|Joan Austin, IU Distinguished Professor of nursing, is one of only two nurses recently elected to the prestigious Institute of Medicine (IOM), National Academy of Sciences. Austin is nationally recognized for her research on children with epilepsy. “The election of Joan Austin to the Institute of Medicine adds greatly to the reputation of the IU School of Nursing because that organization is the ‘think tank’ for national health policy,” said Angela McBride, dean of the school. “This is Austin’s second major honor this year. Earlier, she became the first nurse to receive a Jacob Javits Neuroscience Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).”
The National Advisory Neurological Disorders and Stroke Council, a division of the NIH, awards the Jacob Javits Neuroscience Award to researchers with a distinguished record of contributions to the field of neurological science. Austin has won numerous other awards for her research, including the Epilepsy Foundation of America Special Recognition Award in 1995 and a 1999 Award of Social Accomplishment awarded jointly through the International Bureau for Epilepsy and the International League Against Epilepsy. Austin is currently a research commission member of the International Bureau for Epilepsy and serves on the advisory board of the Epilepsy Foundation of America and on the board of directors for the American Epilepsy Society. She also is the principal investigator leading the administrative core of the new Center for Enhancing the Quality of Life in Chronic Illness that is funded by an NIH grant and headquartered at IUPUI.
IOM is a division of the National Academy of Sciences made up of more than 600 volunteers who conduct studies and author reports on health policy issues. Current projects include studies on the early detection of breast cancer, a medical system to support long-duration space travel beyond Earth’s orbit, and the safety of the anthrax vaccine used by the U.S. military