63383-Willis, Valerie

Valerie Willis, PhD

Visiting Clinical Assistant Professor of Medical & Molecular Genetics

IB 130
Indianapolis, IN


Valerie Willis, PhD, RN, PPCNP-BC, PCNS-BC, holds a faculty appointment as Visiting Assistant Professor-Clinical Division, in the Indiana University School of Medicine, Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics where she collaborates with an interprofessional team to advance the IU Precision Health Initiative. Her expertise in implementation science supports the development and integration of advanced practice providers (nurse practitioners and physician assistants) in the Genetics service line in inpatient and outpatient settings. Additionally, she collaborates to support the robust rapid genome sequencing program in the IUH Riley Hospital for Children-Level IV NICU. Dr. Willis earned a PhD in Nursing and Health Science with emphasis in genetics and health policy from the University of San Diego.

Subsequent to doctoral training, she was the first advanced practice provider accepted to and successfully complete the two-year Fellowship in Genomic Medicine Program Management co-sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics. As a clinician-scientist, Dr. Willis is dual board-certified as a pediatric nurse practitioner with expertise in longitudinal neurodevelopmental follow-up of high-risk infants and a neonatal clinical nurse specialist. As a TeamSTEPPS master trainer, she is an enduring champion of interprofessional collaboration to promote safe, quality, and equitable patient/family-centered care, including the domain of precision health. Her research interests include implementation science, along with the identification, impact, and mitigation of early childhood exposures that influence optimal health outcomes, as well as best practice data ecosystems to support precision health throughout the life course.

Dr. Willis has presented podium and poster presentations at national and international neonatal, pediatric, and genetics conferences and her scholarly work is published in peer-reviewed journals. She is an active member of myriad professional organizations including the International Society of Nurses in Genetics, the NHGRI Inter-Society Coordinating Committee for Practitioner Education in Genomics, the Children's Hospital Neonatal Consortium-Genomics Working Group, and the National Association of Neonatal Nurses.

Key Publications

Barksdale, C.L. Hill, L.D., Jean-Francois, B., Maholmes, V., …Willis, V., et al. (2024). A National Institutes of Health Approach for Advancing Research to Improve Youth Mental Health and Reduce Disparities. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0890856724000029

Pacheco, J.A., Rasmussen, L.V., Wiley, K. Jr., …Willis, V., et al. (2023). Evaluation of the portability of computable phenotypes with natural language processing in the eMERGE network. Nature Scientific Reports, 13, 1971. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-023-27481-y.pdf 

Willis, V., Brower, A., Chan, K., & Barnes, L. (2021). Newborn Screening Translational Research Network: Translating Evidence-Based Practices to Enhance Parent Engagement. Molecular Genetics and Metabolism, 132(1), Supplement 1, eP462. https://www.sciencedirect.com/journal/molecular-genetics-and-metabolism/vol/132/ suppl/S1  

Taylor, J., Brower, A., & Willis, V. (2021). Health Disparities Stemming from Race and Ethnicity Differences: Best Practices for Reporting Demographics in Newborn Screening Research. Molecular Genetics and Metabolism, 132(1), Supplement 1, eP471. https://www.sciencedirect.com/journal/molecular-genetics-and-metabolism/vol/132/ suppl/S1 

Willis, V. (2018). The relationship between hospital construction and high risk infant auditory function at NICU discharge: A retrospective descriptive cohort study. Health Environment Research and Design (HERD) Journal, 11(2), 124-136. DOI: 10.1177/1937586717742123. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29243512/. Selected as continuing education article for Evidence-Based Design Accreditation and Certification (EDAC) and American Institute of Architects (AIA).

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