I am a psychologist and researcher with more than 30 years in the field. My focus is on developing clinical interventions to help children who have acute and chronic conditions adhere to their medical treatments. My research is specifically concerned with dietary adherence. Diet is one of the more difficult behavioral changes to make, but it yields significant impact on health.
I came to Cincinnati Children’s in 1998. One line of my research here is helping families of children with cystic fibrosis (CF). Dietary recommendations for these children require that they consume 50% to 100% more calories than a child without this condition.
Our web-based intervention, called BeInCharge.org, is currently being tested in clinical practice. This intervention, for children ages 3 to 12 with CF, is one of the most researched and effective treatments for helping families change behavioral patterns to meet CF dietary guidelines.
My interest in research began when I worked with families clinically and saw the struggles they experienced trying to get their child with CF to eat more, or their child with obesity to eat less. A second area of my research addresses obesity in young children — preschoolers, toddlers and at-risk infants.
During my career, I’m proud to have received the Logan Wright Distinguished Research Award from the Society of Pediatric Psychology, Division 54 of the American Psychological Association (APA), in 2003. I also received the 2015 Society of Pediatric Psychology Award for Outstanding Mentorship, Division 54 of the APA. And I was honored by the Greater Cincinnati YWCA as a YWCA Career Woman of Achievement in 2015.
Health psychology; anxiety; behavior problems; parent training; adherence to medical regimen; coping with illness
Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics