Photo of Gruss, Valerie

Valerie Gruss, PhD, APRN, CNP-BC, FAAN

Clinical Associate Professor

Director, ENGAGE-IL

Department of Biobehavioral Health Science

Contact

Building & Room:

754 NURS

Address:

845 S. Damen Ave., MC 802, Chicago, IL 60612

Office Phone Voice:

(312) 996-2193

About

Dr. Gruss, Clinical Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago, is a Geriatric Researcher, Clinician and Educator. She has a broad range of research experience and clinical expertise working in primary care and geriatrics with multidisciplinary teams in a variety of settings.

Dr. Gruss’s overall research focus is improving care of the older adult. Dr. Gruss is Co-Director of a, $3.2 million HRSA Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP) grant to (1) establish a geriatric education program preparing professionals to provide high-quality, patient-centered care to older adults and (2) provide education and training on Alzheimer’s disease. Her program, ENGAGE Illinois, (engageil.com) includes an online accredited geriatric training program and a Free downloadable mobile app, Dementia Guide Expert, available for iOS and Android. Since its launch 18 months ago, the App has been viewed/downloaded over 14,000 of times in more than 6 countries. The app has recently been translated into Spanish.  Dr. Gruss was awarded the Gerontological Advance Practice Nurses Association’s “Excellence in Research Award” and serves as a member of the International Dementia Scholars Collaborative (IDSC).

Dr. Gruss has been a practicing board certified nurse practitioner for over twenty years and the recipient of CON “Distinguished Scholarly Practice” award.  Dr. Gruss has been the lead clinical consultant for “Money Follows the Person/Pathways to Community Living” since the beginning of the program 9 years ago. She was awarded the UIC’s ‘Faculty Practice Award’ and was honored with the “Best Care Practices in the Geriatrics Continuum” award by the American Medical Directors Association. As a practicing geriatrician, Dr. Gruss was chosen as an official Delegate of the Chicago Sister Cities Chicago-Shanghai Exchange to Shanghai, China. Dr. Gruss was part of an 8-person team of geriatric practitioners, academics, lawyers and future leaders traveling to Shanghai to “share best geriatric practices and policy experiences, educate and promote international collaboration and overcome cultural division and develop on-going projects which promote human potential and functioning”.

Dr. Gruss teaches in the CON Graduate Program and has a strong commitment to interprofessional education.  In recognition of the growing national interest in interprofessional education (IPE), in 2009, Dr. Gruss, along with a multidisciplinary group of volunteer faculty from six UIC health science colleges (Applied Health Science, Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, and Social Work) and the Library of Health Sciences, engaged in efforts to create IPE opportunities for students in UIC’s health professions education programs. This group of volunteer faculty not only represented   an important multidisciplinary academic collaboration; it also aimed to use IPE to improve the clinical care environment at UIC, and ultimately to be a catalyst for systemic change in health care delivery throughout Illinois and the nation. They held the first campus-wide IPE Immersion Day in spring 2013, which included over 800 students from 11 disciplines and 2 regional campuses. This now annual event, IPE Immersion Day, includes over 1,000 UIC students from all our regional campuses. Dr. Gruss serves on the Vice Provosts’ Strategic Planning Committee for IPE and the Vice Chancellor’s IPE Steering Committee. Her commitment and involvement in these multidisciplinary collaborative efforts has moved IPE forward and established UIC as a leading site for interprofessional education and practice and resulted in awards, grants and scholarship.  Dr. Gruss was awarded the 2018 “Excellence in Education” award from the Gerontologic Advance Practice Nurses Association and UIC’s Teaching Recognition Award 2016.

