News and events | The Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis

News and events

Sept. 7 — Family Caregiving Institute evaluation work highlighted by national center
The National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP) highlighted the evaluation work led by the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis in a recent report, The RAISE Act State Policy Roadmap for Family Caregivers. The publication provides a roadmap for state officials to better understand the state policy landscape for supporting family caregivers of older adults. In the section, “Using Research, Data and Evidence-Informed Practices to Support Family Caregivers,” the report showcases how California’s Caregiver Resource Centers collect data from caregivers to assess the state’s caregiver services. The Family Caregiving Institute, in partnership with the Family Caregiving Alliance, led the evaluation. According to the report, very few states measure family caregiver outcomes. The California project, along with another in Washington, were highlighted for leading this work. NASHP created the RAISE Act Family Caregiver Resource and Dissemination Center to support the Family Caregiving Advisory Council, which was established by the Recognize, Assist, Include, Support and Engage (RAISE) Family Caregivers Act in 2018.

June 8 — Institute leader kicks off new caregiving webinar series
Heather M. Young, associate director for strategic partnerships for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing and also national program director for the Betty Irene Moore Fellowship for Nurse Leaders and Innovators, was an expert speaker to kick off the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing year-long webinar series exploring innovative solutions to the nation’s caregiving crisis. Young, who is also a professor and dean emerita at the UC Davis School of Nursing, was joined by Susan Reinhard, who leads family caregiving initiatives with AARP, to discuss how to enhance the well-being of caregivers. The session was moderated by Melissa O’Connor, the M. Louise Fitzpatrick Endowed Professor in Community and Home Health Nursing at Villanova University and also an inaugural Betty Irene Moore Fellow. Read and watch more about the webinar event

May 16 — Associate dean serves as a panelist at National Academies caregiving workshop
Janice Bell, the associate dean for research at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, was one of 10 panelists who discussed “Providing Effective Support for Family Caregivers” at a family caregiving workshop in Washington, D.C. May 16-17. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine led the two-day Family Caregiving for People with Cancer and Other Serious Illnesses Workshop. The workshop focused on research gaps and opportunities to improve caregiving, potential policy and practice opportunities, health equity across family caregiving and lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic in the context of caregiving. Janice, a co-founder and faculty member in the Family Caregiving Institute at the School of Nursing, focuses much of her research on advancing system supports for family caregiving. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine provide independent, objective advice to spark progress and advance science for the benefit of society.

April 7, 2022 — Family Caregiving Institute researchers recognized at regional nursing conference
Janice F. Bell and Heather M. Young, researchers with the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, led a series of podium presentations at the Western Institute of Nursing (WIN) 55th Annual Communicating Nursing Research Conference in early April in Portland, Oregon. The two, who lead the institute’s policy evaluation unit, shared new research in the symposium, “Family Caregiving in the Context of Serious Illness: Assessment and Support for an Invisible Workforce.” Joining the discussion are Associate Professor Emeritus Elena Siegel, Associate Professor Mark Fedyk, doctoral alumna and Family Caregiving Institute Faculty Affiliate Robin Whitney, Heather M. Young Postdoctoral Scholars Tina Kilaberia and Orly Tonkikh. Also on the panel are Jennifer Mongoven, institute associate director of operations and current doctoral students Teuta Kadiu, Cherrie Demayo and Kerri Maya. Additionally, two members of the group School of Nursing members were recognized with special awards of excellence in gerontological research from the WIN Gerontology Special Interest Group, which seeks to build a cadre of gerontological nurses who improve care of older adults. Tonkikh, received a best abstract award for her presentation, “Family Involvement during Acute Hospitalization: Families’ and Nurses’ Perceptions.” Demayo received a student research award for her presentation, "Burden of Care across Generations: The Millennial Family Caregiver Experience.” Read more about the conference

Feb. 18, 2022 — Family Caregiving Institute Director shares insights, advice for National Caregivers Day
National Caregivers Day, which honors individuals who provide personal care and physical and emotional support to those who need it most, is recognized Feb. 18. In a Q&A, UC Davis Health expert, Helen Kales, and Family Caregiving Institute Director Terri Harvath share insights and advice for the approximately 40 million caregivers in the U.S. who play such a vital role in the care of frail, older adults.

