Columbia’s Suzanne Bakken to Receive Collen Award in Informatics

Suzanne R. Bakken, Ph.D., RN, will receive the 2023 Morris F. Collen Award of Excellence from the American College of Medical Informatics (ACMI) in November. Her research has focused on the intersection of informatics and health equity for more than 30 years.

Bakken is a professor of nursing and professor of biomedical informatics; Executive Director, Community Engaged Data Science and Health Informatics Center; Co-director of the Predoctoral and Postdoctoral Training Program on Reducing Health Disparities through Informatics at Columbia University, where she directs the Center for Community Engaged Health Informatics and Data Sciences and co-directs the pre-doctoral program on Reducing Health Disparities through Informatics (RHeaDI) from the NINR. her and Postdoctoral Training Program, which she started in 2002.

ACMI is a college of elected fellows who have made significant and sustained contributions to the field of biomedical informatics.

This award, given in honor of Dr. Morris F. Collen, a longtime Kaiser Permanente physician executive and intellectual leader in the field of medical informatics, is given to an individual whose personal commitment and dedication to medical informatics has left a lasting impression on the field. The award is determined by the ACMI Awards Committee.

This is the second consecutive year that the award has been given to a computer scientist associated with Columbia. In 2022, the award went to George Hripcsak, MD, MS, Vivian Beaumont Allen Professor and chair of the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia.

“ACMI is pleased to recognize and congratulate Dr. Bakken for a career of singular achievements, sustained intellectual leadership, and educational innovation. “He has made superior contributions to the field of computer science,” said ACMI President Kevin B. Johnson, MD, MS, David L. Cohen University Professor of Biomedical Informatics, Computer and Information Sciences, Pediatrics, and Science Communication. at the University of Pennsylvania, in a statement.

Bakken’s contributions are internationally recognized and his expertise is sought in various corners of the healthcare ecosystem, ACMI said. She is a nurse, a professional pursuit that led her to systems science as an approach to nursing: the ability to scale interventions and help more than a single patient. Her deep commitment to clinical practice and science in technology-informed interdisciplinary teams has guided her primary work focused on patient care outcomes, quality of life, and reducing health disparities. Integrating a health equity lens into the field of informatics has been her life’s work in research, education, training, and mentoring future leaders.

ACMI noted that her current role as editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association (JAMIA) represents a complete professional achievement. She authored the magazine’s first publication in 1994: volume one, number one. It is laudable to achieve a position of influence as editor of a journal that impacts the entire field.

As a mentor with a particular interest in women and those traditionally underrepresented in medicine, she has launched the careers of hundreds. New research and practices are being conducted today as a direct result of Bakken’s commitment to training and educating researchers and clinicians.

Bakken is also a leader in policy development and currently serves on the NIH’s Novel and Exceptional Research and Technology Advisory Committee and co-chairs the NIH ENGAGE Working Group, which aims to increase patient and community engagement across of the research life cycle.

His work has been funded by the Agency for Healthcare and Research Quality, the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR), and the National Library of Medicine. Dr. Bakken is a member of the Methodology Committee of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). He previously served on the Board of Regents of the National Library of Medicine.

Bakken received his PhD in nursing from the University of California, San Francisco, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in medical informatics at Stanford University.

He will receive the award on November 12 during the opening session of the 2023 AMIA Annual Symposium in New Orleans.

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