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In January 2012, the Alliance for Nursing Informatics (ANI) selected two individuals to participate in an exclusive 2-year program designed to develop professionals capable of assuming national leadership positions in informatics-related organizations. Based on competitive criteria, Sarah A. Collins, PhD, RN, and Audrey L. Hirsch, MS, RN, have been tapped to participate in the Nursing Informatics Emerging Leaders Program.


ANI and the Nursing Informatics Emerging Leaders Program are jointly supported by the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) and the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).


The program provides emerging leaders with invaluable mentorship and opportunities to attend educational industry meetings and events. To succeed in the program, emerging leaders are required to (1) complete a nursing informatics leadership project; (2) attend meetings of the ANI governing directors; (3) participate in the HIMSS Annual Conference & Exhibition (February 20-24, 2012), including the Nursing Informatics Symposium; and (4) participate in the AMIA Annual Symposium (November 3-7, 2012).


Sarah Collins serves as a nurse informaticist at Partners Healthcare Systems in the Clinical Informatics Research and Development Department and as an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Division of General Internal Medicine and Primary Care. Before starting at Partners, she was a National Library of Medicine postdoctoral research fellow at Columbia University's Department of Biomedical Informatics, and she completed her PhD at Columbia University's School of Nursing as a National Institute of Nursing Research predoctoral informatics trainee. She will be mentored by Dana Alexander, vice president and chief nursing officer at GE Health Care IT Solutions, and Jacqueline Moss, associate professor and chair at the School of Nursing University of Alabama.


Alexander described the Emerging Leaders Program as "critical to meet the growing demand for nursing informatics leaders needed for the transformation of nursing through technology."

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Audrey Hirsch works as the clinical content manager for Bon Secours Health System's electronic health record implementation. She's a family nurse practitioner who has practiced in the emergency department, ICU, and in ambulatory care with a focus in cardiology. Hirsch will be mentored by Susan Hull, vice president of business, consortium, and international strategies at Elsevier/CPM Resource Center, and Joyce Sensmeier, vice president of informatics at HIMSS.


"Developing leaders who will have a substantial impact on the field of nursing informatics in healthcare policy, health system innovations, informatics education, or research is what this emerging leader program is all about," Hull said. "The participants will have the opportunity to deepen their leadership and strategic depth with the synergy of their local action project along with exposure to national nursing informatics leadership activities through ANI."

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ANI is cosponsored by AMIA and HIMSS to represent nursing informatics with a unified voice, while providing synergy and structure needed to advance the efforts of nursing informatics professionals in improving delivery of patient care. ANI represents more than 5000 nurses, brings together 26 district nursing informatics groups, and integrates nurses from a broad swath of academia, practice, industry, and a variety of specialty areas, working collaboratively with nearly 3 million nurses who currently practice in the United States today. Visit the ANI Web site for more information.



AMIA, the leading professional association for informatics professionals, serves as the voice of the nation's top biomedical and health informatics professionals and plays an important role in medicine, healthcare, and science, encouraging the use of data, information, and knowledge to improve both human health and delivery of healthcare services. More about AMIA is online at



HIMSS is a cause-based, not-for-profit organization exclusively focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of information technology and management systems for the betterment of healthcare. Founded 50 years ago, HIMSS and its related organizations are headquartered in Chicago with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia. HIMSS represents more than 38 000 individual members, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental, and not-for-profit organizations. HIMSS also includes over 540 corporate members and more than 120 not-for-profit organizations that share our mission of transforming healthcare through the effective use of information technology and management systems. HIMSS frames and leads healthcare practices and public policy through its content expertise, professional development, research initiatives, and media vehicles designed to promote information and management systems' contributions to improving the quality, safety, access, and cost-effectiveness of patient care. To learn more about HIMSS and to find out how to join us and our members in advancing our cause, please visit our Web site at


For more information, contact Kim Coghill, 301-657-1291 X120,; or Joyce Lofstrom, 312-915-9237,