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As a high school student, Elizabeth Galik, PhD’ 07, CRNP, associate professor, began volunteering at Northwest Hospital. She witnessed nurses caring for patients and working with families to help their loved ones overcome health-related obstacles. After being immersed in this type of atmosphere, Galik knew she wanted to become a nurse.
Today, Galik, who has been with the School of Nursing since 2006, serves as a researcher, clinician, and educator. Her research tests the impact of interventions designed to optimize function, physical activity, mood, and behavior of long-term care residents with moderate to severe cognitive impairment. The Function and Behavior Focused Care approach is geared toward changing how long-term care staff provides care to residents with dementia by teaching them how to evaluate and optimize the residents' underlying physical capabilities. Additionally, this approach trains staff how to safely and effectively engage residents in personal care and physical activity.
Early in her nursing career, Galik spent a lot of time working with older adults, which prepared her for the gerontology and geriatrics specialty. She chose to work for the School because she felt that it was one of the few research intensive schools of nursing that actually had a model for faculty to continue with their clinical practice as part of their career.