Brooke Hollister, PhD

Assistant Professor of Sociology
UC San Francisco

UCSF Faculty Profile
Key Areas: aging, health and social policy

Brooke Hollister’s research and teaching focus on health and social policy issues around aging, including: long term care, Social Security, Medicare, Alzheimer’s disease support and services, disability, mental health, care transitions, and the use of mobile and broadband technology to promote health and wellness in older adults. She has over 12 years of experience conducting research on aging health and social policy issues using qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods in community-based participatory research and program evaluation. Her research is funded by NIH, the US Administration for Community Living, the California Department of Public Health and the SCAN foundation.

GBHI presents an opportunity to build a cadre of future experts in brain health and dementia who are prepared to engage with and influence policy on local, national, international, and global levels.

Hollister is the head of several research projects aimed at evaluating and improving support services for older adults, patients with dementia, and their caregivers. She leads research efforts to evaluate Cal MediConnect, the Coordinated Care Initiative in California. Cal MediConnect coordinates care for California residents who are dually-eligible for Medicare and MediCal (California’s Medicaid program) through contract with private health plans. The evaluation seeks to document the impact of Cal MediConnect on dually eligible beneficiaries’ experiences with care, including access, quality, and coordination. Hollister is also the principle investigator of the Cal MediConnect Dementia Project, which trains care managers of health plans and delegated entities to be more dementia capable in serving members and their caregivers. The project has already helped initiate positive systems level changes within health plans, such as the adoption of cognitive screening practices recommended by the Alzheimer’s Association.

Hollister’s other projects include an NIH funded evaluation of the effectiveness of case management problem solving therapy and self-guided problem solving therapy for depressed older adults living in a rural community. She has also partnered with Alzheimer’s organizations across the state of California and the California Department of Aging to design and evaluate programs to enhance systems of supportive services for people with developmental disabilities and dementia, people living alone with dementia, and people with dementia in need of help to manage behavioral symptoms. 

At GBHI, Hollister leads the policy curriculum, which includes the development of policy campaign toolkits targeting important dementia and brain health policy issues identified by the Atlantic Fellows.

Bio: Brooke Hollister is an assistant professor in the Institute for Health & Aging at the University of California, San Francisco. She earned her PhD in Sociology from UCSF in 2008. Hollister was a 2012–13 Atlantic Philanthropies Health and Aging Policy Fellow and an American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow with a placement in Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi’s office in Washington, DC where she worked on a variety of health policy issues, including the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and the design of the financial alignment initiative for dual eligibility in California. She was the vice chair of the Gray Panthers National Board of Directors from 2007-2012 and she currently serves on the board of the American Society on Aging.