Judith Haber headshot

Judith Haber


Ursula Springer Leadership Professor in Nursing

1 212 998 9020

433 First Avenue
Room 642
New York, NY 10010
United States

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Professional overview

Dr. Judith Haber, PhD, APRN, BC, FAAN is the Ursula Springer Leadership Professor in Nursing at the NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing. Dr. Haber has been an internationally recognized leader in psychiatric nursing for the past 40 years.  She was the author of the award winning, classic textbook, Comprehensive Psychiatric Nursing, published for 8 editions and translated into 5 languages.  Consistent with the current emphasis on integrating behavioral health in primary care, Dr. Haber’s has been a longtime advocate of the integration of mental health and physical health and published widely on this topic. She is also a recognized expert in evidence-based practice and co-author of an award winning nursing research text, Nursing Research: Methods and Critical Appraisal for Evidence-based Practice, now in its 8th edition and translated into five languages. 

Dr. Haber is the recipient of numerous awards including:  the 1995 and 2005 Psychiatric Nurse of the Year Award from the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, the 1998 ANA Hildegarde Peplau Award, Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, as well as Distinguished Alumnae Awards from Adelphi University and NYU College of Nursing.  She is the 2011 recipient of the NYU Distinguished Teaching Award, the 2014 NYU Alumni Meritorious Service Award, and the 2015 Sigma theta Tau International Marie Hippensteel Lingeman Award for Excellence in Nursing Practice.

Dr. Haber is the NYU Meyers leader of interprofessional education and practice, with a special focus on oral-systemic health, collaborating with interprofessional partners at NYU College of Dentistry and School of Medicine and co-chairs the NYU Interprofessional Research, Education and Practice (IPREP) Steering Committee. She is the Executive Director of a national nursing oral health initiative, the Oral Health Nursing Education Practice (OHNEP) Program, funded by the DentaQuest and Washington Dental Service Foundations, and the Principal Investigator on the HRSA-funded program, Teaching Oral-Systemic Health (TOSH). Dr. Haber is the lead author of the landmark (2015) AJPH publication, Putting the Mouth Back in the Head:  HEENT to HEENOT.

Dr. Haber is a member of the Steering Committee of the National Interprofessional Initiative on Oral Health (NIIOH) and was a member of the HRSA Expert Panel that developed the 2014 Interprofessional Oral Health Core Competencies for Primary Care Providers. She is a member of the Technical Expert Panel that developed the 2015 Qualis Health White Paper, Oral Health: An Essential Component of Primary Care.  Dr. Haber is a member of: the Pacific Dental Services Oral-Systemic Health Advisory Board,  the DentaQuest Institute More Cares Program National Advisory Committee, the Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC) National Steering Committee on Shared Principles, and the New York State Nurse Family Partnership Advisory Board.  Dr. Haber has consulted, presented and published widely on interprofessional education and practice as well as oral-systemic health issues.


PhD(1984) - New York University
MA(1967) - New York University
BSN(1965) - Adelphi University

Honors and awards

Distinguished Teaching Award, New York University (2011)
Excellence in Cancer Nursing Research Award, Oncology Nursing Society (2009)
Distinguished Alumni Award, NYU College of Nursing (2008)
Psychiatric Nurse of the Year Award, American Psychiatric Nurses Association (2005)
Excellence in Research Award, American Psychiatric Nurses Association (2005)


Mental health

Professional membership

American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
American Nurses Association
Connecticut Nurses Association
Connecticut Society of Nurse Psychotherapists
Council of Connecticut Mental Health Providers
New York State Nurses Association
American Psychiatric Nurses Association
Sigma Theta Tau-Alpha Omega and Upsilon Chapters
National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculty



The Impact of Oral-Systemic Health on Advancing Interprofessional Education Outcomes

Haber, J., Hartnett, E., Allen, K., Crowe, R., Adams, J., Bella, A., Riles, T., & Vasilyeva, A. (2017). Journal of Dental Education, 81(2), 140-148.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of an interprofessional education (IPE) clinical simulation and case study experience, using oral-systemic health as the clinical population health example, for nurse practitioner/midwifery, dental, and medical students' self-reported attainment of interprofessional competencies. A pretest-posttest evaluation method was employed, using data from the Interprofessional Collaborative Competency Attainment Scale (ICCAS) completed by two large cohorts of nurse practitioner/midwifery, dental, and medical students at one U.S. university. Data from faculty facilitators were collected to assess their perceptions of the value of exposing students to interprofessional clinical simulation experiences focused on oral-systemic health. The results showed that self-reported interprofessional competencies measured by the ICCAS improved significantly from pre- to posttest for all three student types in 2013 (p<0.001) and 2014 (p<0.001). Faculty facilitators reported that the IPE clinical simulation experiences were valuable and positively influenced interprofessional communication, collaboration, patient communication, and student understanding of patient care roles. These results suggest that the Teaching Oral-Systemic Health Program Interprofessional Oral-Systemic Health Clinical Simulation and Case Study Experience was effective as a standardized, replicable curriculum unit using oral-systemic health as a population health exemplar to teach and assess interprofessional competencies with nurse practitioner/midwifery, dental, and medical students.

