Department of Adult Health and Gerontological Nursing

Message from the Department Chair:

Frank D. Hicks, PhD, RN, CNE

Welcome to the Department of Adult Health and Gerontological Nursing! We are a group of outstanding and committed faculty and staff who are dedicated to excellence, innovation, and leadership in health care. Rush University is built on the teacher-practitioner model, integrating education, practice and research. The department embraces this model by providing strong support for the personal and professional development of our students, faculty, and staff. Commensurate with the College of Nursing’s mission, the goal of the department is to foster excellence in teaching, practice, and scholarship, to contribute to improved health outcomes of adults and older adults, and to advocate for health equity and social justice in an increasingly diverse society. As such, we are strongly committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Departmental faculty include highly qualified clinicians, educators and scientists from a variety of disciplines (e.g., nursing, medicine and basic sciences), with subspecialty expertise in adult acute, critical, and primary care. Faculty share their knowledge and expertise as published authors; frequent speakers at local, regional, national, and international professional meetings; active leaders in professional organizations; editors of journals and books; and as practice, educational, and research consultants.  Several faculty are funded by the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR), have served as members of NIH Data and Safety Monitoring Board, and have received funding from a variety of other local, state and federal research-related groups and foundations. Current areas of funded research include quality of life outcomes in post heart transplant patients, African-American women’s response to physical activity and interventions to reduce cardiac risk. The department is deeply committed to collaborative research and quality improvement projects, one example being the study of adverse events of hospitalization for older adults and a DNP-PhD collaborative project examining hospital-acquired delirium. Faculty in the department also lead the Center for Clinical Research and Scholarship, a joint venture between the College of Nursing and Rush University Medical Center’s division of nursing, to foster collaborative research and quality improvement/translational science projects that improve client health outcomes.  

Finally, our advanced practice programs are consistently ranked in the top 5 by U.S. News and World Report. These include the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs in Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, and Nurse Anesthesia, as well as a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) option in Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nursing. The departmental staff and faculty also support other programs within the college, including the pre- and post-licensure Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) programs, and the Transformative Leadership DNP program. 

We are proud of our contributions to the practice, education, and science of nursing, and are pleased to contribute to the excellence of the College of Nursing, Rush University and Rush University Medical Center.