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Joanne Iennaco

Professor, Clinical Track; Affiliated Faculty, Yale Institute for Global Health; Psychiatric-Mental Health Specialty

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Joanne Iennaco, PhD, PMHNP (BC), APRN



Joanne DeSanto Iennaco is an Associate Professor of Nursing and Psychiatry at Yale University, and Director of the Clinical Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Yale School of Nursing.

Professor Iennaco holds a PhD in chronic disease epidemiology from Yale University’s School of Public Health. Her research focuses on the effects of aggression exposure on workers in inpatient psychiatric and hospital settings. Professor Iennaco is the US lead on the PERoPA-Study (Perceptions of Patient and Visitor Aggression in Healthcare Organizations), an international study of nursing managers in Australia, Canada, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and United States. She was a clinical interventionist leading CBT for insomnia groups for Professor Nancy Redeker’s randomized controlled trial, the Heart Sleep Study, and she has worked with Yale’s Occupational and Environmental Medicine research team studying the effect of psychosocial aspects of the workplace on health.

Professor Iennaco is a psychiatric nurse practitioner with dual certification as both a family psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner and an adult psychiatric mental health clinical nurse specialist. She was recently awarded the 2016 Nightingale Award for Excellence in Nursing. Professor Iennaco was a 2010-2012 Yale Center for Clinical Investigation (YCCI) Scholar, her project was on the Effects of Aggression Exposure in Psychiatric Settings on Employee Health and Work Outcomes. She was also honored with the St. Joseph’s College Outstanding Faculty Award in 1999 and with a Faculty Service-learning Award in 1998 from the Maine Campus Compact.

She is currently the President of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association New England Chapter, a member of the American Public Health Association, the European Violence in Psychiatry Research Group (EviPRG), the International Research Collaboration in Clinical Aggression (IRCCA), Sigma Theta Tau International, and the Society for Epidemiologic Research. Professor Iennaco also serves as a Trustee of the Yale-China Association and on the Board of the Connecticut Health Policy Project.

Research Interests/Clinical Practice

Research Interests

Dr. Iennaco’s current research focuses on workplace violence in healthcare settings, aggression measurement and the impact of aggression exposure on healthcare workers. Her interests more broadly include psychiatric epidemiology and occupational mental health. Specific areas include depression, anxiety, stress, suicide, aggression and violence, and the interface between mental and physical health.

Clinical Practice

Professor Iennaco’s clinical work focuses on Young Adults and Adults with complex mental health needs. She works as an outpatient provider at the Connecticut Mental Health Center (CMHC). In the past she has held management and staff roles in adult inpatient psychiatric, admissions, emergency department, day treatment and outpatient settings, and as a visiting mental health nurse.

YCCI Scholar 2010

Project: 07/01/10 - 06/30/12

Effects of Aggression Exposure in Psychiatric Settings on Employee Health and Work Outcomes

Education & Training

  • PhD
    Yale University, Epidemiology (2009)

Departments & Organizations