My expertise is in the dissemination and implementation of evidence- and community-based health promotion programs for adults with a focus on physical activity interventions. I have secured research and training grant funding from CDC and other agencies. As lead of the Coordinating Center for the CDC Healthy Aging Research Network (HAN) I oversee our multi-sector efforts which include conducting research; developing trainings and resources, and influencing policies to promote healthy aging in diverse settings and populations. I am an investigator at the Health Promotion Research Center and serve as led for our EnhanceFitness efforts. My earlier work was in rheumatology and symptom management where I developed a fatigue scale that is now available in 25 languages. Students work with me who are passionate to build evidence to support healthy aging; motivated to learn research methods and participate on productive, fun and collaborative teams; and committed to working with community partners.
I teach a variety of courses in the undergraduate and graduate programs in the SoN. I have taught the research course to undergraduate students, the theory course to PhD students, the health promotion course to DNP students, and the gerontology course to all students. I am an advisor to PhD students, chair of supervisory committees for PhD and DNP students, and mentor to undergraduate and graduate students who have successfully competed for de Tornyay scholarships and other internal and external grants.
Practice, Service, Community Involvement
At any given time I serve on a number of boards for non-profit organizations, review manuscripts for various health professional journals, review grants for federal and private foundations, serve on professional association committees, and volunteer my time for local causes to support healthy aging. I conduct research in collaboration with community agencies and directly apply my findings to practice.
- Bushman L, Christianson P, Belza B (2012). Older Adult Hearing Loss and Screening in Primary Care. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, 8 (7), 509-514.
- Rosenberg D, Huang, D, Simonvich S, & Belza B. (2012) Outdoor Built Environment Barriers and Facilitators to Activity among Midlife and Older Adults with Mobility Disabilities. The Gerontologist 2012; doi: 10.1093/geront/gns119.
- Dewing K, LaCroix A, Zierler B, Belza B (2013). Clinical Decision Support System Improves Bone Mineral Density Screening Rates in 65 Year Old Women. Nurse Practitioner.
- Hunter RH, Anderson LA, Belza B, Bodiford K, Hooker SP, Kochtitzky CS, et al. (2013). Environments for Healthy Aging: Linking Prevention Research and Public Health Practice. Prev Chronic Dis 2013;10:120244. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5888/pcd10.120244
- Belza B, Snyder S, Thompson M, LoGerfo J. (2010). From Research to Practice: EnhanceFitness ®, An Innovative Community-based Senior Exercise Program. Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation, 26 (4), 299-309.
Current Research Projects
- Healthy Aging Research Network Coordinating Center. CDC (PI).
- Developing a Clearinghouse for Environmental Policy Change to Support Healthy Aging. CDC (PI).
- Adapting Measures of the Built Environment and Physical Activity for Older Adults with Disabilities. UW HPRC/CDC (PI).
- Enhancing Competencies of Advanced Practice Nurses in Caring for Older Adults. DHHS Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA) (PI).
- Dissemination of an Evidence Based Program through a Nationally Networked Organization. UW HPRC/CDC (PI)