Dr. Kurtz works to improve communication practices in health care and education. She also develops evidence-based curricula and methods for teaching, learning and evaluating communication skills. The development of her communication program is based upon building teams to bridge diverse cultures. The teams collaborate on conflict management in education, medicine, law, and business.
She is an international partner and invited founding member of the International Centre for Communication in Healthcare at Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
Medical and veterinary professionals, educators, and students around the world have sought her expertise as a consultant to help them establish effective communication programs throughout their practices. She serves as an advisor or consulting member to a variety of health care institutes and task forces in the U.S. and Canada and has been involved in international development projects related to health care in Nepal, Southeast Asia, and South Africa. Since 1998, Professor Kurtz has been a driving force behind four International Conferences on Communication in Veterinary Medicine.
She is Professor Emerita at the University of Calgary in Alberta, where she directed the undergraduate communication curriculum in the Faculty of Medicine. She has served as a visiting scholar at institutions worldwide.
Her co-authored books on communication skills in the medical arena have earned widespread recognition. Her articles include many discussing topics of participatory education and participatory development.
Dr. Kurtz is the Nestle-Purina Professor in Veterinary Clinical Communication and founding director of the Clinical Communication Program for veterinarians and veterinary students in WSU's College of Veterinary Medicine and in the Paul G. Allen School for Global Animal Health. She is also a member of the WSU Association for Faculty Women.