- Dr Linda Schnitker
Faculty of Health,
School - Nursing
- IHBI Membership
Institute of Health Biomedical Innovation (IHBI),
IHBI Health Projects,
IHBI Nursing - CDA
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- +61 7 3138 0813
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PhD (University of Queensland)
Linda is dedicated to improving care for older people through education and research. In Linda’s current role as a health academic with a nursing background, she is responsible for teaching within QUT’s School of Nursing and carrying out gerontology focused research. Her role is to prepare the school and healthcare industry for the increased needs of an ageing population by leading projects to ensure aged care is included in the nursing curriculum and creating positive attitudes towards the aged care industry and the care of the older person. She coordinates a teaching unit and educates undergraduate nursing students to become competent and skilled in caring for older people.
Linda’s research primarily focuses on the care of older people with cognitive impairment (i.e. delirium, dementia). Linda has an established research program focused on the care of people with dementia in emergency departments (ED) and her current track record shows that she has become a leader in this field of research. She envisages healthcare organisations implementing changes in the EDs’ model of care that will benefit the increasing older ED population with dementia by carrying out research and knowledge translation projects resulting in, for example, increased recognition of cognitive impairment and delirium, prevention of delirium, increased proxy involvement, and improved pain assessment.
Linda completed her Doctor of Philosophy Program, in which she developed quality indicators for the care of older people with cognitive impairment presenting to ED, at The University of Queensland in 2015. To date, her program of research post PhD has led to the establishment of a validated, multi-component intervention to prevent delirium in older people with dementia in ED and the development of a dementia education program targeting the multi-disciplinary team working in EDs. Also, she developed and implemented a resource to assist carers of people with dementia to prepare for a natural disaster in Australia – The Carer Ready Guide.
Linda has a strong national and international network including like-minded people from different disciplines who desire to improve care quality for older people. She was actively involved in the set-up of the International Federation of Emergency Medicine (IFEM) Geriatric Special Interest Group (e.g. developing operational guidelines). Also, she is an active member of the International Consortium of Emergency Geriatrics, which is a multinational organisation of experts in the field of geriatric emergency care dedicated to improving the care and outcomes of older people treated in EDs around the globe.