Innovator of the Year: Student
Second-year PhD student, Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing
For more than three decades, Pam Bolton has worked as a registered nurse and board-certified acute care nurse practitioner in a variety of hospital settings, providing care to acutely or critically ill patients and their families. Through her clinical experiences, she has identified how sleep deprivation impacts the recovery of critically ill patients.
Now pursuing her PhD, she has uncovered an area of research that, her nominator said, has been “underappreciated by clinicians”: how circadian rhythm misalignment and sleep deprivation in the intensive care unit can disrupt a critically ill patient’s physiology and overall recovery.
Bolton specifically is focused on disentangling how social determinants—in particular racial identity—affect rhythm mechanisms in patients recovering from cardiac surgery.
“Pam has demonstrated the ability to use innovative and interdisciplinary approaches to capture sleep, circadian rhythm, and glucoregulation and will explore if racial identity, as a social determinant, affects the relationships among her study variables,” her nominator wrote. “Her work has been recognized as innovative and significant.”