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Campaign for Action leader receives honor

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) announced its senior adviser for nursing, Susan B. Hassmiller, PhD, RN, FAAN, has been elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), widely held to be one of the highest individual honors in the fields of health and medicine.

Hassmiller, who shapes and leads RWJF's strategies to transform the nursing profession to improve health and healthcare, is among 70 new members and 10 "foreign associates recognized for outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service," according to IOM.

"Susan Hassmiller is an exceptional asset to the foundation and to the field of healthcare," said Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, MD, MBA, president and CEO of RWJF, the nation's largest healthcare philanthropy. "We are thrilled that the Institute of Medicine has recognized her for something the foundation has long known: that she exemplifies the qualities of leadership that will promote a culture of health and make the United States a healthier nation."

Hassmiller joined RWJF in 1997. In partnership with AARP, she directs the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, which is leading a nationwide effort to transform nursing in order to improve healthcarein the U.S. The Campaign for Action is implementing recommendations from the landmark 2010 IOM report The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health, for which she served as study director. The Campaign's goal is that everyone in America can live a healthier life, supported by a system in which nurses are essential partners in providing care and promoting health.

Hassmiller's background includes extensive involvement with the Red Cross; public health positions at the local, state and national levels; and academic positions at the University of Nebraska and George Mason University. Hassmiller is the 2009 recipient of the Florence Nightingale Medal, the highest international honor given to a nurse by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

"It's always an honor to work with the Institute of Medicine in any capacity," says Hassmiller. "To be elected to membership and join a roster of so many esteemed colleagues is nothing short of humbling, and incredibly exciting. I am grateful to the IOM for this recognition, and I look forward to new opportunities to move healthcare forward."

Hassmiller is one of 70 new members and 10 foreign associates during IOM's 43rd annual meeting.

New members are elected by current active members through a selective process that recognizes individuals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, healthcare, and public health.

A diversity of talent among IOM's membership is assured by the Institute's charter, which stipulates that at least one-quarter of the membership is selected from outside the health professions, for example, from such fields as the law, engineering, social sciences, and the humanities.

The newly-elected members raise IOM's total active membership to 1,753 and the number of foreign associates to 120. With an additional 93 members holding emeritus status, IOM's total membership is 1,966.

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