Sandra B. Dunbar PhD, RN, FAAN, FAHA, FPCNA

The Charles Howard Candler Professor of Nursing


Associate Dean for Academic Advancement

Phone: 404.727.6939


Additional Contact Information

Mailing Address:

Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing

Emory University

1520 Clifton Road, NE

Atlanta, GA 30322-4027

Room: 402B


Sandra Dunbar has been a member of the faculty in the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing since 1988. She is a cardiovascular nurse researcher and educator whose program of research focuses on psychosocial responses to serious cardiac illness, such as heart failure and ventricular arrhythmia and treatment with implantable technology. Studies of patient and family responses have led to the development and testing of interventions to improve both physical and psychosocial outcomes. Dunbar's recent work was focused on testing a family focused intervention to improve outcomes for patients with chronic heart failure. She has completed another clinical trial of a psychoeducational intervention to improve outcomes (depression, anxiety, functional status) of high risk arrhythmia patients treated with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD). She is currently co-investigator in an NHLBI funded partnership between Emory and Morehouse Universities to reduce cardiovascular health disparities in which she is the lead investigator for the aim testing a lifestyle intervention in African Americans with Metabolic Syndrome. Her new NIH funding will support study of HF patients who also have diabetes and interventions to improve integrated self care in cormorbid conditions. She is also collaborating on a P01 focused on caregiver stress.

Dunbar has led interdisciplinary teams in studies funded by NIH NINR and the American Heart Association, and was a co-investigator in the international COURAGE Trial. Dunbar is also an active volunteer and Chair of the American Heart Association's Council of Cardiovascular Nursing, was formerly President of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses, and chair of the Nursing Committee of the Heart Failure Society of America. She is a member of the editorial board of several major nursing journals including Heart and Lung, and Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Nurses and the American Heart Association, and has received the prestigious Katherine A. Lembright award from the American Heart Association for her contributions to cardiovascular nursing research. She received the 2003 Georgia Nurse Researcher Award, and was named the 2005 Distinguished Research Lecturer by the American Association of Critical Care Nurses, and recently named as one of the top 10 cardiovascular nursing scientists of the American Heart Association, and received the One in One Hundred Mentor awards from the Emory School of Medicine postdoctoral training office. Dunbar was named the 2010 Distinguished Nurse Researcher by the Southern Nurses Research Society.

At Emory University, Dunbar has been a fellow in the Woodruff Leadership Academy for the 2006 year, and she has served on the President's Advisory Committee, the General Clinical Research Center Advisory Committee, and the Predictive Health Initiative Development group, and is member of the Emory Heart and Vascular Center Board. In the past, she has served the School of Nursing as Department Chair of Adult and Elder Health, DGS and Coordinator of the PhD in Nursing Program, and Co-Director of the Center for the Study of Symptoms, Symptom Interactions and Health Outcomes.