Mi-Kyung Song

Mi-Kyung Song

Professor, tenured, Fuld Palliative Care Center Director | Edith Honeycutt Endowed Chair in Nursing | PhD, RN, FAAN


Mi-Kyung Song is a Professor, tenured, and received her PhD in Nursing (focused area in end-of-life and palliative care) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with minor in Biostatistics. Before joining Emory, she was a faculty member at the University of Pittsburgh and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Areas of Expertise

Acute and Chronic Care
Caregiver Well Being
Gerontology And Elder Health
Health Services Research
Palliative Care
Symptom Science
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Song, M.K., Paul, S., Ward, S.E., Gilet, C.A., & Hladik, G.A. (in press). One-year linear trajectories of self-reported symptoms, physical functioning, cognitive functioning, emotional well-being, and spiritual well-being among patients on dialysis. American Journal of Kidney Diseases.

Song, M.K., Unruh, M., Manatunga, A., Plantinga, L., Lea, J., Jhamb, M., Kshirsagar, A.V., & Ward. S.E. (2017). SPIRIT trial: A phase III pragmatic trial of an advance care planning intervention in ESRD, Contemporary Clinical Trials. PMID: 28993286

Head, B.A., Song, M.K., Wiencek, C., Nevidjon, B., Fraser, D., Mazanec, P. (in press). Palliative nursing summit-nurses leading changes and transforming care: Nursing’s role in communication and advance care planning. Journal of Hospice & Palliative Nursing

Hanson, L.C., Zimmerman, S., Song, M.K., Lin, F-C., Rosemond, C., Carey, T., & Mitchell, S. (2017). Effect of the goals of care intervention for advanced dementia: A randomized clinical trial. JAMA-Internal Medicine, 177(1), 24-31. PMID: 27893884; PMCID: PMC5234328

Song, M.K., DeVito Dabbs, A., & Ward, S.E. (2016). A SMART design to optimize interventions for patients and family caregiver outcomes. Nursing Outlook, 64(4), 299-305. PMID:27264454

DeVito Dabbs, A., Song, M.K., Mayers, B., Li, R., & Dew, M.A. (2016). A randomized controlled trial of a mobile health technology to promote self-management after lung transplantation. American Journal of Transplantation, 16(7), 2172-80. PMID: 26729617; PMCID: PMC4925283

Song, M.K., Ward, S.E., Fine, J.P., Hanson, L.C., Lin, F-C., Hladik, G.A., Hamilton, J.B., & Bridgman, J.C. (2015). Advance care planning and end-of-life decision making in dialysis: A randomized controlled trial targeting patients and their surrogates. American Journal of Kidney Diseases. 66(5), 813-22. PMID: 26141307; PMCID: PMC Journal – In Process

Song, M.K., & Ward, S.E. (2015). Making visible a theory-guided advance care planning intervention. Journal of Nursing Scholarship. 47(5), 389-96. PMID: 26219616; PMCID: PMC Journal – In Process


Dr. Song has taught nursing ethics at all levels, including a doctoral seminar, Ethics and Law in Healthcare and Research, instrumentation and measurement, theory-based intervention development and testing.

Dr. Song is a Co-Director of a T32 Research Training on Improving Outcomes in Chronic Conditions funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research.


Dr. Song's research is focused on improving end-of-life and palliative care for patients with serious multiple chronic illnesses (e.g., patients with advanced chronic kidney disease and post-lung transplant recipients with chronic rejection) and their family members. Specifically, her research areas of interest are end-of-life communication, treatment decision making, surrogate decision making, integration of palliative care, and bioethics. Her methodological areas of interest include intervention development and testing, treatment fidelity, clinical trials, and mixed methods in intervention program of research.

Preparation for End-of-Life Decision Making in Mild Alzheimer’s Disease (Song, M.K.)

NIH/NIA, R01AG057714

Total costs: $3M

Funding period:2017-2022

An Effectiveness-Implementation Trial of SPIRIT in ESRD (Song, M.K.)

NIH/NINR R01NR017018

Total costs: $3.4M

Funding period:2017-2022

Informal Caregiving Networks for Dementia Superimposed on Complex Multimorbidity (Song, M.K.)

Principal Investigator


Total costs:$357,593

Funding period:2018-2022



2019 Distinguished Researcher Award, Southern Nursing Research Society

2018 International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame, Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society