Associate Professor Ashley Darcy-Mahoney will spend a year as the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in-Residence, helping to develop federal health policy.
Operating under a congressional charter, NAM provides evidence-based solutions and offers national and global policies to address social determinants of health and advance public health. Through interprofessional collaboration and engagement, the Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in-Residence position provides nursing perspectives to better support public health. The American Academy of Nursing, American Nurses Association and the American Nurses Foundation support the position.
Dr. Darcy-Mahoney, Ph.D., NNP, FAAN has made significant contributions to health care in recent years. In partnership with the National League for Nursing, she developed an online toolkit aimed at helping nursing schools better educate students on how to identify and address factors not previously considered when providing pediatric care. As a Macy Faculty Scholar, Dr. Ashley Darcy-Mahoney educated pediatric clinicians on the drivers of inequality and its links to early brain and child development.
She has also helped parents prepare their children for lifelong success. She was a lead member of the team that conceptualized and launched the “Talk With Me Baby” and Háblame Bebé programs that use nurses as a workforce to teach parents about how early language exposure is an important predictor of future academic success. Launched in 2018, “Háblame Bebé” is a childhood language development app designed for bilingual parents whose primary language is Spanish. Designed by a team that includes Dr. Darcy-Mahoney, the app draws on the same principles used in “Talk With Me Baby,” and encourages Spanish-speaking parents to talk to their children in the language they’re most comfortable with.
Dr. Darcy-Mahoney also serves as the interim director of GW’s Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders Institute.
“I am honored to be selected as the Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in-Residence at NAM as this role will provide an opportunity to use my skills in a way that will have a profound impact on health policy, nursing’s role for the next generation of children, and the future well-being of our nation,” said Dr. Darcy-Mahoney.
The Scholar-in-Residence program is key to ensuring a nursing perspective is included in national health policy discussions, said GW Nursing Dean Pamela Jeffries. “We’re located in Washington, D.C., so it follows that our faculty helps lead those discussions. Dr. Darcy-Mahoney embodies the best of nursing, and the best of interprofessional teamwork,” Dean Jeffries said.