Susan DeSanto-Madeya, PhD, MSN, BSN, FPCN, FAAN

  • Professor, Weyker Endowed Chair for Palliative Care, Interim Associate Dean
  • College of Nursing
  • Phone: 401.874.2038
  • Email:
  • Office Location: RI NEC, Room 231, 350 Eddy St., Providence, RI, 02903


Dr. Susan DeSanto-Madeya’s scholarship focuses on palliative and end-of life nursing care. She is currently an investigator on an NIH-funded study examining standardized patient centered medication review in home hospice, and the primary investigator on a Hillman Foundation funded study to examine Photovoice as an intervention to align goals of care for dyads living with serious illness. She was the recipient of funding from the Cambia Health Foundation, and named a Sojourns Palliative Care Scholar Leader, to develop, implement, and evaluate an interdisciplinary palliative care certificate program. She has presented her work at professional conferences both national and globally. Additionally, she has consulted internationally including Romania, Israel, Switzerland, Japan and Turkey.

Dr. DeSanto-Madeya is a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing in recognition of her contributions to the field of palliative and end-of-life nursing. She is a member the Hospice and Palliative Nursing Association, Eastern Nursing Research Society and Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society for Nursing. She serves on numerous committees, including as a Board member for the Partnership to Reduce Cancer in Rhode Island and the Nursing Education Task Force of the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness/Institute for Healthcare Improvement.


Palliative care; end-of-life care; hospice; disparities; advance care planning; goals of care conversation; family caregivers, community-engagement; interprofessional education; bereavement; and spirituality


PhD, Nursing, Widener University

MSN, Nursing, Widener University

BS, Nursing, East Stroudsburg University

Selected Publications

Tjia J, Clayton MF, Fromme E, McPherson ML, DeSanto-Madeya S. (2021). Shared Medication PLanning In (SIMPLIfy) Home Hospice: An Educational Program to Enable Goal-Concordant Prescribing in Home Hospice. Journal of Pain & Symptom Management. E-pub ahead of print. 

DeSanto-Madeya S, Tjia J, Fitch C, Wachholtz A. (2021). Feasibility and Acceptability of Digital Legacy-Making: An Innovative Story-Telling Intervention for Adults with Cancer. American Journal of Hospice & Palliative Care, 38(7):772-777.

Tjia J, Clayton M, Chiriboga G, Staples B, Puerto G, Rappaport L, DeSanto-Madeya S. (2021). Stakeholder-Engaged Process for Refining the Design of a Clinical Trial in Home Hospice. BMC Medical Research Methodologies, 21(1): 92.

Clark LTS, Sanchez S, Phelan C, Sokol-Hessner L, Bruce K, DeSanto-Madeya S.  (2021). COVID-19 Inpatient Cohorting Team: Successes and Lessons Learned. Nursing Management, 52(5):38-45. 

Cross K, Bradbury A, Burnham N, Corbett-Carbonneau D, Peterson K, Phelan C, DeSanto-Madeya S. (2021). A Nurse Staffing Model for an Unprecedented Event. Nursing Management, 52(3):34-42. 

DeSanto-Madeya S, Darcy AMG, Barsamian J, Anderson A, Sullivan L. (2020). An Innovative Application of End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium Curriculum to Increase Clinical Nurses’ Palliative Care Knowledge. Journal of Hospice & Palliative  Nursing, 22(5):377-382. 

Seaman JB, Lakin JR, Anderson E, Bernacki R, Candrian C, Cotter VT, DeSanto-Madeya S, Epstein AS, Kestenbaum A, Izumi S, Sumser B, Tjia J, Hurd CJ (2020). Interdisciplinary or Interprofessional: Why Terminology in Teamwork Matters to Hospice and Palliative Care. Journal of Palliative Medicine, 23(9):1157-1158. 

Lundquist DM, Berry DL, Boltz M, DeSanto-Madeya S, Grace PJ. (2020). I’m Still Mom: Young Mothers Living with Advanced Breast Cancer. Oncology Nursing Forum. 47(4):405-414. 

DeSanto-Madeya S, Willis D, McLaughlin J, & Boslet A. (2019). Healing Experience for Family Caregivers after an Intensive Care Unit Death. BMJ Supportive & Palliative CareAdvance online publication.

Tjia J, DeSanto-Madeya S, Mazor KM, Han P, Nguyen B, Curran T, Gallagher J, Clayton MF. (2019). Nurses’ Perspectives on Family Caregiver Medication Management Support and Deprescribing. Journal of Hospice and Palliative Nursing, 21, 312-318.

Lundquist D, Berry D, Boltz M, DeSanto-Madeya S, Grace P. (2019). Wearing the Mask of Wellness: The Experience of Young Women Living with Advanced Breast Cancer. Oncology Nursing Forum, 46, 329-337.

Dahlin C, Sanders J, Carlton B, DeSanto-Madeya S, Donesky D, Lakin, J, Roeland E, Scherer JS, Walling A, Williams B. (2019). The Cambia Sojourns Scholars Leadership Program: 2016 Projects and Reflections on Leadership for the Future of Palliative Care. Journal of Palliative Medicine, 22, 823-829.

DeSanto-Madeya, S (2019). Compendium of treatment of end stage non-cancer diagnoses: Neurological diseases and trauma (3rd ed.). HPNA

Milliken A, Ludlow L, DeSanto-Madeya S, Grace, P. (2018). The Development and Validation of the Ethical Awareness Scale. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 74, 2008-2016.

Mackinson LG, Corey J, Kelly V, O’Reilly KP, Stevens JP, DeSanto-Madeya S, Williams D, O’Donoghue SC, Foley J. (2018). Nurse Project Consultant: Critical Care Nurses Move Beyond the Bedside to Affect Quality and Safety. Critical Care Nurse, 38(3), 54-66.

DeSanto-Madeya, S & Grace, P. J. (2018). The role of the APRN in palliative and end-of-life care. In P. J. Grace (Ed.), Nursing ethics and professional responsibility in advanced practice (3rd ed., pp. 495-541). Jones and Bartlett.

Corey J, O’Donoghue SC, Kelly V, Mackinson LG, Williams D, O’Reilly K P, DeSanto-Madeya S (2018). Adoption of an Electronic Template to Promote Evidence-based Practice for Policies, Procedures, Guidelines and Directives Documents. Dimensions of Critical Care Nursing, 37, 225-234.

DeSanto-Madeya S, Safizedeh P. (2017). Family Satisfaction with End-of-Life Care in the ICU: A Systematic Review. Dimensions in Critical Care Nursing, 36, 278-283.

DeSanto-Madeya S, McDermott D, Zerillo JA, Weinstein N, Buss MK. (2017). Developing a Model for Embedded Palliative Care in a Cancer Clinic. BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care, 7, 247-250.