Meet UNMC New Investigator Katherine Jones, Ph.D.

March 28, 2014

Image with caption: Katherine Jones, Ph.D.

Katherine Jones, Ph.D.

This profile is part of a series to highlight the 16 researchers and one community member who will be honored at a ceremony for UNMC's 2013 Scientist Laureate, Research Leadership, Distinguished Scientist, New Investigator and Community Service to Research Award recipients.

  • Name: Katherine Jones, Ph.D.
  • Title: Associate professor, physical therapy education, School of Allied Health Professions
  • Joined UNMC: June 15, 2000
  • Hometown: Lincoln

Describe your research briefly in layman's terms.
I measure the safety and quality of care that hospitals provide and work with health care professionals to improve it. We use strategies such as teamwork and learning from data to make it easier to do the right thing. Currently, my research team is working with 17 small rural hospitals to use teamwork between nurses, physical therapists, pharmacists and quality improvement coordinators to decrease the risk that patients will fall in the hospital. As a physical therapist and health services researcher, fall risk reduction is an area of patient safety that is of particular importance to me.

How does your research contribute to science and/or health care?
My research helps us understand how to improve the ability of people to use research findings and evidence-based practices in their daily routine and thus improve the safety and quality of care.

What is the best piece of advice anyone ever gave you, professional or personal?
Set a long-term vision for your work and don't lose sight of that vision, because we always overestimate what we can achieve in the short term, but we underestimate what we can achieve in the long term.

List three things few people know about you.

  • I have twin grandsons who are absolutely adorable!
  • I am training to run in the Omaha Corporate Cup and want to beat or at least equal my time from 12 years ago.
  • I love history and learning how leadership and teamwork have solved problems in the past -- Doris Kearns Goodwin's books are among my favorites.

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Mary Haven
April 02, 2014 at 2:25 PM

I am so pleased that you received a New Investigator Award. Allied Health has been strengthened by your becoming a PT faculty member. I know you will continue to bring prestige to your department and UNMC. I am also a Doris Kearns Goodwin fan. That was fun to hear about, as well as adorable twin grandsons.