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Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System (2020)

Chapter: Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies

« Previous: Appendix A: Public Meeting Agendas
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
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B

Committee and Staff Biographies

Dan G. Blazer II, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D. (Chair), is the J.P. Gibbons Professor of Psychiatry Emeritus and a professor of community and family medicine at Duke University as well as an adjunct professor in the Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina. He is the author or coauthor of more than 180 book chapters, more than 220 published abstracts, and nearly 500 peer-reviewed articles. He is also the editor or author of 40 books. Many of the book chapters and scientific articles are on the topics of late life depression, epidemiology, consultation liaison psychiatry, the interface between religion and psychiatry, and the epidemiology of substance use disorders. Most of his research projects have focused on the prevalence of physical and mental illness in the elderly. He has served as the principal investigator (PI) of the Duke University Established Populations for Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly, the Piedmont Health Survey of the Elderly, and the MacArthur Field Studies of Successful Aging. He also was the original PI of the Duke Clinical Research Center for Late Life Depression. Dr. Blazer is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine from which he received the Walsh McDermott Award for Distinguished Lifetime Service to the Academy.

Susan Beane, M.D., joined Healthfirst in 2009, bringing with her extensive professional experience in managed care. As the executive medical director at Healthfirst, Dr. Beane focuses on care management and clinical provider partnerships, programs especially designed to improve the delivery of vital, evidence-based health care to members. Dr. Beane, a dedicated primary care physician and board-certified internist, is a strong proponent of collaborating with and engaging providers to improve health outcomes. Dr. Beane leads Healthfirst in collaborating

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

with major health care delivery systems and local and national policy experts on the design, implementation, and dissemination of innovative, outcomes-focused models of care. Her research contributions span the health of caregivers, obesity, and maternal health. Prior to joining Healthfirst, Dr. Beane served as the chief medical officer for Affinity Health Plan for 5 years—during which time she helped Affinity Health Plan become a top performer in quality and member satisfaction. Before that, she worked at AmeriChoice and HIP USA as a medical director. Dr. Beane is a graduate of Princeton University and the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Cynthia M. Boyd, M.D., M.P.H., is a professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in the Department of Medicine, Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology, and is a core faculty member at the Johns Hopkins Center on Aging and Health and the Roger C. Lipitz Center for Integrated Health Care. Dr. Boyd is jointly appointed in the Department of Health Policy and Management and Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is trained in internal medicine, geriatric medicine, and epidemiology. Her work has focused on person- and family-centered care for people with multiple chronic conditions in order to improve health and well-being, and it includes epidemiological research, health services, research, systematic reviews, guidelines, and clinical trials. Dr. Boyd has focused on interventions to improve outcomes for older adults with multiple chronic conditions through community-based and health care interventions.

Linda Burnes Bolton, Dr.P.H., R.N., FAAN, is the senior vice president for nursing and the chief nursing executive at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Her research, teaching, and clinical expertise include nursing and patient care outcomes, improving organization performance, quality care, and cultural diversity within the health professions. Dr. Burnes Bolton is a past president of the American Organization of Nurse Executives, the American Academy of Nursing, and the National Black Nurses Association. She has provided leadership for several state and national programs, including service as chair of the national advisory committee of Transforming Care at the Bedside, Veterans Affairs Commission on Nursing, and the vice chair of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Initiative on the Future of Nursing at the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Burnes Bolton earned her bachelor of science degree in nursing from Arizona State University. She completed her master of science degree in nursing, master’s in public health, and doctorate in public health at the University of California, Los Angeles.

George Demiris, Ph.D., FACMI, is a PIK (Penn Integrates Knowledge) University Professor at the University of Pennsylvania with joint appointments in the School of Nursing and the Perelman School of Medicine. He focuses his research on the use of information technology to support older adults and their family caregivers

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

and to explore innovative solutions to promote independent aging and patient and family engagement. One area of his research includes the use of behavioral sensing, “smart home,” and “Internet of Things” technologies to promote independence for community-dwelling older adults and their families. Such emerging technologies introduce challenges and opportunities in terms of engaging older adults in decision making, making sense of vast amounts of data, and promoting effective data visualizations as well as addressing ethical considerations. Dr. Demiris is also an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine.

