Kristine Williams , R.N., Ph.D.
Kristine Williams, R.N., Ph.D., Sally Mathis Hartwig Professor in Gerontological Nursing at the University of Iowa College of Nursing. She received a Ph.D. in Gerontology from the University of Kansas in 2001. She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and the National Academies of Practice. Her research linking elderspeak communication to behavior of persons with dementia was highlighted by the Alzheimer’s Association and reported in the national media including Good Morning America, the CBS Evening News, and the New York Times. Dr. Williams’ research tests interventions to improve care for older adults by enhancing nursing communication, providing cognitive training for maintaining self-care, and using technology to support family caregivers of persons with dementia. Her current NIH-funded study uses multidisciplinary strategies to test whether improving nursing home staff communication with residents during routine care can reduce resistiveness to care—a challenge for direct care staff. This study was based on her earlier research that linked “elderspeak” communication to increased resistiveness to care in nursing home residents with dementia. Additional research studies include testing cognitive training based on reasoning skills to improve self-care and aging in place for assisted living residents and bedside video displays to improve person-centered communication in nursing homes. New research focuses on Internet-based video monitoring coupled with multidisciplinary professional review and feedback to support family members caring for persons with dementia at home.
Keywords: Dementia, behaviors, communication, cognition, caregiver