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Dr. Jeannie Cimiotti of the College of Nursing To Be Inducted As A Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing In October 2013

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 Dr. Jeannie P. Cimiotti, DNSc, RN, of Philadelphia, PA, associate professor of the College of Nursing and executive director, New Jersey Collaborating Center for Nursing (NJCCN), was formally notified last week of her selection as Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN). The induction ceremony will be held in October 2013, during the 40th National Meeting and Conference of the American Academy of Nursing at the Hyatt Regency Hotel on Capitol Hill, Washington DC.

Cimiotti is the first researcher to establish compelling evidence that poor hospital practice environments and associated nurse burnout undermine best practices for infection prevention.  Her recent publication in the American Journal of Infection Control received extensive media coverage, showing that her work is getting through to the public, healthcare administrators, and practitioners (Cimiotti et al., 2012).  Findings from her research showing higher rates of infection associated with nurse burnout provide significant support that healthcare organizations need to continue to improve work environments to better patient care outcomes and staff satisfaction.

Her scholarship impacts her focus as executive director of the NJCCN, established by the New Jersey Legislature as a primary source for data-based evidence to formulate reliable health policy that has a positive impact on nursing care, nursing education, and patient outcomes. The Center studies and analyzes healthcare workforce issues and provides recommendations to the New Jersey governor and legislature on policy affecting healthcare workforce.

According to Dr. Linda L. Aiken, Claire M. Fagin Leadership Professor of Nursing & Sociology, and Director, Center for Health Outcomes Policy Research, University of Pennsylvania, Cimiotti’s research agenda “is innovative in ways that open up whole new areas of inquiry.” Aiken adds that Cimiotti’s first authored paper in the Journal for Healthcare Quality (Cimiotti, 2012) examines nursing resources for hospitalized children in 3 types of hospital arrangements:  pediatric units in general hospitals, pediatric hospitals in larger hospital systems, and freestanding children’s hospitals.  She finds that freestanding children’s hospitals have significantly better nursing resources in terms of staffing and nurses’ education, as well as significantly improve practice environments. This research then sets the stage for subsequent analyses to determine the extent to which nursing explains better outcomes in freestanding children’s hospitals which have generally been attributed to specialty physicians (Cimiotti, 2012).  

Cimiotti is one of the few workforce researchers who are testing models to determine interactions among types of nursing resources and patient outcomes, which will contribute to comparative effectiveness conclusions.  Examples of this work include the following findings:  improved nurse staffing in hospitals with poor work environments has no effect on patient outcomes but a larger than expected effect when work environments are good; and nurse specialty certification is associated with lower hospital mortality but only among nurses with bachelor’s education.   

The American Academy of Nursing, an independent affiliate of the American Nurses Association, was established in 1973 to help advance the profession of nursing through health policy and practice by generating, synthesizing and disseminating nursing knowledge. The members of the Academy, referred to as Fellows, are invited from various sectors of the healthcare industry and nursing, with roles in management, academia, clinical practice, and research. These Fellows are distinguished in their respective areas of expertise, as well as visionaries in coursing the future direction of nursing as a profession and discipline. Being selected as a Fellow is considered a very distinctive honor in the nursing discipline, as inductees become part of the select core of nursing leaders that take responsibility to advance the status of nursing.

The College of Nursing, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, has campuses in Newark and New Brunswick, offering generic, accelerated and RN-BS baccalaureate programs, BS to DNP, BS to PhD, and post-Master doctorates (Doctor of Nursing Practice and Doctor of Philosophy).

For more information, please contact Edmund JY Pajarillo, PhD, RN BC, CPHQ, NEA BC, Associate Dean for Faculty Services, 180 University Avenue, Ackerson Hall 368, Newark, NJ, 07102 at edmund.pajarillo@rutgers.edu or 973-353-5418. For information about the Rutgers, College of Nursing and its programs, visit https://nursing.rutgers.edu.