Eileen Lake, PhD, RN

Eileen Lake, PhD, RN


Jessie M. Scott Endowed Term Chair, Professor of Nursing and Health Policy, School of Nursing
Professor, Sociology, School of Arts and Sciences
Associate Director, Center for Health Outcomes and Policy, School of Nursing

Eileen T. Lake, PhD, RN, FAAN, is the Jessie M. Scott Endowed Term Chair in Nursing and Health Policy, Professor of Nursing, Professor of Sociology, and the Associate Director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research at Penn's School of Nursing.

Dr. Lake’s research centers on how the organizational context of care, including the work environment, nurse staffing, and nurses’ educational preparation, influence quality of care and outcomes. She is motivated by the pivotal role of nurses in health care delivery that is frequently limited by weak organizational support for nurses. Lake’s three, currently-funded interdisciplinary studies link hospital nursing resources, such as the work environment and staffing, to quality outcomes such as parent satisfaction in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), readmission rates for prevalent health conditions among hospitalized adults, and mortality among hospitalized patients in Chile. Her studies have large, national samples of  neonatal intensive care units, Magnet hospitals (accredited for achieving excellent nursing standards) and non-Magnet hospitals, and public and private hospitals in Chile. 

Dr. Lake developed and stewards the National Quality Forum (NQF)-endorsed Practice Environment Scale of the Nursing Work Index. This instrument has been translated into 23 languages and has generated multi-national evidence showing that better nurse work environments yield superior quality of care. In 2018, she was named the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Research in Nursing & Health. She serves on the editorial advisory boards of American Nurse Today, American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing, and Metas de Enfermería, a Spanish nursing journal.

Her awards include the 2011 Distinguished Alumna of her alma mater, Duke University School of Nursing, the 2014 Research Mentorship Award of AcademyHealth Interest Group on Nursing Issues, and the 2017 Dean’s Award for Undergraduate Scholarly Mentorship.

Lake earned a PhD in Sociology and a MS in Nursing Administration from the University of Pennsylvania, a MA in Public Policy from Georgetown University, and a BS in Nursing from Duke University.