National Institute on Aging shines spotlight on Andrea Gilmore-Bykovskyi’s efforts to improve the experiences of people living with dementia

Andrea Gilmore-Bykovskyi, PhD, RN
Andrea Gilmore-Bykovskyi, PhD, RN, is a leading clinician-scientist in brain health research and dementia care.

Andrea Gilmore Bykovskyi, PhD, RN, has always wanted to understand the human experience in health care. In her early clinical work at a skilled nursing facility, she recognized that despite system inadequacies, different approaches to care had a significant impact on residents.

She has devoted her career to improving the experiences of people living with dementia. With research training and early career support from NIA, she established a program exploring the experiences of patients with dementia and ways caregivers and healthcare staff provide support.

Gilmore-Bykovskyi is a thought leader on personhood in dementia research and care who has been supported by NIA with research training and early career awards, including a Paul B. Beeson Emerging Leaders Career Development Award in Aging. Her active, NIA R33-funded study explores lucidity, which is the unexpected return of communication and functional abilities in people with advanced dementia. It is the first prospective observational study to investigate the phenomenon.

A spotlight out this week recognizes Gilmore-Bykovskyi’s significant work to support people with dementia to speak for themselves by developing novel initiatives such as the Brain Health Community Registry, which engages people in research by connecting those living with dementia, caregivers, and individuals interested in brain health research with pertinent research opportunities on aging, brain health, and caregiving. The registry also connects interested participants to services that address social, medical, or caregiving needs.

Gilmore-Bykovskyi’s focus on bringing an inclusive view to science and public health “has inspired many investigators, both new and experienced, to think holistically about health and health care research conduct,” said Elena Fazio, PhD, director of NIA’s Office of AD/ADRD Strategic Coordination, who has worked with Gilmore-Bykovskyi on the summit and several grants.

“I want to pay close attention to what people living with dementia are telling us,” Gilmore-Bykovskyi said. “That lived experience is a key missing piece in many scientific puzzles.”

Read the NIA spotlight online

Andrea Gilmore-Bykovskyi, PhD, RN, is the Associate Vice Chair of Research and Associate Professor with Tenure at the BerbeeWalsh Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. She is a recipient of a 2023 University of Wisconsin–Madison Outstanding Woman of Color Award, co-chaired NIA’s 2023 Dementia Care Summit, and has several active NIA grants. Explore her research at