Feb. 3, 2022 — Student-run UC Davis newspaper features Family Caregiving Institute collaboration with AARP
The California Aggie article, Video series seeks to provide family caregivers with educational resources, highlights the Home Alone Alliance videos and resources the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing developed in partnership with AARP. Heather M. Young, who led the project when it first launched in 2014 and is now the associate director for Strategic Partnerships for the institute, discusses how the project combines the school’s research and clinical expertise with AARP’s outreach and public engagement.

Jan. 25, 2022 — Family caregivers who provide complex care face more physical and mental health challenges
Family caregivers in California who receive services from a network of support organizations are at higher risk of physical and mental health concerns, including isolation and loneliness. But a unique online tool can better tailor assistance and gather important data to help. Read the news release

Dec. 2, 2021 — Family Caregiving Institute celebrates grand opening of Healthy Aging Clinic

Healthy Aging Clinic ribbon cutting

UC Davis Health officially opened its new Healthy Aging Clinic in midtown Sacramento. Leaders from the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, along with UC Davis Health and School of Nursing leaders, celebrated the milestone event with a ribbon cutting ceremony along with a preview of the multiple services provided. The new clinic includes a team of primary care geriatricians and multidisciplinary specialists, who offer cognitive assessments, a pharmacy for medication management, physical and occupational therapy, caregiving support, nutrition consults, a dementia care program, a mobility clinic and, eventually, advanced care planning guidance. In addition, caregivers of those patients benefit from consultations with experts from the Family Caregiving Institute. Nurse practitioner and physician assistant students from the School of Nursing will also experience clinical rotations in the clinic.
Read the news release »
Read the newspaper article »

Nov. 13, 2021 — Institute director leads 2021 Gerontological Society of America conference
Terri Harvath, director for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis and senior director for strategic initiatives at the school, led the four-day Gerontological Society of America (GSA) 2021 Annual Scientific Meeting Nov. 10-13. Terri, who serves as the 2021 GSA president, led a number of sessions at the annual meeting. She opened the conference with presidential remarks and the announcement of annual award winners. She also introduced the keynote speaker, Jessica Zitter, a physician and filmmaker who directed “Caregiver: A Love Story.” Terri also led the annual business meeting and installation of the society’s 2022 president. Finally, she served as panelist and discussant for several symposium sessions. The event concluded her year as the society’s president. She now serves as past president. GSA is the oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education and practice in the field of aging. GSA’s principal mission is to promote the study of aging and disseminate information to scientists, decision makers and the general public.

Nov. 9, 2021 — Institute and School of Nursing host webinar
During National Family Caregivers Month, the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis and documentary filmmaker Jessica Zitter present a film screening and panel discussion on the valuable role of family caregivers. Janice F. Bell, Western Health Advantage Endowed Professor, welcomes experts in caregiving resources and research for the discussion. The Nov. 9 webinar included expert perspectives on the challenges of caregiving, the latest in practice, research and policy in the field of caregiving and a discussion of current School of Nursing caregiving-focused research. Watch a recording of the webinar »

Nov. 3, 2021 — Institute leaders, faculty present at Alzheimer’s Disease Center workshop
A team of leaders and faculty from the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing led several presentations for the UC Davis Alzheimer’s Disease Center virtual Caregiver Workshop Nov. 3. The free, half-day workshop provided caregivers with information and resources to help them navigate the complex journey of caring for people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Heather M. Young, associate director for Strategic Partnerships at the institute and also a professor at the School of Nursing, presented the keynote address, “Family Caregivers Make a World of Difference.” Oanh Meyer, an associate professor of neurology, and Fawn Cothran, an assistant professor in the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, discussed caregiver initiatives at the Alzheimer’s Disease Center. Both Oanh and Fawn are also Family Caregiving Institute faculty. Terri Harvath, institute director and senior director for strategic initiatives at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, shared resources available at the UC Davis Health Healthy Aging Clinic. Theresa Pak, a relationship-based culture and wellness strategist and nurse manager at UC Davis Medical Center, also discussed the power of practicing gratitude. Theresa is an alumna of the School of Nursing master’s-degree leadership program.