Nancy J. Donovan, M.D., is the director of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and an associate researcher at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is an investigator in observational neuroimaging studies of aging at Massachusetts General Hospital and in clinical trials research at the Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment. Dr. Donovan’s research examines late life neuropsychiatric symptoms and their underlying biological substrates, including the association between a number of emotional and behavioral symptoms (such as loneliness) and preclinical Alzheimer’s disease. In her clinical work, she provides care for older adults with psychiatric and cognitive disorders. She received her medical degree from the Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and completed psychiatric residency training at the Stanford University Medical Center. She is an assistant professor of psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School.

Robert Espinoza, M.P.A., is the vice president of policy at PHI, an organization focused on the direct care workforce, where he oversees its national policy advocacy, research, and strategic communications division. For more than 20 years Mr. Espinoza has spearheaded high-profile advocacy campaigns and written landmark reports on aging and long-term care; lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights; racial justice; and immigration, among other topics. Prior to PHI, he served as the senior director for public policy and communications at SAGE, the country’s premier organization for LGBT older adults. In 2010 he co-founded the Diverse Elders Coalition, a historic federal coalition focused on improving aging supports for communities of color and LGBT communities. Mr. Espinoza received his M.P.A., with honors, from New York University, and his B.A. in English and B.S. in journalism from the University of Colorado Boulder.

Colleen Galambos, Ph.D., ACSW, LCSW, LCSW-C, FGSA, is the Helen Bader Endowed Chair in Applied Gerontology at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee and an adjunct professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin. She is a center scientist with the Center for Aging and Translational Research, Center for Urban Population Health, and a member of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute of Southeast Wisconsin. She currently serves as the secretary general of the North American Chapter of the International Society of Gerontechnology

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

and is past chair of the National Association of Social Workers Aging Practice Section. Dr. Galambos’s practice experience includes clinical, administrative, policy, and research positions in a variety of health and long-term care organizations. She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and a National Association of Social Workers Pioneer. She is the author of 3 books and more than 140 peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Galambos’s research interests include care transitions and advance care planning, aging in place, abuse in later life, health and long-term care, systems quality improvement, gerontechnology, and interprofessional practice.

Julianne Holt-Lunstad, Ph.D., is a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Brigham Young University. She focuses her research on the long-term health effects of social connection. Her work has been seminal in the recognition of social isolation and loneliness as risk factors for early mortality. Dr. Holt-Lunstad has worked with government organizations aimed at addressing this issue. She has provided expert testimony in a U.S. congressional hearing, provided expert recommendations for the U.S. Surgeon General Emotional Well-Being in America Initiative, and is currently a member of the technical working group for the UK Cross Departmental Loneliness Team. She also serves as a scientific advisor for the Australian Coalition to End Loneliness, the Foundation for Art & Healing, and research advisory panel for AARP Services, Inc., United Healthcare, and Rural Aging.

James S. House, Ph.D., is the Angus Campbell Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of Survey Research, Public Policy, and Sociology at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research and an elected member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Sciences. He received his B.A. in history (minor in psychology) from Haverford College and his Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Michigan. His research career has focused on the role of social and psychological factors in the etiology and course of health and illness, initially on occupational stress and health, then social relationships and support in relation to health, and currently on the role of psychosocial factors in understanding and alleviating social disparities in health and the way health changes with age. Professor House has been the founding principal investigator or co-principal investigator of the Americans’ Changing Lives study, the Changing Lives of Older Couples study, and the Chicago Community Adult Health Study.

Kathleen McGarry, Ph.D., is a professor of economics at the University of California, Los Angeles, and a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. She was previously a professor of economics at Dartmouth College and served as a senior economist at the White House Council of Economic Advisers. Dr. McGarry’s research focuses on the well-being of the elderly

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

with particular attention paid to public and private transfers, including the Medicare and Supplemental Security Income programs, and the transfer of resources within families. Her research combines work on the financial aspects of aging with issues related to health economics to examine insurance coverage among the elderly. Dr. McGarry’s current work analyzes the importance of end-of-life medical expenses, particularly expenses associated with nursing homes and home health care, and the effect of caregiving on the well-being of family care providers. She is a co-investigator for the Health and Retirement Study.

