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Joan Nelson, DNP, RN

Associate Professor

Joan Nelson

Joan Nelson is an adult nurse practitioner with a practice and research focus in geriatrics and population management. She has worked with the older adult population since 1997 and has numerous publications on geriatric topics.  As an adult nurse practitioner, Nelson provides primary care both in the clinic and in the homes of homebound patients in the Sheridan Health Center catchment area.  She is active in directing and managing several quality-improvement projects and is a site evaluator for CCNE.

Nelson earned her bachelor of science degree in biochemistry from Metropolitan State College in Denver and her master of science as an adult nurse practitioner, her ND and her DNP from the University of Colorado.

Degree Awarding Institution Field of Study Graduation Date
DNP University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO Nursing 2006
ND University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO Nursing 1997
MS University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO Adult Nurse Practitioner 1997
BS Metropolitan State College, Denver, CO Biochemistry 1979
Title Organization Year
Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching University of Colorado Denver Graduate School, College of Nursing 2015
Dean's Teaching Award University of Colorado Denver 2007
Chancellor's Teaching Recognition Award University of Colorado Denver Graduate School, College of Nursing 2003
  1. Nelson, J. M. & Rosenthal, L. (2015). Keeping Patients from Falling through the Cracks: Nurses Play a Critical Role in Reducing Hospital Readmissions. American Nurse Today, 10 (5). Accessed 7/6/15 at
  2. Nelson, J. M. & Pulley, A. Transitional Care to Reduce Hospital Readmissions (2015). American Nurse Today 10, (4). Accessed 7/6/15 at
  3. Nelson, J. M. & Good, E. (August, 2015). Urinary tract infections and asymptomatic bacteriuria in older adults. The Nurse Practitioner.
  4. Nelson, J. M., & Nelson, T. (2014). Advance directives: Struggles and strategies. The Nurse Practitioner, 39, 11, 34-40. 
  5. Nelson, J. M. (2014). Geriatric Pharmacology. In Woo, T., Robinson, ML (Eds.), Pharmacotherapeutics for Nurse Practitioner Providers. 
  6. Nelson, J. M. (2014). Identifying and preventing common risk factors in the elderly. In Kris Mauk (Ed.), Gerontological Nursing: Competencies for Care.(3rd Ed.) Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett. 
  7. Nelson, J. M., Cook, P. F., & Raterink, G. (2013). The evolution of a DNP capstone process: Programmatic revisions to improve the quality of student projects. Journal of Professional Nursing, 29, (6), 370-380.
  8. Hastings-Tolsma, M., Matthews, E., Nelson, J., & Schmiege, S. (2013). Comparative Effectiveness Research: Nursing Science and Health Care Delivery. Western Journal of Nursing Research, 35, (6), 682-702. DOI: 10.1177/0193945912474501. 
  9. Nelson, J. M., & Cook, P. F. (2013). Utility of the Theory of Planned Behavior to Predict Nursing Staff Blood Pressure Monitoring Behaviors. Journal of Clinical Nursing, doi: 10.1111/jocn.12183.
  10. Nelson, J. M. (2012). Quality Improvement for Case Managers. Case Management Body of Knowledge (CMBOK). Commission for Case Manager Certification Accessed at 
  11. Nelson, J. M., & Robinson, M. L. (2012). Hyponatremia in older adults presenting to the emergency department. International Journal of Emergency Nursing. 
  • PI, Utility of the theory of planned behavior to predict nursing staff blood pressure monitoring behaviors, Kaiser Permanente.  (12/08-6/10).
  • PI, Diabetes Management of frail, older adults, Kaiser Permanente. (3/1/06-8/1/07).
  • Joan Nelson works as a nurse practitioner in a geriatric practice where she provides clinical supervision to nurse practitioner students.