July 7, 2021 — Ageism Awareness is Key to Meaningful Change
Terri Harvath, senior director for strategic initiatives and director for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, pens her third column, “Ageism Awareness is Key to Meaningful Change,” in the July issue of the Gerontology Association of America’s January issue of the newsletter, “Gerontology Today,” asking readers to uncover new perspectives and findings about ageism in order to avoid harmful consequences for older adults.

May 28, 2021 — Institute director discusses caring for caregivers on local television show
Family Caregiving Institute Director Terri Harvath and caregiver Nancy Pennebaker join host Scott Syphax on KVIE’s “Studio Sacramento” television show for a conversation about being a caregiver and how to help them take care of themselves so they can care for others. The show, “When Caregivers Need Care,” aired May 28 with a recording available on the local PBS affiliate’s website. During the show, Terri discusses the changing demographics that influence aging, COVID-19 challenges for older adults and family caregivers and the new Family Caregiving Institute services at the UC Davis Healthy Aging Clinic. Nancy, who sought support at the clinic, discusses how the caregiver support has changed her life forever.

April 15, 2021 — Family Caregiving Institute director provides keynote address at national conference
Terri Harvath, the director of the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, was a keynote speaker for the 2021 Nurses Improving Care for Health System Elders (NICHE) annual conference Driving Geriatric Nursing Excellence, which was offered online. Terri discussed how to assess family caregiver preparedness at discharge planning and also about how to alleviate the different sources of stress. She was one of four keynote speakers for the event. NICHE, a nursing organization, seeks to impart principles and tools to stimulate changes in clinical practice to achieve patient-centered nursing care for older adults in health care facilities. The vision of NICHE is that all older adults, ages 65 and over, receive age-friendly, exemplary nursing care.

April 9, 2021 — Family Caregiving Institute director pens column on safety and quality of life
Terri Harvath, the director for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing and president for the Gerontological Society of America (GSA), published the column, “Safety vs. Autonomy and Quality of Life,” in the April issue of Gerontology News. In her column, Terri discusses the importance of both protecting older adults from health risks while also ensuring that quality of life and autonomy are also protected. She suggests including input of older adults while developing plans to ensure their safety and well-being. As president of GSA, Terri writes a column regularly for the monthly publication.

March 25, 2021 — Family Caregiving Institute director speaks at Commonwealth Club online forum
Terri Harvath, director of the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, was a guest speaker for the Commonwealth Club’s online event, “Healthy Society Series: 10,000 a Day Turn 65 in America. The Rise of Family Caregivers of the Elderly.” During the event, Terri discussed how optimizing home-based care requires a systematic approach. Terri was joined by Susan Reinhard, AARP Public Policy Institute Director, and Jonathan Davis, founder and CEO for Trualta, a personalized, skills-based training platform for family members caring for older adults at home. The Commonwealth Club of California is the nation’s oldest and largest public affairs forum. The group presents more than 450 events annually that focus on a broad range of topics.

Feb. 20, 2021 — Nursing professor serves as panelist for Alzheimer’s Association event
Fawn Cothran, an assistant professor for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, was a panelist for “Black Women and Dementia: Two Sides of the Story,” a virtual discussion led by the Alzheimer’s Association. The one-hour moderated panel discussion focused on the dementia realms that frequently impact Black women. Black women are diagnosed with dementia at disproportionately higher rates than white women. They also frequently take on the role as lead caregiver in many Black families, carrying the responsibility for all aspects of care for a family member diagnosed with dementia. Fawn addressed the impact of caregiver stress on mental and physical wellness for Black women serving as dementia caregivers. Another panelist, physician Anafidelia Tavares, shared the impact of health disparities and other factors resulting in higher rates of dementia in Black women. The online event was sponsored by the Capitol City Black Nurses Association, the Bay Area Black Nurses Association, Inc., and the Rho Delta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

Feb. 8, 2021 — Family Caregiving Institute releases study of state caregiver center expansion
A team of researchers from the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis is providing research support for a $30 million project to expand and improve California’s 11 Caregiver Resource Centers. Heather M. Young, associate director for strategic partnerships at the institute; Janice Bell, institute faculty; and Jennifer Mongoven, administrative director; recently completed their first-year study exploring how technology can help the centers provide caregivers with better, more targeted services. The team reported that the first year of the project was successfully implemented, even with the pandemic, which forced the implementation to go remote immediately. In assessing the data already gathered, the team discovered that caregivers are younger with many in the sandwich generation of caring for parents and children. Heather recently provided an interview with the Family Caregiver Alliance to share the results of the report and discuss future implications.