Jeanne Miranda, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). She is a mental health services researcher who has focused her work on providing mental health care to low-income and minority communities. She holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from University of Kansas and completed postdoctoral training at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Miranda’s major research contributions have been in evaluating the impact of mental health care for ethnic minority communities. She is an investigator in two UCLA centers focusing on improving disparities in health care for ethnic minorities. She was the senior scientific editor of Mental Health: Culture, Race and Ethnicity, a Supplement to Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General (2001). She became a member of the National Academy of Medicine in 2005 and was the 2008 recipient of the Emily Mumford Award for Contributions to Social Medicine from Columbia University.

Laurie Lovett Novak, Ph.D., M.H.S.A., is an assistant professor of biomedical informatics at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center. In the Department of Biomedical Informatics, she serves as the director of the Center of Excellence in Applied Artificial Intelligence. Dr. Novak conducts ethnographic research to advance theory and contribute to the development of technology and social interventions in several domains. These include the everyday management of chronic illness among the elderly and in other populations, the implementation of artificial intelligence into everyday work practices in health care, and the social and ethical dimensions of new forms of population health management. She received a B.A. in finance from Murray State University, an M.H.S.A. in health management and policy from the University of Michigan, and a Ph.D. in medical and organizational anthropology from Wayne State University.

Carla M. Perissinotto, M.D., M.H.S., is an associate professor in the Division of Geriatrics, Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and is board certified in internal medicine, geriatrics, and palliative medicine. Since 2017, she has served as the associate chief for geriatrics clinical programs at UCSF. In this role she oversees and develops new clinical programs serving older adults across care settings. Her main work is in UCSF

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

Care at Home, which provides medical care to home-bound older adults, and in embedded geriatrics consulting practices. From 2008 to 2017, Dr. Perissinotto spent a portion of her clinical time at the Over 60 Health Center, a federally qualified health center, serving adults over age 55 in Alameda County. At Over 60, Dr. Perissinotto directed the educational programs for UCSF learners and focused on practice change by establishing a team-based model for community-based geriatrics seeing adults across a continuum of care. Dr. Perissinotto gained national and international recognition for her research on the effects of loneliness on the health of older adults. Most recently, her research has focused on integration of loneliness assessments in health care, and evaluation and implementation of community-based programs focused on ameliorating loneliness and isolation in adults.

Juliann G. Sebastian, Ph.D., R.N., FAAN, is the dean of the College of Nursing at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and a professor of nursing. Her areas of expertise are the organization of care delivery systems, care for underserved populations, academic nursing practice, nurse-managed health centers, and doctor of nursing practice program curricula. Dr. Sebastian earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing from the University of Kentucky (UK) College of Nursing and a doctorate in business administration from UK’s College of Business and Economics. She served as chair of the board of directors for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (2016–2018) and has served on the boards of directors of several nonprofit organizations. She has presented at numerous national and international conferences and has published numerous papers, book chapters, and abstracts and three books related to community nursing. In 1999 Dr. Sebastian was inducted as a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing.

NATIONAL ACADEMIES OF SCIENCES, ENGINEERING, AND MEDICINE STAFF

Tracy A. Lustig, D.P.M., M.P.H., is a senior program officer in the Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Dr. Lustig was trained in podiatric medicine and surgery and spent several years in private practice. In 1999 she was awarded a congressional fellowship with the American Association for the Advancement of Science and spent 1 year working in the office of Ron Wyden of the U.S. Senate. Dr. Lustig joined the National Academies in 2004. Much of her work has focused on the health care workforce and the aging of the U.S. population. She was the study director for consensus studies on the geriatrics workforce, oral health, and ovarian cancer research. She also directed workshops on the oral health workforce, the allied health workforce, telehealth, assistive technologies, home health care, hearing loss, and stereotypes in aging and disability. In 2009 she staffed a National Academies–wide initiative

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

on the Grand Challenges of an Aging Society and subsequently helped to launch the Forum on Aging, Disability, and Independence, which she currently directs. Dr. Lustig has a doctor of podiatric medicine degree from Temple University and a master of public health degree with a concentration in health policy from The George Washington University.

