Sara E Bills, PT, DPT, GCS

Assistant Professor and Associate Director

Department of Department of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences
Division of Physical Therapy Education
University of Nebraska Medical Center
984420 Nebraska Medical Center
Omaha, NE 68198-4420

Academic Appointments:
Associate Director, Division of Physical Therapy Education, UNMC: 2020-present
Assistant Professor, Division of Physical Therapy Education, University of Nebraska Medical Center: March 2014-present

DPT: Division of Physical Therapy Education, UNMC, 2004
BS: Education, Teachers College, University of Nebraska – Lincoln, 2001
Credentialed Clinical Instructor: American Physical Therapy Association, 2010
Board Certified Geriatric Clinical Specialist: American Board of Physical Therapy Specialists, 2009
2019 renewal

Primary Teaching Responsibilities:
PHYT 560, Seminar 1 (course coordinator/instructor)
PHYT 610, Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy (course coordinator/instructor)
PHYT 611, Cardiopulmonary and Integumentary Physical Therapy II (course coordinator/instructor)

Scholarly Activity:
Research interests: adherence in individuals with heart failure, holistic admissions practices and effective teaching methods.

Publications and Presentations (last 5 years):
Alonso, W, Pozehl B, Norman J, Bills S, Lundgren S, Kupzyk K, Keteyian K. Predictors of Long-Term Adherence to Exercise in Adults With Heart Failure Enrolled in an Exercise Clinical Trial, AHA Scientific Meeting, November 2021.

Bills S, Gossman K. Create! Engage! Collaborate! Teaching with Nearpod. Educational session for UNMC Faculty Development Series, Online, February 4, 2021.

Alonso WW, Kupzyk K, Norman J, Bills SE, Bosak K, Dunn SL, Deka P, Pozehl BJ. Negative attitudes, self-efficacy, and relapse management mediate long-term adherence to exercise in patients with heart failure. Annals of Behavioral Medicine. 2021. doi:10.1093/abm/kaab002.

Bills S: Co-Author, Challenges and Opportunities in Healthcare Leadership: Voices from the Crowd in Today’s Complex and Interprofessional Healthcare Environment, In Preparation with UNMC HEROES Staff. September 2020.

Bills S, Gossman K. Using Nearpod for online classes. Micro-session for UNMC Faculty Development, From Lemons to Lemonade: Successes in Teaching During a Pandemic, Online, August 20, 2020.

Bills S, Custer T, Zimmerman H. Enhancing interactivity in your Zoom classroom. UNMC CAHP, Online, July 16, 2020.

Bills S. HEART Camp: Long Term Outcomes in Physical Function and Symptoms in Patients with Heart Failure. Platform presentation at the Combined Sections Meeting, Denver, CO, February 14, 2020.

Norman JF, Kupzyk KA, Artinian NT, Keteyian SJ, Alonso WS, Bills SE, Pozehl BJ. (2019). The influence of the HEART Camp intervention on physical function, health-related quality of life, depression, anxiety and fatigue in patients with heart failure. European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing. doi:10.1177/1474515119867444

Bills S, Karst G, Meyer K. Chart a Course for Holistic Admissions Transformation Using an Interprofessional Model. Educational presentation at the Educational Leadership Conference, Bellevue, WA, October 20, 2019.

McBrien S, Winnicki M, Bills S, Meyer K. Meeting Our Mission Through Holistic Admissions. Concurrent session at the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions, Charleston, SC, October 18, 2019.

Parry I, Schneider J, Yelvington M, Sharp P, Serghiou M, Ryan C, Richardson E, Pontius K, Niszczak J, Mcmahon M, Macdonald L, Lorello D, Kehrer C, Godleski M, Forbes L, Duch S, Crump D, Chouinard A, Calva V, Bills S, Benavides L, Acharya H, Oliveira A, Boruff J, Nedelec, B. Systematic Review and Expert Consensus on the Use of Orthoses (Splints and Casts) with Adults and Children after Burn Injury to Determine Practice Guidelines. Journal of Burn Care & Research. September 2019. doi: 10.1093/jbcr/irz150

Becker BJ, Bills S, Fuchs RH, Gossman K, Wells T, Moore P. Developing Interactive Curricular Elements with Teams of Faculty, Staff and Students. Educational presentation at the Innovations in OT and PT Education National Summit, Creighton University, Omaha, NE, June 28, 2019.

Bills S, Bordenave L, Bowden M, Coleman-Salgado B, Mercuris K, Chesbro S. Prepare for Holistic Admissions Take-off: Perspectives from 5 Physical Therapy Programs. Educational Leadership Conference, Jacksonville, FL, October 12, 2018.

Bills S. Heart Failure and Exercise: A look at recent literature. Nebraska Physical Therapy Association Eastern District Meeting, Lincoln, NE, April 12, 2018.

Bills S. Developing Exercise Programs for Individuals with Heart Disease. Chang Gung University Interprofessional Meeting, Taipai, Taiwan, March 29, 2018.

Becker BJ, Bills S. Transforming Physical Therapy Education Through the Use of Social Network Analysis. Platform Presentation at the American Physical Therapy Association Educational Leadership Conference, Columbus, OH, October 11-15, 2017.

Bills S. Course clickbait: moving from online audio lectures to interactive eLearning modules. University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD, July 25, 2017.

Bills S, Johnson T. Student Perceptions of a 360-degree Feedback Model in a Cardiopulmonary Examination Simulation. Poster Presentation at the Online Learning Consortium Collaborate Regional Conference, Omaha, NE, June 6, 2017.

Bills S. Achieving optimal outcomes when working with individuals with Heart Failure. Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital, Lincoln, NE, March 28, 2017.

Bills S, Norman J. Achieving optimal outcomes when working with individuals with cardiac disease. Hillcrest Rehabilitation Hospital, Omaha, NE, March 7, 2017.


Member, American Physical Therapy Association (APTA): 2001-present
Ambassador, APTA PT Moves Me Campaign for Diversity in the Workforce, 2020-current
Member, APTA Academy of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary PT
Member, APTA Academy of Geriatrics
Member, Nebraska Physical Therapy Association: 2001-present
Chapter Delegate, Nebraska Physical Therapy Association, 2018-2019, 2021-current
Chair, Nebraska Physical Therapy Association, DEI Committee, 2021-current
Co-chair, Nebraska Physical Therapy Association, Eastern District, 2013-2018
Secretary/Treasurer, Nebraska Physical Therapy Association, Eastern District, 2011-2013
Item Writer, American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties - Geriatrics
Member, American Burn Association, 2007-2017
Member (appointed), Membership Advisory Council, American Burn Association, 2013-2017
Member, American Heart Association Advocacy Board, 2020-current