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Kolanowski Earns GSA’s 2012 Doris Schwartz Gerontological Nursing Research Award

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For Immediate Release
August 13, 2012

Contact: Todd Kluss
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(202) 587-2839

Kolanowski Earns GSA’s 2012 Doris Schwartz Gerontological Nursing Research Award

The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) — the nation’s largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging — has chosen Ann Kolanowski, PhD, RN, FAAN, of The Pennsylvania State University as the 2012 recipient of the Doris Schwartz Gerontological Nursing Research Award.

This distinguished honor, presented by GSA’s Health Sciences Section in collaboration with the John A. Hartford Foundation’s Institute for Geriatric Nursing, is given to a member of the Society in recognition of outstanding and sustained contribution to geriatric nursing research.

The award presentation will take place at GSA’s 65th Annual Scientific Meeting, which will be held from November 14 to 18 in San Diego. This conference is organized to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers, educators, and practitioners who specialize in the study of the aging process. Visit www.geron.org/annualmeeting for further details.

Kolanowski is the Elouise Ross Eberly Professor of Nursing in the School of Nursing at the Pennsylvania State University, where she is also a professor of psychiatry in the College of Medicine and director of the  Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence. She additionally is an adjunct professor in the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania.

Over the course of her career, Kolanowski has been devoted to improving the quality of life of older adults with dementia. She has developed and disseminated research that focuses on building a strong body of scientific evidence that supports the use of theory-based, non-pharmacological interventions for behavioral symptoms in persons with dementia and delirium.

Because of her efforts, those adults experiencing the devastating effects of dementing illnesses now can benefit from innovative approaches to activity treatment that promote personal identity and dignity throughout the progressive spiral of losses associated with these conditions. In turn, these strategies help decrease the distressing behavioral issues faced by informal and formal caregivers.

Kolanowski’s practice initiatives have been incorporated into national practice guidelines for the care of persons with dementia. Most recently, as part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care, she convened a group of academicians, clinicians, and researchers to review current evidence for non-pharmacological interventions in nursing home residents with dementia.

Kolanowski is a GSA fellow, which represents the Society’s highest class of membership.

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The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society — and its 5,400+ members — is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA’s structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society, and an educational branch, the Academy for Gerontology in Higher Education.

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