Jan. 6, 2021 — Disruption to Transformation: Aging in the ‘New Normal’
Terri Harvath, senior director for strategic initiatives and director for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, pens a column in the January issue of the Gerontology Association of America’s January issue of the newsletter, “Gerontology Today,” calling for continued work toward innovative solutions to provide equitable care for older adults and other vulnerable populations. January marked the start of her term as president of the national association.

Nov. 19, 2020 — UC Davis Facebook Live to feature Family Caregiving Institute director
In a normal year, the holidays are a time to gather with family and friends. But 2020 isn’t a normal year and elderly people are especially at risk from COVID-19. How can we safely mark the holidays while supporting older relatives and their family caregivers? UC Davis offers a Facebook Live discussion at 11 a.m. Nov. 19 to discuss these issues. Terri Harvath, senior director for strategic initiatives and director for the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, is one of two UC Davis experts who will discuss holiday safety during the pandemic. Natascha Tuznik, an assistant clinical professor in the UC Davis Health Department of Internal Medicine, is the other featured expert. She is an infectious disease specialist and former hospitalist who specializes in general infectious diseases and infection control practices. The conversation begins at 11 a.m. Nov. 19 on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Questions can be submitted via Facebook and Twitter either in advance or during the show.

Oct. 2, 2020 — AARP collaboration releases six new caregiving videos
The Home Alone Alliance, a collaboration led by AARP, recently released six new videos supporting family caregivers. The series, developed in part by leaders in the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, is funded by RRF Foundation for Aging. The Home Alone Alliance, which first launched in 2016, provides resources for caregivers performing complex nursing tasks, including the how-to videos and resource guides on everything from preparing special diets to wound care to managing medications. Six new videos were recently added to the collection and topics include using oxygen equipment, using a nebulizer, using a mechanical lift for transfers, managing home infusion and more. The vides run about 5 to 10 minutes each and are available on the Home Alone Alliance website.

Sept. 28, 2020 — Alumna’s article detailing tool to asses caregiver readiness garners recognition
An article by Michelle Camicia, a 2018 graduate of the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis doctoral program, and a team of nursing faculty, was recently recognized by two organizations for the authors’ scientific contributions. The article, ”Development of an Instrument to Assess Stroke Caregivers’ Readiness for the Transition Home,” was originally published online in January 2019 in Rehabilitation Nursing, a journal of the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses (ARN). It was recently published in the September-October print version of the journal. Following the print publication, ARN noted the article was one of three hot topic articles for the issue and was featured in an ARN Newswise research alert. In the first week that it was published, the alert generated more than 11,000 hits and it appeared at the top of the news on Google News in searches related to instruments and stroke. The article highlights Michelle’s research to develop a measure to assess stroke caregivers’ commitment and capacity to assume the caregiving role prior to patients’ discharge. Other contributing authors included Barbara Lutz of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington School of Nursing along with UC Davis School of Nursing faculty Terri Harvath, Katherine Kim and Jill Joseph. The article was selected for the American Heart Association Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing (CVSN) 2020 Stroke Article of the Year. Michelle is the director of the Kaiser Foundation Rehabilitation Center in Vallejo. The center supports those recovering from stroke, brain or spinal cord injury.

July 15, 2020 — Nursing faculty pens editorial with international team examining nursing home staffing during pandemic
Elena O. Siegel, an associate professor and associate director for the Betty Irene Moore Fellowship Program for Nurse Leaders and Innovators at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, collaborated with an international team of 22 long-term care experts to write the editorial, “Uncovering the Devaluation of Nursing Home Staff During COVID-19: Are We Fueling the Next Health Care Crisis?” in the July edition of the Journal of Post-acute and Long-term Care Medicine (JAMDA). The editorial outlines the need to better protect the frail, older adults living in nursing homes, along with their family members and the staff providing care. Elena’s international collaborations stem back to 2010, when she joined a group leading a series of conferences focused on registered nurses in long term care. In 2016, the group expanded and established a new, international consortium, Worldwide Elements To Harmonize Research In long-term care liVing Environments (WE-THRIVE). The WE-THRIVE goal is to develop an international long-term care research infrastructure that supports person-centered and directed care and quality. Elena serves in three key WE-THRIVE leadership roles: steering committee member, chair of the External and Organizational Context sub-committee and co-convener of Systems Research in Long-Term Care, a Gerontological Society of America (GSA) special interest group. 