Selected Grants

HRSA, Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), PI

HRSA, Assessment of Geriatric Interprofessional Training, Networking Grant, Co-Investigator

HRSA, Innovataive Geriatrics Program and Approaches to Care, Co-PI

John A. Hartford Foundation, Training Education Grant, PI

HRSA, Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training (BHWET) Program,, Co-Investigator

Selected Publications

Kottorp, A., Keehn, M., Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Peterson, E. Instrument Refinement for Measuring Self-Efficacy for Competence in Interprofessional Collaborative Practice: Development and Psychometric Analysis of IPECC-SET 27 and IPECC-SET 9. Journal of Interprofessional Care [8/2018]

Mitzen, P., Gruss, V. American Society on Aging, Aging Today, Aging Services Go Global-From Shanghai to Chicago and Back, (May 18, 2018)

Peterson, E., Koronkowski, M., Hasnain, M., & Gruss, V. (2017, Oct/Nov/Dec). UIC’s Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program “ENGAGE-IL” Leads to Educational Opportunities for Occupational Therapy Practitioners. The Illinois Occupational Therapy Association Communiqué, 4, 6-7.

Hasnain, M., Keehn, M., Gruss, V., Koronkowski, M., Altfeld, S., Mitchell, C., Association for Prevention Teaching and Research, APTR/CDC IPE Small Grant Program, UIC Transforming Health Disparities through Interprofessional Education, Research and Service.  APTR Academic Innovation Models website.http://www.academicinnovationmodels.org/interprofessional.html

Service to Community

2018-2017 only:

2018-2019       Gruss, V., Social Justice and Community Disparities Working Group, contribution to planned anthology

2017-2019       Gruss, V., Interprofessional Approaches to Health Disparities (IAHD), Faculty, Community-based Participatory Research Advisor

2017                Gruss, V.,Collaborative Approaches to Critical Event Reporting”, 2017 Adult Protection & Advocacy Conference, Adult Protective Services of Illinois, Springfield, Il, 9/27/17

2017                Gruss, V., Berkes, M., “Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover: Why is my Participant Acting this Way?”, Adult Protection & Advocacy Conference, Adult Protective Services of Illinois,                               Springfield, Il, September 27, 2017

Professional Leadership

International Delegate, Chicago Sister Cities China Exchange

Board Member, International Dementia Collaborative

Vice Chancellor’s, IPE Steering Committe, University of Illinois at Chicago

Vice Provost's Strategic Planning Commit, University of Illinois at Chicago

Notable Honors

2018, Fellow, American Academy of Nursing

2018, Excellence in Education, Gerontological Advance Practice Nurses

2017, Distinguished Scholarly Practice, UIC College of Nursing

2016, Excellence in Research, Gerontological Advance Practice Nurses

Education

PhD, Rush University, Chicago, Illinois
Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, John A. Hartford Foundation, N.Y., N.Y.
MSN, Rush University, Chicago, Illinois

Licensures and Certifications

Advance Practice Nurse/Certified Nurse Practitioner, AACN Certification, State of Illinois license

Registered Professional Nurse, State of Illinois

Professional Memberships

Professional Organizations

American Nurses Association

American Society on Aging

American Geriatrics Society

Chicagoland Gerontological Advance Practice Nurses

Geriatric Advance Practice Nurses Association

Geriatric Society of America

Illinois Medical Directors Association

Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine (AMDA)

Selected Presentations

2017-2018 ONLY (‡Invited presentation)

International

‡S. Altfeld, V. Gruss and M. Hasnain “Challenges for Sustainable Care: Growing the Geriatric Workforce in the U.S.-Engage-IL, University of Tsukuba (Japan), Global Science Week, September 21, 2018

Gruss, V., Hasnain, Integrating Community-based Interprofessional Care and Health Services to Optimize Health & Well-Being of Older Adult, Chicago Sister Cities International Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, August,2018

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Keynote Presentation, Interprofessional Approaches to Optimizing Health of Older Adults Across the Globe: The Chicago-Shanghai International Social Service Exchange. World health Day Celebration, April 2, 2018

 Gruss, V., Primary Care Responsibilities for Elders and the Shanghai Services Exchange Program, Anhui Province China Delegation, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, January 2018

