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Focus Areas in Action

Many researchers in the College of Nursing engage in Team Science with interdisciplinary collaborators across campus and with non-UT affiliated partners. In fact, many researchers work with clinicians and researchers from primary and acute care facilities and non-healthcare agencies such the Y-12 National Complex.


Aging and Caregiving Research Group

The newly formed Gerontology Research Group within the University of Tennessee College of Nursing is intended to support the mutual research goals of its members of enhancing the health and wellbeing of older adults and their families. Founding members of the Gerontology Research Group include Karen M. Rose, PhD, RN, FGSA, FAAN; Joel G. Anderson, PhD, CHTP; Susan McLennon, PhD, ANP-BC; and Sandra J. Mixer, PhD, RN, CTN-A. Each has specific expertise and research interests related to gerontology and care of older adults, as outlined below. Each of the founding members of the Gerontology Research Group is an active member of professional organizations, including the Gerontological Society of America, the International Dementia Scholars Collaborative, the International Family Nursing Association, and the Hospice and Palliative Care Nurses Association, presenting papers at national and international conferences annually. Additionally, Drs. Rose, Anderson, McLennon, and Mixer publish manuscripts annually in peer-reviewed journals, with over 140 peer-reviewed articles in press.

Most recently, the Gerontology Research Group submitted a successful application for the College of Nursing to join the National Hartford Center for Gerontological Nursing Excellence (NHCGNE). The NHCGNE has long-standing mission to strengthen nursing excellence in gerontology through international collaboration, education, and research. As a member of the NHCGNE, faculty within the College of Nursing have access to national and international thought-leaders and researchers to improve the quality of care for older adults.

HITS model of focus areas in action

The Health Innovation Technology and Simulation Lab (HITS), co-directed by Drs. Xueping Li and Tami Wyatt is shaping the future of healthcare through its unique, immersive environment and research and development. An original partnership between the University’s College of Nursing and Tickle College of Engineering, the lab was founded seven years ago to advance the science of health innovation while improving healthcare and healthcare professional training. The HITS collaborators include engineers, nurses, graphic designers, and social workers specializing in healthcare, informatics, instructional technology, simulation, mHealth, and big data science. The HITS lab is growing and expanding to include more partners and collaborators and innovative programs with other agencies.

Learn more about the HITS lab

Asthma Research Group model of focus areas in action

The UT Consortium for Family Health is an alliance of UT professors, students, and related faculty who actively work to improve family health. Ultimately, our goal is to create a UT/Community partnership that will positively impact families throughout East Tennessee, which in turn will create stronger and healthier communities. The Consortium will address family functioning, as well as family members’ physical, cognitive, emotional, and psychological health. We view the family as embedded in the context of the socioecological model of health, recognizing that families are made up of individuals, and in turn, families make up communities. Project outcomes will include promoting healthy behaviors (e.g., eating and exercise), decreasing risky behaviors (alcohol abuse, smoking, risky driving), improving parenting, increasing family stability, and decreasing physical and psychological aggression. Its central focus is family functioning and its role in promoting family members’ health across the lifespan.  The Consortium will facilitate multidisciplinary collaborations across multiple departments, colleges, and schools targeting community family health needs.  Consortium faculty will partner with community agencies, community volunteer groups, and ecclesiastical organizations to reach families and to assess community priorities and needs.

Kristina Coop Gordon, Ph.D.
Professor and Director of Clinical Training
Department of Psychology
310B Austin Peay
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-0900
kgordon1@utk.edu
865-974-3347

Asthma Research Group model of focus areas in action

Asthma community of scholars work with researchers and clinicians across the state to improve the health and well-being of those with asthma.  Self-management of asthma is a complex process requiring ongoing management, expert knowledge about one’s own triggers and respiratory status, and treatment regimen. 

For additional information, contact Tami Wyatt at twyatt@utk.edu.

 

 

 

 

 

The social workers and nurse practitioners at Vine School Health Center are working together to investigate adverse childhood experiences (ACE) in the pediatric population of that school-based health center. Much is known about ACEs in the adult population, but research is just beginning on the real-time effects these events have on the health, growth, and development of children. Drs. Tami Bland and Nan Gaylord from the College of Nursing are working with social workers Corey Snyder and Rachel Ross to evaluate the data collected from the patients of the health center. Long-term goals include developing appropriate interventions for healing and protecting children from these traumatic experiences.

Vine School Health Center website

For more information contact Nan Gaylord at ngaylord@utk.edu.

Chronic illness model of focus areas in actionGuided by Intersectionality Theory, the Chronic Illness and Underserved Populations Research Group focuses on the investigation of health and psychosocial outcomes among individuals who are chronically ill and who live in a geographically underserved area. Projects include the investigation of advanced care planning needs among individuals with HIV/AIDS, the use of cancer genetics services among individuals with a higher incidence and mortality of cancer, and the use of technology to facilitate advanced care planning and advanced directives completion for those who have single or multiple chronic conditions.

For more information contact Sadie Hutson at shutson@utk.edu.

Guided by Interprofessional Education (IPE) Competencies and Recovery Principles, the Recovery based Interprofessional Distance Education (RIDE) rotation spent four years developing/delivering online-blended content to prepare graduate students in psychiatric mental health nursing, pharmacy, nutrition and exercise physiology to provide team based care to persons with multiple chronic conditions including mental health disorders.  This project produced the first publications of IPE in graduate mental health nursing and was funded by  HRSA (project number D09HP25932-01-00).

For details about the RIDE rotation including educational materials for faculty and students, publications, presentation and awards, please click here: (https://nursing.utk.edu/recovery-based-interprofessional-distance-education-ride/ )

 

Technology

Guided by the knowledge that the use of technology will increase at the patient bedside, we are engaged in Team Science to develop and study how technology improves patient outcomes. We are investigating the use of personalized communication technology with patients who are communication vulnerable in acute and critical care settings. This work is congruent with the NIH Innovative Question Initiative, specifically Promoting Innovation: Technology to Improve Health.

For more information contact Rebecca Koszalinski at rkoszali@utk.edu.


UTK Team Science Opportunities

The Communities of Scholars (CoS) Program was launched by the office of Research and Engagement (ORE) as a way to encourage the growth of research affinity groups that cross disciplinary boundaries. Each CoS is composed of UT researchers from multiple departments, colleges, and/or units, united by a shared research theme or topic area, and organized to share research capabilities, assess collective research strengths, and explore opportunities for collaboration. Objectives of CoSs may include identifying funding opportunities relevant to the CoS and to move toward designation as an Organized Research Unit (ORU).

For more information about the Communities of Scholars Program, contact Diana Moyer at dmoyer@utk.edu.

Learn about other partnerships across campus

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