The WVU School of Nursing welcomes a well-known, respected researcher and nursing leader to present the Judy C. Kandzari Memorial Lectureship on Friday, April 15, 2016, in Fukushima Auditorium at the WVU Health Sciences Center, beginning at 7 p.m. The School will also honor academic achievements of student scholars, as well as recognize students, faculty and community leaders with induction into Sigma Theta Tau International – Alpha Rho Chapter nursing honorary immediately following the lecture. 

Elizabeth Merwin, PhD, RN, FAAN, the Ann Henshaw Gardiner Distinguished Professor and Executive Vice Dean at the Duke University School of Nursing, will present the lecture titled, “Serving the Rural Underserved in Changing Times.”  

“Increased recognition by the public and by healthcare stakeholders of the importance of the population health focus paves the way for nurses to shape the rural health care system of the future," said Dr. Merwin. "Nurses will have more freedom to use all of their knowledge, clinical experiences and insights to better meet the needs of patients and communities, to increase access to care and to improve health outcomes. Increasing the use of nursing research to evaluate the impact of changes on patient outcomes will provide information necessary to influence resource allocation.” 

Dr. Merwin has spent much of her career focusing on improving care for underserved rural populations. She has conducted a NIH funded R01 study on the Shortages of Health Professionals and was PI of the Rural Health Care Research Center at UVA, a  P20 center funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research. In 2008, she served as volume editor for the Annual Review of Nursing Research: Focus on Rural Health and is President of the Rural Nurses Organization. In her role as Executive Vice Dean, Dr. Merwin provides senior leadership for the school where she also teaches Effective Leadership in the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program and Mixed Methods in the PhD program. She previously served as associate dean for research at the University of Virginia School of Nursing.  

Dr. Merwin is a methodological expert on BIG DATA, and has taught graduate courses on Secondary Data Analysis in medicine and nursing for more than 25 years. She is a standing study section committee member for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s (AHRQ) and a reviewer for the National Institute of Health and for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). In 2008 she received the Distinguished Professor Award from the School of Nursing at the University of Virginia, and received the Outstanding Alumni Award from the School of Nursing at Radford University in 2013. She taught the course, “Health Services Research,” as a visiting professor at The University of Hong Kong, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, Department of Nursing Studies in 2011, 2013 and 2015.

The Kandzari lecture is held every other year and features a national leader in rural health nursing issues. The event honors the late Judy C. Kandzari, a School of Nursing faculty member whose dedication to nursing education in rural areas was well-known throughout the state. Dr. Kandzari was a community health nurse and the School of Nursing’s first director of distance education.

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For more information: Contact: Tara Curtis, WVU School of Nursing, 304-581-1772