Pamela Saunders

Pamela A. Saunders, PhD
Associate Professor
Chief Director, Doctoring Curriculum
co-Director, Geriatrics Clerkship
Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry
Georgetown University School of Medicine

Research Interests

Language, Communication, Doctor-Patient Interaction, Communication Training of Clinicians, Students, and Caregivers, Dementia, Medical Education, Narrative Medicine

Research Summary

My research at Georgetown has focused on the interaction between people in the clinical setting. I explore the communication behaviors of both the clinician and the patient in constructing the clinical encounter. I am interested in exploring how training providers to communicate better with their patients.

Representative Publications
  • de Medeiros K, Saunders S., Sabat S. (2011). Introduction to the special issue. Dementia. First published on October 20, 2011 as doi:10.1177/1471301211421062.
  • Saunders P, de Medeiros K, Doyle P. (2011). The discourse of friendship: Mediators of communication among dementia residents in long term care. Dementia. First published online, November 20, 2011, as: DOI: 10.1177/1471301211421187
  • de Medeiros K, Saunders P, Doyle P, A Mosby, K Van Haitsma. (2011). The meaning of friendship among people with dementia. Dementia. First published online, September 20, 2011, as doi:10.1177/1471301211421186.
  • Doyle P, de Medeiros K, Saunders P. (2011). Nested social groups within the social environment of a dementia care assisted living facility. Dementia. First published online, September 20, 2011 as doi:10.1177/1471301211421188.
  • MacLaughlin, B, W., Wang, D, Noone, A.M., Liu, N, Harazduk, N, Lumpkin, M, Haramati, A, Saunders, PA, Dutton, MA, Amri H: Stress Biomarkers in Medical Students Participating in a Mind Body Medicine Skills Program. Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2011.
  • Saunders, PA, de Medeiros, K, Bartell, A: "Oh He Was Forgettable": Construction of Self Identity through Use of Communicative Coping Behaviors in the Discourse of Persons with Cognitive Impairment. . Dementia: The International Journal of Social Research and Practice, 10(3), 2011.
  • Saunders, PA, Tractenberg, R, Chaterji, R, Amri H, Harazduk N, Gordon, J, Lumpkin, M, Haramati, A. Promoting self-awareness and reflection through an experiential Mind-Body Skills course for first year medical students. Medical Teacher, 29:778-784, 2007.
  • Saunders, PA, Aisen P, S. Geriatrics Curriculum at Georgetown University School of Medicine. Special issue of Academic Medicine, 79, S45-S50, 2004.
  • Saunders, PA. "My brain's on strike": The construction of identity through memory accounts by dementia patients. Research on Aging, 20:65-90, 1998.
  • Saunders, PA. "You're out of your mind!" An analysis of humor as a face saving strategy for patients and clinicians during neuropsychological examinations, Health Communication 10:357-372, 1998.