Lisa Summers, DrPH, FACNM

Lecturer in Nursing

Yale School of Nursing - Room 20410



Lisa brings 40 years of experience as a nurse, midwife, educator and policy analyst to her role as Deputy Director of the DNP Program.  Lisa practiced clinically as a nurse and then a nurse-midwife for over 20 years before shifting to policy work.  A 1983 graduate of Yale School of Nursing, she practiced in large midwifery services and in private practice.  She served on faculties of nurse-midwifery education programs at Baylor and Columbia, and medical school faculties at the University of Texas and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, developing a profound appreciation for the potential of interdisciplinary education.

Lisa’s entrée to association work came in 1997 when she joined the staff at the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM).  In 11 years there, ultimately as Director of Professional Services, she provided consultation on a range of issues from policy and strategy for malpractice insurance and reimbursement, to clinical topics and scope of practice.  Lisa subsequently held policy positions at National Partnership for Women & Families and at the American Nurses Association (ANA) as health system reform was debated and the Affordable Care Act was passed and implemented.  She also served as Director of Policy & Advocacy at Centering Healthcare Institute. In six years at the ANA, she focused on health system reform and the role of advanced practice nursing.

In 2010, Lisa began returning to Yale School of Nursing (YSN) to teach health policy.  In January 2017, she began a new position as Deputy Director in the Doctor of Nursing Practice program.

She holds a doctoral degree in Sociomedical Sciences from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health.   She was elected to Fellowship in the ACNM in 2006, and was chosen as one of “90 Yale Nurses” honored on the 90th anniversary of YSN in 2013.

Research Interests and/or Clinical Practice

Health system reform; scale and spread of innovative models; credentialing; scope of practice

Selected Publications and Presentations


Summers L and Bickford C.  Nursing’s Leading Edges: Specialization, Credentialing, and Certification of RNs and APRNs. American Nurses Association, 2016.

Summers L.  Fostering Best Practices in a Dynamic Health Care Environment:  Policy and Advocacy.  In Anderson BA, Rooks JP, Barroso R. Best Practices in Midwifery: Using the Evidence to Implement Change. Springer Publishing Company,  2016. 

Summers L, Brassard A.  The American Nurses Association.  In Boudreau KA, Smolenski M (Eds), Health Policy and Advanced Practice Nursing: Impact and Implications (2nd Ed.). Springer Publishing Company, in press.

Summers L. Making Change Sustainable: The Role of Policy and Advocacy.  In Rising SS and Quimby CH, The CenteringPregnancy Model:  The Power of Group Care. Springer Publishing Company, 2016.

Summers L.  Coming to a consensus about APRN regulation.  Nursing Management. 42(12):10- 14, 2011.

Selected Presentations

CenteringPregnancy: Innovation in Women’s Health. Business of Women’s Health; World Healthcare Congress. April 7 - 9, 2014, National Harbor, MD.

Update on the ACA: Impact on Women and Babies. AWHONN Annual Convention. June 14- 18, 2014, Orlando, FL.

Positioning the APN for a Changing Healthcare Environment.  Keynote Address for Children’s Hospital of Pennsylvania 17th Annual Advanced Practice Nurse Conference, Leading the Path to Value and Access, May 12, 2016, Philadelphia, PA.

Midwifery and Nursing: Can nursing organizations help us to advance the midwifery agenda? ACNM 61st Annual Meeting, May 24, 2016, Albuquerque, NM.

From “Shall Not” to Reproductive Justice:  Abortion Care & the ACNM. ACNM 61st Annual Meeting, May 26, 2016, Albuquerque, NM.

Positioning Midwives for a Changing Healthcare Environment.  60th Anniversary of YSN Midwifery Education Program. September 17, 2016, Yale School of Nursing, New Haven, CT

Positioning NPs for a Changing Healthcare Environment. Alger Lee Advanced Practice Seminars. November 2, 2016, Chattanooga, TN.