Dr. Ann O'Mara is Head of Palliative Research in the NCI Division of Cancer Prevention. She manages a portfolio of symptom management and palliative and end-of-life care research projects. The majority of these projects focus on the more common morbidities associated with cancer and its treatment, e.g., pain, chemotherapy induced neuropathy, fatigue, sleep disturbances, and psychosocial issues, such as distress, anxiety and depression. She is a member of several trans-NIH working groups and consortia, e.g., trans-NIH Pain Consortium, established to enhance research and promote collaboration across NIH Institutes and Centers with programs and activities addressing morbidities.
Dr. O'Mara has conducted research on end-of-life care, and on educating nurses and physicians about palliative care. Her publications focus on quality-of-life issues facing cancer patients and families across the disease trajectory. Prior to NCI, she was Director of the Advanced Practice Oncology Track, University of Maryland School of Nursing. She is a member of the Oncology Nursing Society, American Society of Clinical Oncology, American Nurses Association, American Pain Society, and International Society for Quality of Life Research; a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing; and a former editorial board member of the Journal of Clinical Oncology. She has received numerous NIH merit awards for efforts promoting symptom management and quality-of-life research. She received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University at Buffalo, the State University of New York, where she received a BS in Nursing. She earned an MS in Nursing from the Catholic University of America, a Master of Public Health from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, and a PhD from the University of Maryland, College Park.