Gruss, V., Primary Care Responsibilities for Elders and the Shanghai Services Exchange Program, Anhui Province China Delegation, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, January 2018

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Koronkowski, M., Digital Tools to Empower Persons with Dementia, their Families, and Clinicians: Creating a Dementia Care Mobile App, International Dementia Scholars Collaborative Forum, November 10, 2017

NATIONAL

Kottorp, A., Keehn, M., Hasnain. M., Gruss, V., Peterson, E., Validation of a Scale to Measure Self-Efficacy in Interprofessional Collaborative Practice Among Health Care Science Students

AOTA Conference

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Creating the Healthiest Older Adult Population: Preparing the Future Geriatric Primary Care Workforce. American Public Health Association, PHA 2018 Annual Meeting & Expo, San Diego, CA. (submitted)

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Koronkowski, M., Peterson, E., Altfeld, S., Trocino, A., Transformative Education to Build the Geriatric Workforce: Lessons Learned from an Interprofessional Scholars   and Leaders Program. American Public Health Association, PHA 2018 Annual Meeting & Expo, San Diego, CA. (submitted)

Hasnain, M., Koronkowski, M., Gruss, V., Altfeld, S., Rajagopal, N., Torres, G., (Nov. 2018) Transforming Health Disparities through Interprofessional Education and Community-based Participatory Research. American Public Health Association, PHA 2018 Annual Meeting & Expo, San Diego, CA. (submitted)

Gruss, V. (May 2018) University of Illinois GWEP: Digital Innovations, AGS Annual Meeting Nurses Breakfast, American Geriatrics Society, 2018 Annual Scientific Meeting, Orlando, Florida

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M. (May 2018) Preparing the Future Geriatric Primary Care Workforce: An Online Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Program.  American Geriatrics Society, Conference, Orlando, FL.

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V. (May 2018) Transformative Education to Build the Interprofessional Primary Care Geriatrics Workforce.  American Geriatrics Society, Conference, Orlando, FL.

Gruss, V., Hasnain M. (May 2018) Preparing the Future Geriatric Primary Care Workforce: An Online Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Program. 51st Annual Spring Conference of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, Washington, DC.

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V. (May 2018) Campus-Community Partnership to Engage Older Adults in Participatory Health Education and Empowerment. 51st Annual Spring Conference of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, Washington, DC. [Seminar]

Gruss, V., Hasnain M. (May 2018) Digital Tools to Empower Clinicians and Learners in Interprofessional Geriatrics: Creating a Dementia Care Mobile App. 51st Annual Spring Conference of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, Washington, DC.

Kottorp, A., Keehn, M., Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Peterson, E. Validation of a scale to measure self-efficacy in interprofessional collaborative practice among health care sciences students. The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) Annual Conference and Expo, Salt Lake City, UT. April 2018.

Kottorp, A., Keehn, M., Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Peterson, E. Comparing self-efficacy in interprofessional collaborative practice among health care sciences students. The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) Annual Conference and Expo, Salt Lake City, UT. April 2018.

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V. Transforming Healthcare through Technology: ENGAGE-IL Online Accredited Training and Dementia App. Alzheimer’s Association Annual Research Symposium. Educate. Ignite. Integrate, Chicago IL., November, 2017

Gruss, V., Koronkowski, M., Hasnain, Connecting the Dots: Participatory Health Education and Empowerment Program with Community-Dwelling Older Adults, Gerontological Advanced Practice Nurses Association Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee, October 7, 2017

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Koronkowski, M.J., Peterson, E., Baccellieri, A., Transforming Health Professions Education to Build the Interprofessional Primary Care Geriatrics Workforce, American Geriatrics Society, Presidential Poster Session, San Antonio, Texas, May 18, 2017

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M.,   Koronkowski, M.J., Baccellieri, A., Transforming Healthcare with Mobile Devices: A “Dementia Guide” App for Persons with Dementia and Caregivers, American Geriatrics Society, Product Showcase, San Antonio, Texas, May 18, 2017

