Sandra A. Mitchell


Dr. Sandra A. Mitchell is a Research Scientist and Program Director in the Outcomes Research Branch in the Healthcare Delivery Research Program. Her primary research interests focus on the measurement of symptoms and impairments in physical functioning, and the testing of interventions to improve these outcomes, especially in vulnerable populations (senior adult, mulitmorbid, frail, and medically underserved). She has extensive experience in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of patient-generated health outcomes data in clinical trials and advanced multivariate statistical analysis. She has methodologic interests in latent variable mixture modelling, as well as the use of performance-based measures of physical functioning. Her program of research has an emphasis in cancer care delivery science, including dissemination and implementation of evidence-based interventions, quality measurement, and the use of health information technologies and decision support to improve care quality and strengthen patient self-management.

Dr. Mitchell serves as the NCI Scientific Director for the development and testing of the National Cancer Institute’s Patient-Reported Outcomes version of the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (PRO-CTCAE), a new electronic patient-reported outcomes measurement system to integrate patient-reporting of symptomatic adverse events into cancer clinical trials. PRO-CTCAE integrates the patient perspective into adverse event reporting, and may ultimately prove useful as an outcome measure in comparative effectiveness research and to profile the severity and impact of therapy-related symptom burden in patients undergoing treatment for cancer.

A board-certified acute care nurse practitioner, Dr. Mitchell received her undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Toronto and the University of Rochester, and received a PhD from the University of Utah with a focus in quantitative methods. She is the author of numerous peer-reviewed publications in the areas of symptom management, cancer survivorship, measurement of physical function, and the application of patient-reported outcomes to evaluate treatment effects, including toxicity and therapeutic response. A Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, Dr. Mitchell’s work has also been recognized with two NIH Clinical Center Director’s Awards, the Oncology Nursing Society’s Award for Excellence in Nursing-Sensitive Patient Outcomes, and the Relentless for a Cure Award from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.