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Virginia Neelon, PhD, RN

Associate Professor

Phone: (919) 966-1410
Specialty Area: Gerontology

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
School of Nursing
Carrington Hall, CB #7460
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7460
Office: 543

Virginia Neelon, RN, PhD is an Associate Professor and Director of the Biobehavioral Laboratory of the School of Nursing. She received a baccalaureate degree from Duke University School of Nursing, and a master's degree in nursing from the University of California at San Francisco. Her PhD in physiology and pharmacology from Duke University focused on membrane transport and the effects of aging on gastrointestinal transport. Her research and clinical interests apply physiological and behavioral approaches to understanding acute and chronic illness in older adults. She was principal investigator in a NIH-NINR funded study of nursing interventions to prevent acute confusion (delirium) in hospitalized elders; as part of this research developed a tool to measure acute confusion (the NEECHAM Confusion Scale). She is currently studying hypoxia, sleep and cognitive decline in older adults. As director of Biobehavioral Laboratory and consultant to the Center for Research on Chronic Illness, she provides expertise and training in ways to measure biobehavioral responses to stress and illness, in measurements using minimally invasive instrumentation, and in the assessment of cognitive impairment in older persons.