Sandra A. Mitchell, PhD, CRNP, AOCN

Dr. Sandra Mitchell is Senior Scientist and a Program Director in the Outcomes Research Branch in the Healthcare Delivery Research Program. She leads efforts to address symptom burden and functional impairment during and following cancer treatment. She has a particular interest how to improve the effectiveness and tolerability of cancer treatments for vulnerable, frail, and older adult patient populations.

Dr. Mitchell oversees a research portfolio focused in three areas:

  • Analysis and interpretation of patient-reported and performance-based endpoints in trials of behavioral, supportive care and healthcare delivery interventions and new cancer-directed therapies
  • Development and evaluation of interventions and care delivery models that address rehabilitative and supportive care needs across the cancer continuum from treatment through survivorship and end-of-life
  • Measurement and management of symptoms and functional impairment

Her methodologic interests include longitudinal modeling and the design and analysis of group-randomized trials for healthcare delivery research. Her work also emphasizes implementation science and the use of digital strategies to support knowledge translation and drive practice improvement.

Since 2010, Dr. Mitchell has served as the scientific director for the NCI’s Patient-Reported Outcomes version of the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (PRO-CTCAE™). In addition, she is an NCI Science Officer for IMPACT: Improving the Management of symPtoms during And following Cancer Treatment, an NCI-consortium studying the effectiveness and implementation of routine symptom surveillance and evidence-based guidelines ( Web Site Policy). She also serves as the NCI Science Officer for a network of studies testing interventions to address late and long-term adverse effects in pediatric, adolescent and young adult survivors of childhood cancers ( Web Site Policy).

Dr. Mitchell is a board-certified Acute Care Nurse Practitioner with expertise in the management of stem cell transplant survivors experiencing chronic graft-versus-host disease and other late and long-term treatment effects. She maintains a clinical practice in survivorship care and conducts research as an adjunct investigator in NCI’s Immune Deficiency Cellular Therapy Program, in the Center for Cancer Research Intramural Research Program. Dr. Mitchell’s work has been recognized with numerous awards, including the Relentless for a Cure Award from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the Oncology Nursing Society’s Award for Excellence in Nursing-Sensitive Patient Outcomes, and the Rose Mary Carroll-Johnson ONS Distinguished Award for Contributions to the Literature. She is an elected Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing.

Research Areas

  • Pain and symptom management
  • Rehabilitation to address functional limitations in children, adolescents and adults across the cancer control continuum
  • Management of older and/or frail adults to improve the tolerability of cancer treatment
  • Cancer survivorship and late and long-term effects
  • Clinical trial design, analysis and interpretation in healthcare delivery research and implementation science


  • B.Sc. (Nursing), MSc. (Nursing); University of Toronto
  • Post-Master’s Nurse Practitioner (Acute Care and Geriatrics); University of Rochester
  • PhD (Quantitative methods); University of Utah


  • Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner (Board Certified in Acute Care/Geriatrics)
  • Advanced Oncology Certified Nurse (AOCN)
Last Updated: 18 Jun, 2024