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Zarrieneh, A., Koronkowski, M.J., Baccellieri, A. Connecting the Dots: Participatory Health Education and Empowerment Program with Older Adults. American Geriatrics Society (AGS) Annual Scientific Meeting. San Antonio, TX. May, 2017

Barnes, S., Berg-Weger, M., Emery, E., Golden, R., Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Molony, J., Newman, M., Thompson K. Best Practices for Integrating Geriatrics into Primary Care: Working with CBOs and the Aging Network, ENGAGE-IL, American Society on Aging, Aging in America Conference, Chicago, Illinois, March 20, 2017

Zarrieneh, A., Gruss, V., Improving Self-Efficacy Among Community Dwelling Older Adults: An Educational Medication Management Intervention, American Society on Aging, Aging in American Conference, (poster), Chicago, Illinois, March 23, 2017

REGIONAL:
Tozer, C., Gruss, V., Keehn, M. Impact of an Interprofessional Education Immersion Experience on Undergraduate Nursing Students, Graduate Nursing Students and Third Year Medical Students. Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Scholarship Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, April 27, 2018.

Kottorp, A., Peterson, E., Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Keehn, M. Comparing Self-efficacy in Interprofessional Collaborative Practice Among Health Science Students, Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Scholarship Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, April 27, 2018.

Hasnain, M., Altfeld, S., Gruss, V., Hobbs, K., Jarrett, J., Koronkowski, M. Oyola, S., Perry, A., Rajagopal, N., Torres, G., Preparing the Future Health Workforce to Transform Health Disparities through Interprofessional Education and Community-Participatory Research   Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Scholarship Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, April 27, 2018.

Hasnain, M., Keehn, M., Gruss, V., Peterson, E., Kottorp, A., Development and Validation of a Tool to Measure Self-efficacy in Interprofessional Collaborative Practice. Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Scholarship Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, April 27, 2018.

 Kottorp, A., Keehn, M., Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Peterson, E. Validation of a Scale to Measure Self-Efficacy in Interprofessional Collaborative Practice Among Health Science Students, Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice Scholarship Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, April 27, 2018.

Gruss, V., Keynote Speaker, 24th Annual Nursing Research Council, Memorial Medical Center, Springfield, Illinois, scheduled for March 26, 2018

‡Mitzen, P., Kozak, B., Gruss, V., Hasnain, M. Martin, S., American Society on Aging, ASA Regional Event, ASA Chicagoland Roundtable, Sister Cities International Social Service Exchange to Optimize the Well-being of Older Adults in Chicago and Shanghai: Reflections from the 2017 Delegate, December 1, 2017

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M. Sexuality and the Older Adult, Illinois Medical Director’s Association, Annual Conference, Oakbrook, Illinois, September, 2017

Gruss, V., Partnering for Success”, UIC Training Institute Colbert-Williams Decree, Keynote, Provider Panel and Facilitator, Chicago, Illinois, September 14, 2017

Gruss, V. Dementia and Delirium, Illinois Department on Aging, Neurology Training, Chicago, Illinois, May 5, 2017

LOCAL:

Gruss, V. The LGBTQ Older Adult”, Chicagoland Gerontological Advance Practice Nurses Association, August, 2018

Gruss, V., “Clinical Approaches to the Dementia Patient”, Grand Rounds, Sinai Health Systems, Chicago, Illinois, May 17, 2018

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Developing the Future Geriatric Primary Care Workforce through Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Family Medicine, Scholarship Day 2018, May 23, 2018

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Transformative Health Professions Education in Geriatrics to Build the Interprofessional Primary Care Workforce, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Family Medicine, Scholarship Day 2018, May 23, 2018

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Empowering Clinicians, Patients and Caregivers: Creating a Dementia Care Mobile App, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Family Medicine, Scholarship Day 2018, May 23, 2018