May 26, 2020 — Nursing professor publishes article exploring pandemic’s impact on policy
Heather M. Young, nursing professor and internationally recognized expert on aging issues, recently published an article in the Journal of Gerontological Nursing summarizing significant federal and state policy changes in response to COVID-19 to improve health care access for older adults. The article, “COVID-19 Pandemic Spurs Policy Changes Benefiting Older Adults,” highlights the need for policy changes to meet new demands of health systems due to the pandemic. Specifically, the article explores the need to permanently increase older adults’ access to health care through advanced practice nurses and nurses. Heather wrote the article with several other recognized gerontological experts, including Winifred Quinn, Andrea Brassard, Claudio Gualtieri and Susan Reinhard.

May 13, 2020 — Nursing professor contributes to American Heart Association Scientific Statement
Julie Bidwell, an assistant professor with the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, worked with a multidisciplinary research team to develop an American Heart Association Scientific Statement on family caregiving in heart failure. The statement, “Family Caregiving for Individuals with Heart Failure: A Scientific Statement from the American Heart Association,” was published in the association’s journal, Circulation. According to an association news release, the statement presents an overview of the challenges faced by unpaid family members who are caregivers for people with heart failure. The statement calls for health care providers to be more inclusive of caregivers when working with heart failure patients.

April 8, 2020 — Nursing professor pens editorial on impact of COVID-19 on frail, older adults and caregivers
Heather M. Young, a professor at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, published the editorial, “Public Health and Ethics Intersect at New Levels With Gerontological Nursing in COVID-19 Pandemic,” on the Journal of Gerontological Nursing website. The editorial, co-authored by Donna M. Fick, a professor at Penn State College of Nursing, describes how the COVID-19 pandemic underscores the unique needs for caregivers of older, frail patients with chronic disease. The authors discuss that while the pandemic presents many challenges, creative solutions are also emerging to improve the care of older persons. Heather is a nationally recognized expert in gerontological nursing, a co-leader of the Healthy Aging in a Digital World initiative at UC Davis Health, a co-director for strategic partnerships for the Family Caregiving Institute at the school, and national director for the Betty Irene Moore Fellowship Program for Nurse Leaders and Innovators.

March 23, 2020 — Practical tips for caregivers concerned about coronavirus  

Home_Alone For the past five years, researchers at the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing have partnered with AARP to provide a series of videos to support caregivers as they navigate tasks such as managing medicines and caring for wounds. The team at AARP recently published the webpage, “Practical tips for caregivers concerned about coronavirus,” as a resource to caregivers. The Family Caregiving Institute also shares this resource to help caregivers prepare and reduce exposure to the virus.

Feb. 24 — Family Caregiving Institute research team publishes journal supplement  
Faculty and alumni from the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis recently published a special supplement, “Advancing Family Caregiving Research,” to the journal, The Gerontologist, which is produced by the Gerontological Society of America. Associate Professor Elena Siegel served as an editor of the supplement and wrote the editorial, “New Directions to Advance Family Caregiving Research,” with Ken Hepburn, a professor at the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing at Emory University. The supplement includes four articles that explore the research of the Family Caregiving Institute and highlight the group’s initial findings. Authors include faculty Terri Harvath, Julie Bidwell, Fawn Cothran, Kathryn Sexson, Heather M. Young, Janice Bell, Ester Carolina Apesoa-Varano and Katherine Kim. Doctoral alumnae Robin Whitney, Ronit Ridberg and Sarah Reed also contributed to the journal.

EngineeringFeb. 6, 2020 — Undergraduate engineering students design tools to support caregivers
Several UC Davis undergraduate engineering students are designing tools to help family caregivers as part of their term project, or design challenge, for the Introduction to Engineering Design Course. The students toured the Family Caregiving Institute at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing recently to learn more about the needs of caregivers and the people they care for at home. The students are teaming up to design tools addressing a number of problems ranging from communication and safety to sleep issues and positive interaction. The teams present their final designs at showcase event in March.