Oral Health in Pregnancy

Hartnett, E., Haber, J., Krainovich-Miller, B., Bella, A., Vasilyeva, A., & Lange Kessler, J. (2016). JOGNN - Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing, 45(4), 565-573. 10.1016/j.jogn.2016.04.005
Oral health is crucial to overall health. Because of normal physiologic changes, pregnancy is a time of particular vulnerability in terms of oral health. Pregnant women and their providers need more knowledge about the many changes that occur in the oral cavity during pregnancy. In this article we describe the importance of the recognition, prevention, and treatment of oral health problems in pregnant women. We offer educational strategies that integrate interprofessional oral health competencies.

Haber et al. respond

Haber, J., Hartnett, E., Allen, K., Hallas, D., Dorsen, C., Lange-Kessler, J., Lloyd, M., Thomas, E., & Wholihan, D. (2015). American Journal of Public Health, 105(5), e3-e4. 10.2105/AJPH.2015.302648

Patterns of obesity and lymph fluid level during the first year of breast cancer treatment: A prospective study

Fu, M. R., Axelrod, D., Guth, A. A., Fletcher, J., Qiu, J. M., Scagliola, J., Kleinman, R., Ryan, C. E., Chan, N., & Haber, J. (2015). Journal of Personalized Medicine, 5(3), 326-340. 10.3390/jpm5030326
Obesity is one of the risk factors for developing lymphedema following breast cancer treatment. We prospectively enrolled 140 women and followed the participants for 12 months after surgery to investigate patterns of obesity and lymph fluid level in the first year of cancer treatment. Electrical bioimpedance devices were used to measure weight, BMI, and percent of body fat as well as lymph fluid level. General instructions were given to the participants on maintaining pre-surgery weight. Among the 140 participants, 136 completed the study with 2.9% attrition. More than 60% of the participants were obese (30.8%) or overweight (32.4%), while only two participants were underweight and about 35% had normal weight. This pattern of obesity and overweight was consistent at 4–8 weeks and 12 months post-surgery. At 12 months post-surgery, the majority of the women (72.1%) maintained pre-surgery weight and 15.4% had >5% weight loss; 12.5% of the women increase >5% of their weight. Significantly more patients in the obesity group had lymphedema defined by L-Dex ratio >7.1 than those in the normal/underweight and overweight group at pre-surgery and 4–8 weeks post-surgery. There was a trend of more patients in the obesity group had L-Dex ratio >7.1 at 12 months post-surgery. Obesity and overweight remain among women at the time of cancer diagnosis and the patterns of obesity and overweight continue during the first year of treatment. General instructions on having nutrition-balanced and portion-appropriate diet and physical activities daily or weekly can be effective to maintain pre-surgery weight.

Putting the mouth back in the head: HEENT to HEENOT

Haber, J., Hartnett, E., Allen, K., Hallas, D., Dorsen, C., Lange-Kessler, J., Lloyd, M., Thomas, E., & Wholihan, D. (2015). American Journal of Public Health, 105(3), 437-441. 10.2105/AJPH.2014.302495
Improving oral health is a leading population health goal; however, curricula preparing health professionals have a dearth of oral health content and clinical experiences.We detail an educational and clinical innovation transitioning the traditional head, ears, eyes, nose, and throat (HEENT) examination to the addition of the teeth, gums, mucosa, tongue, and palate examination (HEENOT) for assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of oral-systemic health. Many New York University nursing, dental, and medical faculty and students have been exposed to interprofessional oral health HEENOT classroom, simulation, and clinical experiences. This was associated with increased dental-primary care referrals.This innovation has potential to build interprofessional oral health workforce capacity that addresses a significant public health issue, increases oral health care access, and improves oral-systemic health across the lifespan.

