Dr. Heehyul Moon

Associate Professor

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At some point in our lives, we will all be either caregivers or care recipients.

Dr. Moon, a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, is a social worker and gerontologist who received her Ph.D. from the Case Western Reserve University and completed her NIH-funded postdoctoral training (T32) in dementia care and community-based participatory research in racial and ethnic minority groups from the Carolina Program on Health and Aging Research (CPHAR) at the University of North Carolina –Chapel Hill. Dr. Moon’s research has focused on health disparities, service utilization, and dementia caregiving among diverse racial/ethnic populations. Her research goal is to improve racially and culturally marginalized older adults and their caregivers' health through enhancing coping skills and health behaviors. Dr. Moon is an author of more than 30 peer-reviewed journal publications and has given more than 70 professional talks locally, nationally, and internationally.

Her research has been funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (2016-2017), the Korean American Social Work Educator Association (2018-2019), the National Institute on Aging to the Native Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Center for Minority Aging Research (NAD RCMAR, 2020-2022), and the Alzheimer’s’ Association (2023-2026), in addition to multiple internal grants. 

Dr. Moon’s current Alzheimer’s’ Association-funded project is to investigate the psychosocial and cultural factors associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias (ADRD) screening intention among members of the Yankton Sioux Tribe (YST) to provide a strong, evidence-based foundation for developing effective ADRD care interventions tailored for the YST that can be applied to other high-risk American Indian communities. In addition, Dr. Moon is actively engaged in multiple ongoing research on disparities in cognitive and mental health among racially and culturally marginalized populations using local and nationally representative data. 

Dr. Moon, in collaboration with Dr. Rote, has recently conducted studies to investigate coping strategies and barriers in dementia care among African American family caregivers in Kentucky and to determine the service needs and preferences of dementia caregivers in Kentucky.