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Kelly Wierenga

School of Nursing

Expert Bio

Kelly Wierenga is a new and early-stage investigator focused on improving emotional and physical self-management among people recovering from a new life-threatening disease or illness such as myocardial infarction or COVID-19. This work is accomplished through design and testing of her novel intervention, which teaches participants effective emotion-regulation strategies.

Wierenga’s research builds on extensive clinical background and combines basic, clinical and translational science to improve patient outcomes. As PI and MPI, she has experience in cardiovascular and COVID-19 research patient-focused studies and disseminating findings. Her interdisciplinary collaboration includes scientists from nursing, medicine, biostatistics, neuroscience, psychology, art and design.

Her previous work has culminated in the development and testing of a theory-based emotion-regulation intervention tailored to the needs of adults following a first cardiac event. This intervention is positioned to have broad impact on health-promoting behaviors, as it is tailored to varied patient populations.

Areas of Expertise

Emotion regulation, depression, anxiety, cardiac rehabilitation, COVID-19, intervention design, illness perceptions, physical activity, myocardial infarction.