faculty profile

Patricia Sengstack   DNP, RN-BC, FAAN, FACMI

Senior Associate Dean for Nursing Informatics
Director, Nursing Informatics; Professor


Dr. Sengstack is a Professor for the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing with a secondary appointment in the Department of Biomedical Informatics. She teaches informatics at the masters and doctoral levels. She serves as a Nursing Informatics Consultant for the Vanderbilt University Medical Center. She is the former Chief Nursing Informatics Officer for the Bon Secours Health System. Prior to that, she served for nine years as the Chief of Clinical Informatics at the National Institutes of Health, Clinical Center in Bethesda, MD. She has her DNP from Vanderbilt University and a Post-Master's in Nursing Informatics from the University of Maryland. She is a Past President of the American Nursing Informatics Association and has multiple informatics publications. She has been inducted as a fellow into both the American Academy of Nursing and the American College of Medical Informatics. Her focus over the last several years has been health information technology's impact on patient safety as well as building a program to improve the evaluation process of IT systems.


  • DNP, Vanderbilt University School of Nursing
  • Post-Masters in Informatics, University of Maryland Baltimore
  • MS, University of Maryland Baltimore
  • BSN, University of Maryland Baltimore

Current Research/Scholarly Interests

  • Reducing the documentation burden for nurses in the electronic health record
  • Optimization of clinical systems to improve patient safety
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of clinical decision support in an electronic health record
  • Developing informatics structures and processes to support a geographically disperse integrated healthcare delivery system
  • Addressing EHR safety and the configuration to improve patient safety

Academic Interests

  • Nursing and Health Care Informatics

Representative Publications


Yin, Z., Jiu, Y., McCoy, A., Malin, B. & Sengstack, P. (2021). Contribution of Free-Text Comments to the Burden of Documentation: Assessment and Analysis of Vital Sign Comments in Flowsheets. Journal of Medical Internet Research. Vol. 23(3). DOI: 10.2196/22806, Available on-line: https://www.jmir.org/2021/3/e22806/

Swietlik, M. & Sengstack, P. (2020). An Evaluation of Nursing Admission Assessment Documentation to Identify Opportunities for Burden Reduction. Journal of Informatics Nursing. Vol. 5(3), 6 - 11.

Sengstack, P., Adrian, B., Boyd, D., Davis, A., Hook, M., Hulett, S., Karp, E., Kennedy, R., Heermann, L. & Niblett, T. (2020). The Six Domains of Burden: A Conceptual Framework to Address the Burden of Documentation in the Electronic Health Record. Position Paper of the American Nursing Informatics Association Board of Directors. Available on-line: https://www.ania.org/about-us/position-statements/six-domains-burden-conceptual-framework-address-bu...

Kiepek, W. & Sengstack, P (2019). An Evaluation of System End-User Support during Implementation of an Electronic Health Record Using the Model for Improvement Framework. Journal of Applied Clinical Informatics. 10:964?971

Horvath, K., Sengstack, P., Opelka, F., Borondy Kitts, A., Basch, P., Hoyt, D., Ommaya, A., Cipriano, P., Kawamoto, K., Paz, H. & Overhage, J.M. (2018). The Person-Centered Health Information System: Vision and Call to Action. National Academy of Medicine Discussion Paper. NAM, Washington DC.

Kannry, J., Sengstack, P., Thyvalikakath, T., Poikonen, J., Middleton, B., Payne, T. & Lehmann, C. (2016). The Chief Clinical Informatics Officer (CCIO): AMIA Task Force Report on CCIO Knowledge, Education, and Skillset Requirements. Applied Clinical Informatics, 7(1):143-76.

Richardson, K., Sengstack, P., Doucette, J., Hammond, W., Schertz, M., Thompson, J. & Johnson, C. (2016). Evaluation of Nursing Documentation Completion of Stroke Patients in the Emergency Department: A Pre-Post Analysis Using Flowsheet Templates and Clinical Decision Support. CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing, 34(2):62-70.

Book Chapters

Sengstack, P. (2018) Nursing Informatics. Chapter 20 in Taylor, C., Lillis, C, & Lynn, P. (2017), 9th ed. Fundamentals of Nursing: The Art and Science of Nursing Care. pp. 484-505. Wolters Kluver Publishing, Philadelphia.

Sengstack, P. (2018). Tips and Advice for Obtaining your First Nursing Informatics Job. In Introduction to Nursing Informatics Evolution and Innovation. 2nd Ed. pp. 133 - 146. CRC Press, HIMSS, Chicago.

Sengstack, P. (2016). Information System Lifecycles in Health Care. Chapter 12 in Finnell, J.T. & Dixon, B.E. (eds.) Clinical Informatics Study Guide. Springer Publishing. New York.


Sengstack, P. & Boicey, C. (2015). Mastering Informatics: A Healthcare Handbook for Success. Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Indianapolis, Indiana.

Representative Presentations

Is the Electronic Health Record Dumbing Down Clinicians? Invited panelist for the ACMI presentation moderated by Dr. Randy Miller. American Medical Informatics Association Annual Conference. San Diego, CA. October 31, 2021.

What's an Informatics Nurse Worth? Using Data to Elevate Your Career. Invited Keynote presentation, American Nursing Informatics Association Annual (Virtual) Conference. August 21, 2020.

Can We Stop the Perpetual Growth and Complexity of the EHR and Give Nurses Time Back with Their Patients? Invited Keynote presentation, 2019 Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics, University of Maryland School of Nursing. July 16th, 2019. Baltimore, MD.

Tackling Documentation Burden at Bon Secours and Beyond. Invited Presentation. 2019 Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics, University of Maryland School of Nursing. July 16th, 2019. Baltimore, MD.

Think Globally, Act Locally: Reducing the Burden of Documentation in the EHR. Invited Keynote presentation. New England Nursing Informatics Consortium. April 26, 2019. Boston, MA.

Decision Support to Reduce Nursing Documentation Burden. American Organization of Nurse Executives Annual Symposium. April 11, 2019. San Diego, CA.

Challenges and Opportunities in Studying Health IT Implementations: Understanding the Trees and the Forest. American Medical Informatics Association Annual Symposium. November 7, 2018. San Francisco, CA.

EBP and Nursing Research: Harnessing Healthcare Information to Transform Patient Care. Invited Keynote Presentation for the 12th Annual WellSpan Health Collaborative Evidence-Based Practice and Nursing Research Conference. April 19, 2018, York, PA.

The Burden of Clinician Documentation in the Electronic Health Record Era. Invited Widener University Keynote for MBA in Healthcare Administration 40th Anniversary Seminar. Chester, PA., April 17, 2018.


  • Inducted into the American College of Medical Informatics - November 2021
  • Recipient of the American Nursing Informatics Association's Maggie B. Cox Award along with co-author Maggie Swietlik DNP. This award is presented each year at the Annual Conference to an ANIA member whom has published in ANIA's journal, a timely and scholarly article, with significant implications for nursing and healthcare informatics practitioners. August 2021
  • Recipient of the Dean Collen Conway-Welch Student Mentoring Award, Vanderbilt University School of Nursing, Fall 2018
  • Inducted into the American Academy of Nursing - October 2016