Symptom report in detecting breast cancer-related lymphedema

Fu, M. R., Axelrod, D., Cleland, C. M., Qiu, Z., Guth, A. A., Kleinman, R., Scagliola, J., & Haber, J. (2015). Breast Cancer: Targets and Therapy, 7, 345-352. 10.2147/BCTT.S87854
Breast cancer-related lymphedema is a syndrome of abnormal swelling coupled with multiple symptoms resulting from obstruction or disruption of the lymphatic system associated with cancer treatment. Research has demonstrated that with increased number of symptoms reported, breast cancer survivors’ limb volume increased. Lymphedema symptoms in the affected limb may indicate a latent stage of lymphedema in which changes cannot be detected by objective measures. The latent stage of lymphedema may exist months or years before overt swelling occurs. Symptom report may play an important role in detecting lymphedema in clinical practice. The purposes of this study were to: 1) examine the validity, sensitivity, and specificity of symptoms for detecting breast cancer-related lymphedema and 2) determine the best clinical cutoff point for the count of symptoms that maximized the sum of sensitivity and specificity. Data were collected from 250 women, including healthy female adults, breast cancer survivors with lymphedema, and those at risk for lymphedema. Lymphedema symptoms were assessed using a reliable and valid instrument. Validity, sensitivity, and specificity were evaluated using logistic regression, analysis of variance, and areas under receiver operating characteristic curves. Count of lymphedema symptoms was able to differentiate healthy adults from breast cancer survivors with lymphedema and those at risk for lymphedema. A diagnostic cutoff of three symptoms discriminated breast cancer survivors with lymphedema from healthy women with a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 97% (area under the curve =0.98). A diagnostic cutoff of nine symptoms discriminated at-risk survivors from survivors with lymphedema with a sensitivity of 64% and a specificity of 80% (area under the curve =0.72). In the absence of objective measurements capable of detecting latent stages of lymphedema, count of symptoms may be a cost-effective initial screening tool for detecting lymphedema.

Building a culture of collaboration: Interprofessional education and practice

Haber, J. (2014). Journal of the Academy of Distinguished Educators, 2, 12-14.

Interprofessional education between dentistry and nursing: the NYU experience.

Haber, J., Spielman, A. I., Wolff, M., & Shelley, D. (2014). Journal of the California Dental Association., 42(1), 44-51.
In 2005, New York University Colleges of Dentistry and Nursing formed an organizational partnership to create a unique model of interprofessional education, research, service and practice. This paper describes the first eight years of experience, from the early reaction of the public to the partnership, to examples of success and past and current challenges.

Nursing research: Methods and critical appraisal for evidence-based practice

LoBiondo-Wood, G., & Haber, J. (2014). Mosby Elsevier.

Proactive Approach to Lymphedema Risk Reduction: A Prospective Study

Fu, M. R., Axelrod, D., Guth, A. A., Cartwright, F., Qiu, Z., Goldberg, J. D., Kim, J., Scagliola, J., Kleinman, R., & Haber, J. (2014). Annals of Surgical Oncology, 21(11), 3481-3489. 10.1245/s10434-014-3761-z
Background: Advances in cancer treatments continue to reduce the incidence of lymphedema. Yet, many breast cancer survivors still face long-term postoperative challenges as a result of developing lymphedema. The purpose of this study was to preliminarily evaluate The Optimal Lymph Flow program, a patient-centered education and behavioral program focusing on self-care strategies to enhance lymphedema risk reduction by promoting lymph flow and optimize body mass index (BMI). Methods: A prospective, longitudinal, quasi-experimental design with repeated-measures was used. The study outcomes included lymph volume changes by infrared perometer, and BMI by a bioimpedance device at pre-surgery baseline, 2–4 weeks after surgery, 6-month and 12-month follow-up. A total of 140 patients were recruited and participated in The Optimal Lymph Flow program; 134 patients completed the study with 4 % attrition rate. Results: Fifty-eight percent of patients had axillary node dissection and 42 % had sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB). The majority (97 %) of patients maintained and improved their preoperative limb volume (LV) and BMI at the study endpoint of 12 months following cancer surgery. Cumulatively, two patients with SLNB and two patients with axillary lymph node dissection had measurable lymphedema (>10 % LV change). At the 12-month follow-up, among the four patients with measurable lymphedema, two patients’ LV returned to preoperative level without compression therapy but by maintaining The Optimal Lymph Flow exercises to promote daily lymph flow. Conclusions: This educational and behavioral program is effective in enhancing lymphedema risk reduction. The study provided initial evidence for emerging change in lymphedema care from treatment-focus to proactive risk reduction.