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Vourlekis, Betsy Schaefer, Ph.D.

Betsy Schaefer Vourlekis, Ph.D. is professor emeritus of social work at the University of Maryland School of Social Work. She received her B.A. from Harvard University, majoring in East Asian History, M.S.W. from Columbia University, and Ph.D. in Human Development from the University of Maryland, College Park. She practiced psychiatric social work at St. Elizabeths Hospital, Washington, DC, and was staff director for Health and Mental Health at the National Association of Social Workers prior to joining Maryland’s faculty in 1988. She served on the NIMH Task Force on Social Work Research (1988-1991) and chaired the follow-up National Implementation Committee (1991-1993). She was the project consultant and field researcher for NASW’s Clinical Indicator Guideline project that developed quality improvement monitoring indicators for social work/psychosocial services in medical and psychiatric hospitals, nursing homes, hospice care, dialysis centers, and home health agencies. She has worked extensively with health and mental health social work groups to design internal program evaluation tools that improve visibility and accountability for their practice. She was co-principle investigator on intervention research projects testing case management to improve adherence to diagnostic follow-up and adjuvant treatment in breast and cervical cancer screening and treatment, funded by the CDC and the NIH’s National Cancer Institute. Her historical research focuses on social work in the mental health arena.

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