519054.
  • Clayton MF, Reblin M, Carlisle M, Ellington L. Communication behaviors and patient and caregiver emotional concerns: a description of home hospice communication. Oncol Nurs Forum. 2014 May;41(3):311-321. Pubmedid: 24769595.
  • Reblin M, Otis-Green S, Ellington L, Clayton MF. Strategies to support spirituality in health care communication: a home hospice cancer caregiver case study. J Holist Nurs. 2014 Dec;32(4):269-277. Pubmedid: 24771665.
  • Ellington L, Cloyes K, Berry P, Thomas NT, Reblin M, Clayton MF. Complexities for hospice nurses in supporting family caregivers: opinions from U.S. thought leaders. J Palliat Med. 2013 Sep;16(9):1013-1019. Pubmedid: 23837448.
  • Smith TW, Uchino BN, MacKenzie J, Hicks AM, Campo RA, Reblin M, Grewen KM, Amico JA, Light KC. Effects of couple interactions and relationship quality on plasma oxytocin and cardiovascular reactivity: empirical findings and methodological considerations. Int J Psychophysiol. 2013 Jun;88(3):271-281. Pubmedid: 22543270. Pmcid: PMC5045263.
  • Ellington L, Reblin M, Berry P, Giese-Davis J, Clayton MF. Reflective research: supporting researchers engaged in analyzing end-of-life communication. Patient Educ Couns. 2013 Apr;91(1):126-128. Pubmedid: 23092615.
  • Ellington L, Reblin M, Clayton MF, Berry P, Mooney K. Hospice nurse communication with patients with cancer and their family caregivers. J Palliat Med. 2012 Mar;15(3):262-268. Pubmedid: 22339285. Pmcid: PMC3295856.
  • Ellington L, Kelly KM, Reblin M, Latimer S, Roter D. Communication in genetic counseling: cognitive and emotional processing. Health Commun. 2011 Oct;26(7):667-675. Pubmedid: 21660793.
  • Romesser J, Shen S, Reblin M, Kircher J, Allen S, Roberts T, Marchand WR. A preliminary study of the effect of a diagnosis of concussion on PTSD symptoms and other psychiatric variables at the time of treatment seeking among veterans. Mil Med. 2011 Mar;176(3):246-252. Pubmedid: 21456348.
  • Ellington L, Rebecca Poynton M, Reblin M, Latimer S, Bennett HK, Crouch B, Caravati EM. Communication patterns for the most serious poison center calls. Clin Toxicol (Phila). 2011 Apr;49(4):316-323. Pubmedid: 21563908. Pmcid: PMC3167491.
  • Reblin M, Uchino BN, Smith TW. Provider and recipient factors that may moderate the effectiveness of received support: examining the effects of relationship quality and expectations for support on behavioral and cardiovascular reactions. J Behav Med. 2010 Dec;33(6):423-431. Pubmedid: 20568004.
  • Reblin M, Uchino BN. Social and emotional support and its implication for health. Curr Opin Psychiatry. 2008 Mar;21(2):201-205. Pubmedid: 18332671. Pmcid: PMC2729718.
  • Dingley CE, Clayton M, Lai D, Doyon K, Reblin M, Ellington L. Caregiver Activation and Home Hospice Nurse Communication in Advanced Cancer Care. Cancer Nurs. 40(5):E38-E50. Pubmedid: 27631112. Pmcid: PMC5830116.