UCSF professor receives top award in nurse leadership in aging

By Kristen Bole

Jeanie Kayser-Jones, RN, PhD, FAAN

UCSF School of Nursing Professor Jeanie Kayser-Jones, RN, PhD, FAAN, has received the first annual “Nurse Leader in Aging Award” from the American Academy of Nursing and the John A. Hartford Foundation, in recognition of her significant advancements in the field of gerontological nursing.

This is the second national honor Kayser-Jones has received in the past month in recognition of her outstanding dedication to promoting quality health and nursing care for older Americans. It was presented to her at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Nursing in Washington, DC, on November 10.

In late October, Kayser-Jones also received the “Cernoria Johnson Memorial Advocacy Award” from the National Citizens’ Coalition for Nursing Home Reform, in recognition of a lifetime of exceptional research that has had a national impact on nursing home care and has brought national attention to malnutrition, dehydration and the care of terminally-ill nursing home residents.

A professor of gerontological nursing and medical anthropology, Kayser-Jones is internationally renowned for her rigorous, systematic investigation of the social, cultural, clinical, environmental and political factors that influence the quality of care in nursing homes.

“Dr. Kayser-Jones has been an unwavering force in her efforts to improve the care of nursing home residents and has served as a voice for those who have no voice,” said UCSF School of Nursing Dean Kathleen Dracup, RN, FNP, DNSc, FAAN. “This national recognition is considered one of the highest honors in nursing and is justly deserved.”

The author of “Old, Alone, and Neglected: Care of the Aged in Scotland and the United States,”  Kayser-Jones’ research efforts have focused on improving the quality of care and the quality of life of older people who spend their last days in nursing homes.

Kayser-Jones also was founder and former director of the John A. Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence at UCSF, where she has taught for the past 28 years. She has been a dedicated teacher and mentor to hundreds of nursing students, Dracup said.

An international lecturer, Kayser-Jones has published her research findings in more than 150 articles in nursing, medicine, law and social science journals, as well as in books and book chapters. She has been widely honored for her research, which has been consistently funded by the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute on Aging, the National Institute of Nursing Research and the National Cancer Institute. She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, the American Academy of Nursing and the American Anthropological Society.

The Nurse Leader in Aging Award was created in recognition of the critical importance of gerontological nursing in meeting the health and health care needs of the US population. Its aim is to recognize significant achievements, contributions, productivity, competence, leadership and mentorship in the field of aging. Candidates are recognized leaders in their fields whose work advances new areas of knowledge and has changed the understanding of issues in aging. Their expertise covers the spectrum of gerontological nursing, including health care, research, education, politics and public service.

The UCSF School of Nursing leads the nation in nursing research, from heart disease and cancer to pain management and healthy aging. The School consistently ranks first in funding from the National Institutes of Health as a testament to the caliber of that research. Now celebrating its 100th anniversary, the School of Nursing has graduated more than 10,000 nurses since its creation after the Great San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 and is considered among the foremost nursing schools in the world in training the next generation of nursing leadership.

The American Academy of Nursing serves the public and the nursing profession by advancing health policy and practice through the generation, synthesis, and dissemination of nursing knowledge. Every day across America, the Academy and its members create and execute knowledge-driven and policy-related initiatives to drive reform of America’s health care system.

note: Jeanie Kayser-Jones photo available upon request