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U-M School of Nursing researcher wins $350,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—AkkeNeel Talsma, an assistant professor of nursing business and health systems at the University of Michigan School of Nursing, is one of 15 winners of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's inaugural Nurse Faculty Scholar award.

The three-year, $350,000 grant begins Sept. 1 and will support Talsma's study of operating-room nurses. She will investigate how staffing numbers, training levels and operating-room interruptions contribute to nursing actions that affect patient outcomes.

"A lot of attention has been focused on addressing medical errors, but we really haven't investigated the role of operating-room nurses and patient outcomes," Talsma said.

Talsma's faculty mentors for the project are Dr. Darrell Campbell, chief of clinical affairs at the University of Michigan Health System, and Joanne Pohl, associate dean for community partnerships at the School of Nursing.

"We are indeed honored that the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has selected Dr. Talsma as one of the few distinctive recipients of this prestigious award," said Dean Kathleen Potempa of the School of Nursing.

"This is a testament to the foundation's unyielding commitment to support the progress of stellar junior faculty as they develop scholarly excellence in critical areas of scientific nursing research," Potempa said.

The goal of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nursing Faculty Scholars program is to develop the next generation of national leaders in academic nursing through career-development awards to outstanding junior nursing faculty. The Nursing Faculty Scholars program is run by the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation's largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to improving the health and health care of all Americans, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, meaningful and timely change. For more than 35 years the Foundation has brought experience, commitment, and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those it serves. When it comes to helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need, the Foundation expects to make a difference in your lifetime. For more information, visit

Nurse Faculty Scholars