Dr. Connor received her BS and MS in Nursing at Stony Brook University in New York, PhD from Columbia University in New York, and completed her post-doctoral training through the Harvard School of Public Health’s Pediatric Harvard Health Services Research Fellowship Program in Boston, Massachusetts. In 2005, Dr. Connor was the first nurse to graduate from this prestigious fellowship program. Dr. Connor joined the staff at Boston Children’s Hospital in 2003 as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. In 2005 she accepted a position as Nurse Scientist for Cardiovascular and Critical Care Services, and in 2009 was appointed Director of Research for Cardiovascular and Critical Care Services.
Dr. Connor’s program of research focuses on the paucity of available measures to understand the work of nursing as it relates to variation in patient outcomes. In 2009 she developed and implemented a national nursing benchmarking process across 15 pediatric cardiovascular programs for the American College of Cardiology. That successful effort identified an unmet need and in 2011, led to the establishment of a larger collaboration of 27 pediatric cardiovascular programs named the Consortium of Congenital Cardiac Care Measurement of Nursing Practice (C4-MNP). C4-MNP is a community of nurse leaders, researchers, bedside clinicians, and parents of children with congenital heart disease (CHD) committed to rigorous measurement of quality nursing care to optimize outcomes for children with cardiac disease. Once finalized, creation of the C4-MNP matrix will enable data to be linked across multiple pediatric hospitals and facilitate a detailed examination of risk-adjusted patient outcomes.
In parallel to the emergence of C4-MNP, Dr. Connor also led the development and implementation of a pediatric nurse acuity tool that is reflective of current nursing practice. The Complexity Assessment and Monitoring to Ensure Optimal Outcomes (CAMEO) acuity tool was designed to measure cognitive workload (critical thinking) and complexity (level of surveillance) of nursing care in the pediatric setting. Developed in 2009, the CAMEO has since been adapted and validated to measure nursing workload across all pediatric and neonatal settings.
Additionally, Dr. Connor serves as director of Boston Children’s Hospital Pediatric Nursing Science Fellowship program (founded in 2012). Within this program, she mentors nursing science fellows in the development, implementation, and dissemination of research and quality improvement projects. Dr. Connor has received multiple honors for her work including the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses Circle of Excellence award, the Boston Business Journal’s Champion in Healthcare recognition and designation as a Notable Nurse in the New England edition of Nurse.com (formerly Nursing Spectrum).
Research Focus: Health services and nursing research centered on the development of nurse-sensitive quality metrics and their impact on patient outcomes.