Alam, B., Nagel, E., Ogunsile, O., Gruss, V., Healthcare Empowerment Workbooks for Residents at Pat Crowley House, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Family Medicine, Scholarship Day 2018, May 23, 2018

Hasnain, M., Altfeld, S., Chacko, R., Gruss, V., Hobbs, K., Jarrett, J., Koronkowski, M., Oyola, S., Perry, A., Rajagopal, N., Torres, G., Interprofessional Approaches to Health Disparities: Preparing the Future Health Workforce through Community-based Participatory Research,University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Family Medicine, Scholarship Day 2018, May 23, 2018

Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Keynote Address:  Interprofessional Approaches to Optimizing Health of Older Adults Across the Globe: The Chicago-Shanghai International Social Service Exchange. World Health Day Celebration, UIC, Chicago, Illinois April 2, 2018

Alam, B., Ogunsile, O., Nagel, E., Gruss, V., Healthcare Empowerment Workbooks for Residents at Pat Crowley House, poster, Interprofessional Approaches to Health Disparities Showcase, UIC, Chicago, Illinois, March 15, 2018

Gruss, V., Healers for Humanity, Panelist, University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Medicine, February 6, 2018

‡Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Research Summer Opportunities in Geriatrics, University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Medicine, October 30, 2017

Gruss, V., Dementia and Delirium, Illinois Department on Aging, Neurology Training, Chicago, Illinois, May 5, 2017

‡Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., Perry. A., Asmal, A., Transforming Health Professions Education and Practice in Geriatric Primary Care: The UIC ENGAGE-IL Journey, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Family Medicine, Scholarship Day, May 24, 2017

Gruss, V.,Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone”, University of Illinois at Chicago, Student Affairs, April 13, 2017

Research Currently in Progress

2018 Active Research Grants:

Gruss, V. (PI), and Hasnain, M. (Co-PI) Health Resources & Service Administration, Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), 2018-2019, $881,778.00 (one year)

Olsen, B., Gruss, V., Hasnain, M., Emery-Tiburicio, E., Miller, R., Health Resources & Service Administration, Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), Small Networking Meeting Grant Program, Assessment of Geriatric Interprofessional Training, 2018 $31,000 (6 months)

Gruss, V. (PI), and Hasnain, M. (Co-PI), Health Resources & Service Administration, Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), 2015-2018, $2,500,000 (3 years)- program extension for 2018

Hasnain, M., Gruss, V., (Co-PI) Innovative Geriatrics Program and Approaches to Care, HRSA, GWEP-CC $7,500

Leathers, S., Melka-Kaffer, C., McDermott, M., Mitchell, C., Brooks, E., Hasnain, M.,Gruss, V. Coats, B., Bonecutter. G., (co-investigator), M01HP31358-01-00 for Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training (BHWET) Program, Integrated Behavioral Health Care Training for Social Workers, HRSA, Sept. 30, 2017 – Sept. 29, 2021 $1,919,894 (3 years)

Intellectual Property

Gruss, V. (PI), Hasnain, M., Koronkowski, M. Mobile Software Application: “Dementia Guide Expert”. Mobile App, Spanish Version, available in iOS Apple App Store and for Android on Google Play (2018)

 Gruss, V. (PI), Hasnain, M., Koronkowski, M. Mobile Software Application: “Dementia Guide Expert for families”. Mobile App available in iOS Apple App Store and for Android on Google Play (2016)

 Gruss, V. (PI), Hasnain, M. (Co-PI), Online Accredited Learning in Interprofessional Geriatrics, online training modules for healthcare professionals. Available through website: engageil.com (2017)  

 Gruss, V. (PI). Mobile Software Application Patent: “Behavioral Symptoms of Dementia” downloadable App. Software registered at the Library of Congress by UIC Office of Technology Management. Invention Identification number DF092.   App is available in iOS Apple App Store and for Android at Google Play.  (2012)