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Paula J Tanabe

Laurel Chadwick Distinguished Professor of Nursing
School of Nursing
307 Trent Drive, School of Nursing, #4273, Ipe Building, Durham, NC 27710


Dr. Tanabe is the Laurel B. Chadwick Distinguished Professor in the Schools of Nursing and Medicine at Duke at the Duke University School of Nursing. Dr. Tanabe is a clinical and health services researcher. Her program of research focuses on improving systems of healthcare and patient outcomes for persons with sickle cell disease, a primarily minority and under-served population. Dr. Tanabe has received funding from the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality, the National Institute of Heart, Lung, and Blood, National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities and the National Institute of Nursing Research. Her work is advancing the care of individuals with sickle cell disease with a strong focus on improving pain management in the emergency department during a vaso-occlusive crisis. Her methodological expertise includes conducting multi-site clinical RCT’s, survey methods, qualitative research, quality improvement and implementation science. Dr. Tanabe has a strong passion for her work, individuals with sickle cell disease, and for mentoring students and faculty to conduct important, meaningful work to improve the health and well being of individuals and families.

Current Appointments & Affiliations

Laurel Chadwick Distinguished Professor of Nursing · 2019 - Present School of Nursing
Professor in the School of Nursing · 2017 - Present School of Nursing
Vice Dean, Research and Regulatory Affairs · 2020 - Present School of Nursing
Professor of Medicine · 2017 - Present Medicine, Hematology, Medicine
Assistant Professor in Surgery · 2017 - Present Emergency Medicine, Clinical Science Departments
Affiliate Faculty Member, Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy · 2019 - Present Duke - Margolis Center For Health Policy, Initiatives

Education, Training & Certifications

University of Illinois · 1996 Ph.D.
Loyola University, Chicago · 1990 M.S.N.
Rush University · 1987 B.S.