Suzanne Bakken sitting at a desk

Professor Bakken named IOM Nurse Scholar in Residence

(NEW YORK, NY, September 1, 2015) Suzanne Bakken, PhD, RN, FAAN, FACMI has been chosen as the 2015-2016 Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in Residence at the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academies.


She is the Alumni Professor of Nursing and Professor of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia University School of Nursing. A member of the Institute of Medicine since 2006, Bakken also currently co-directs the Center for Evidence-based Practice in the Underserved, as well as the predoctoral and postdoctoral training program, Reducing Health Disparities through Informatics (RHeaDI). 


The IOM Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in-Residence program was initiated in 1992 to provide a year-long leadership opportunity for a nurse leader to participate in shaping health policy. The program is supported by the American Academy of Nursing, the American Nurses Association, and the American Nurses Foundation.


Bakken applies informatics theories, methods, and technologies and participatory research approaches to address the health issues of underserved populations, with a goal of promoting health and reducing health disparities. Her research interests include data and information visualization, tailored health communication, and precision medicine.


The Center for Evidence-Based Practice in the Underserved, for example, specializes in the use of informatics for reducing health care disparities by assembling a databank of more than 6,000 members of the predominately Hispanic community living in the Washington Heights/Inwood neighborhoods of northern Manhattan. Among the applications of the data will be to create a more complete picture of the health status of community members.


“For more than 25 years Suzanne’s work has had a seminal impact on the field of informatics and how it can be used to reduce health care disparities,” commented Bobbie Berkowitz, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean of Columbia University School of Nursing. “This distinguished honor will enable Suzanne to further her goal to improve health outcomes by applying big data science in the policy arena.”


Bakken completed her doctoral degree in Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco, followed by a National Library of Medicine postdoctoral fellowship in Medical Informatics at Stanford University. She received the Pathfinder Award from the Friends of the National Institute of Nursing Research in 2010 and is also an elected fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Nursing and the American College of Medical Informatics. 

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