Dr Betty R. Ferrell, Director of Nursing Research and Education and Professor at City of Hope Medical Center in Duarte, California, USA, was awarded the title of doctor honoris causa of the Department of Nursing of the NKUA’s School of Health Sciences on Tuesday, 5 September 2023, at 19:00, at the Great Hall of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.
The ceremony was also live-streamed:
The Rector of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Professor Gerasimos Siasos, addressed the ceremony, and Dr Elisabeth Patiraki, Professor at the NKUA’s Department of Nursing, presented the work and personality of the honouree.
In his address, the Rector of NKUA said, among other things, the following:
‘It is with great honour and joy—and always in keeping with a long-standing tradition of our Institution to celebrate those who have contributed the most to science—that we welcome today in this historic Ceremonial Hall of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens a great personality, a brilliant scientist, Dr Betty R. Ferrell, to confer upon her the highest honour of our University, the title of doctor honoris causa, awarded by the Department of Nursing of the NKUA’s School of Health Sciences. Dr Ferrell’s dedication to science inspires a whole new generation of young researchers and sets an example for all members of the global academic community.
Dr Ferrell’s contribution to Nursing spans over 40 years. She is Director of Nursing Research and Education and Professor at City of Hope Medical Center in Duarte, California, a world-class centre for biomedical research and the treatment of cancer and other diseases.
She was principal investigator of the End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium, a project launched in 2000 and administered to all US States and 101 countries. The project is about improving palliative care and quality of life for patients and families and has, to this day, had impressive results with over 1.4 million clinicians, nurses, and other health professionals trained in its context.
Dr Ferrell directs several other funded projects related to palliative care and quality-of-life issues.
Her research programme includes areas of pain management, quality of life for patients with cancer and their family caregivers, and palliative care.
She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine since 2019. She has over 480 publications in peer-reviewed journals and has authored 12 books, including the Oxford Textbook of Palliative Nursing. From 2016 to date, she has been given many awards, with the most important occurring in 2021 when she received the Oncology Nursing Society Lifetime Achievement Award and was inducted as a “Living Legend” by the American Academy of Nursing.
With the utmost joy, today we welcome Dr Betty R. Ferrell as a select member of the NKUA’s ever growing ranks of doctors honoris causa. We offer the honouree our heartfelt congratulations for her work and unending contributions to human health and well-being’.
Shortly afterwards, Professor Pavlos Myrianthefs, Chair at the Department of Nursing of the NKUA’s School of Health Sciences, read the Department’s Resolution, the Award, and the Honorary Diploma. Next, the Dean of the School of Health Sciences, Professor Emmanouil Pikoulis, invested the honouree with the gown of the School.
The ceremony concluded with a speech by the honouree, Dr Betty R. Ferrell, entitled ‘Palliative Care: Training Professionals to Provide Quality Care in Serious Illness’.