Jennifer A. Cohen, M.P.H., is a program officer in the Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies. She received her undergraduate degree and her M.P.H. from the University of Maryland, College Park. She has worked on a number of projects at the National Academies, including Organ Procurement and Transplantation, Clearing the Air: Asthma and Indoor Air Exposures, Veterans and Agent Orange: Update 2000 . . . Update 2014, Post-Vietnam Exposure in Agent Orange-Contaminated C-123 Aircraft, The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids, and Getting to Zero Alcohol-Impaired Driving Fatalities. She was also the rapporteur for the workshop summary Challenges and Successes in Reducing Health Disparities.

Caroline M. Cilio, M.B.E., until October 2019, was an associate program officer in the Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies. Ms. Cilio joined the National Academies in 2016 and worked on the Forum on Aging, Disability, and Independence; a consensus study on returning individual research results to participants; a workshop on physician-assisted death; and the Forum on Medical and Public Health Preparedness for Disasters and Emergencies. Ms. Cilio holds a master of bioethics degree and a B.A. in health and societies, an interdisciplinary study focused on medical sociology and health policy, from the University of Pennsylvania.

Kendall Logan, is a senior program assistant in the Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies. She received her bachelor of arts in anthropology with a public health minor from Haverford College. Ms. Logan joined the National Academies in 2018 and has also worked on the standing committee on Medical and Epidemiological Aspects of Air Pollution on U.S. Government Employees and Their Families and the consensus study on temporomandibular disorders.

Andrew M. Pope, Ph.D., is the director of the Board on Health Sciences Policy. He has a Ph.D. in physiology and biochemistry from the University of Maryland and has been a member of the National Academies staff since 1982 and of the Health and Medicine Division staff since 1989. His primary interests are science policy, biomedical ethics, and environmental and occupational influences on human health. During his tenure at the National Academies, Dr. Pope has directed numerous studies on topics that range from injury control, disability prevention, and biologic markers to the protection of human subjects of research, National Institutes of Health priority-setting processes, organ procurement and

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×

transplantation policy, and the role of science and technology in countering terrorism. Since 1998 Dr. Pope has served as the director of the Board on Health Sciences Policy, which oversees and guides a program of activities that is intended to encourage and sustain the continuous vigor of the basic biomedical and clinical research enterprises needed to ensure and improve the health and resilience of the public. Ongoing activities include forums on neuroscience, genomics, drug discovery and development, and medical and public health preparedness for catastrophic events. Dr. Pope is the recipient of the Health and Medicine Division’s Cecil Award and the National Academy of Sciences’ President’s Special Achievement Award.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
Page 292
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
Page 293
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
Page 294
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
Page 295
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
Page 296
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
Page 297
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Committee and Staff Biographies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults: Opportunities for the Health Care System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25663.
×
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Social isolation and loneliness are serious yet underappreciated public health risks that affect a significant portion of the older adult population. Approximately one-quarter of community-dwelling Americans aged 65 and older are considered to be socially isolated, and a significant proportion of adults in the United States report feeling lonely. People who are 50 years of age or older are more likely to experience many of the risk factors that can cause or exacerbate social isolation or loneliness, such as living alone, the loss of family or friends, chronic illness, and sensory impairments. Over a life course, social isolation and loneliness may be episodic or chronic, depending upon an individual’s circumstances and perceptions.

A substantial body of evidence demonstrates that social isolation presents a major risk for premature mortality, comparable to other risk factors such as high blood pressure, smoking, or obesity. As older adults are particularly high-volume and high-frequency users of the health care system, there is an opportunity for health care professionals to identify, prevent, and mitigate the adverse health impacts of social isolation and loneliness in older adults.

Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults summarizes the evidence base and explores how social isolation and loneliness affect health and quality of life in adults aged 50 and older, particularly among low income, underserved, and vulnerable populations. This report makes recommendations specifically for clinical settings of health care to identify those who suffer the resultant negative health impacts of social isolation and loneliness and target interventions to improve their social conditions. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults considers clinical tools and methodologies, better education and training for the health care workforce, and dissemination and implementation that will be important for translating research into practice, especially as the evidence base for effective interventions continues to flourish.

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