Susan Bauer-Wu, PhD, RN, FAAN

Tussi & John Kluge Endowed Professor in Contemplative End of Life Care
Adjunct faculty, Department of Religious Studies
Director, Compassionate Care Initiative

Department: Acute & Specialty Care
Department: cci

Office: CMNEB 3028
Phone: (434) 982-0645
Fax: (434) 243-8372
My personal mission is to make the world a better place through my actions, words and intentions -- and by inspiring others. This has manifested in countless ways throughout my life and guides how I approach each day and the goals I set. I am passionate about teaching students and health care professionals how to bring mindfulness and compassion practices into their daily lives for self-care and in service of others. I am an ardent animal lover and am nourished by nature, the arts, international travel, hiking and running, meditation and yoga, and my fabulous family and friends.

Susan Bauer-Wu’s research, scholarship and teaching focus on the effects of chronic stress and the use of contemplative approaches to bolster stress resilience and sense of well-being. The author of Leaves Falling Gently: Living Fully With Serious & Life-Limiting Illness through Mindfulness, Compassion, & Connectedness, and over 50 peer-reviewed publications, she has garnered approximately $7 million in federal and major foundation funding that has led to thoughtful interventions for those living with cancer and other chronic illnesses, as well as for family and professional caregivers.

With a clinical foundation in oncology, psychiatric and hospice nursing, Dr. Bauer-Wu earned her PhD in nursing (funded by NIH fellowship in psychoneuroimmunology) from Rush University in Chicago and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in psycho-oncology at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire.

Before joining UVA, Dr. Bauer-Wu was an associate professor of nursing at Emory University and the Georgia Cancer Center Coalition Distinguished Scholar. From 2001 to 2007, she was an instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and director of the Cantor Center for Nursing Research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. She has taught professional education programs for the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare, and Society and the Upaya Zen Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico. 

Currently a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Executive Nurse Fellow, immediate past-president of the Society for Integrative Oncology, a senior fellow of the Mind & Life Institute, and a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, Dr. Bauer-Wu has served on review panels for NIH and the American Cancer Society, among others.

Dr. Bauer-Wu also facilitates retreats, workshops, and meditation training programs for health care professionals and people living with illness and their loved ones. She is especially inspired by international work through service, teaching and research in Asia.

Research Focus

Mixed methods; contemplative clinical science; integrative/complementary medicine; clinical trials of mind-body interventions; stress biomarkers.

Clinical Focus

Palliative care; oncology; psycho-oncology; hospice.

Teaching Focus

Stress resilience; mindfulness-based interventions for clinicians and patients and families affected by illness; health care leadership; research methods.


Journal Articles

Yeager, K. A., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2013). Cultural humility: Essential foundation for clinical researchers. Applied Nursing Research, 26(4), 251-256. doi:10.1016/j.apnr.2013.06.008

Collinge, W. Kahn, J., Walton, T., Kozak, L., Bauer-Wu, S., Fletcher, K., Yarnold, P. & Soltysik, R. (2013). Touch, caring, and cancer: Randomized controlled trial of a multimedia caregiver education program. Supportive Care in Cancer, 21(12), 1405-1414. doi:10.1007/s00520-012-1682-6

Smith, M.E., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2012). Traditional Chinese Medicine for cancer-related symptoms. Seminars in Oncology Nursing, 28(1), 64-74.

Bauer-Wu, S., & Decker, G. (2012). Integrative oncology imperative: Nurses need to be informed. Seminars in Oncology Nursing, 28(1), 2-9.

Hoffner, B., Bauer-Wu, S., Hitchcock-Bryan, S., Powell, M., Wolanski, A., & Joffe, S. (2012). “Entering a Clinical Trial: Is it Right For You?”—A randomized study of The Clinical Trials Video and its impact on the informed consent process. Cancer, 118(7), 1877-1883.

Back, A.L., Bauer-Wu, S.M., Rushton, C.H., & Halifax, J. (2009). Compassionate silence in the patient-clinician encounter: A contemplative approach. Journal of Palliative Medicine, 12(2), 1113-1117.

Bauer-Wu, S., Yeager, K., Norris, R.L., Liu, Q., Habin, K.R., Hayes, C., & Jurchak, M. (2009). Communication and planning at the end of life: A survey of women with advanced-stage breast cancer. Journal of Communication in Healthcare, 2(4), 371-376.

Shaha, M., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2009). Early adulthood uprooted: Transitoriness in young women with breast cancer. Cancer Nursing, 32(3), 246-255.

Norris, R., Lin, Q., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2009). Age and functional ability are associated with self-care practices used by women with metastatic breast cancer: An exploratory study. Journal of Nursing and Healthcare of Chronic Illness, 1(1), 71-77.

Sullivan, A.M., Bauer-Wu, S., & Miovic, M. (2009). The Tong Ren Healing System: A survey study. Complementary Health Practice Review, 14, 19-35.

Fonteyn, M.E., Vettese, M., Lancaster, D.R., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2008). Using a team approach to develop a codebook to guide content analysis of expressive writing transcripts. Applied Nursing Research, 21(3), 165-168.

Bauer-Wu, S., Sullivan, A., Rosenbaum, E., Ott, M.J., Powell, M., McLoughlin, M., & Healey, M.W. (2008). Facing the challenges of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation with mindfulness meditation: A pilot study. Integrative Cancer Therapies, 7(2), 62-69.

O’Mara, A., Bauer-Wu, S., Berry, D.M., & Lillington, L. (2007). A needs assessment of oncology nurses’ perceptions of National Cancer Institute (NCI)-Supported Clinical Trial Networks. Oncology Nursing Forum, 34(2), E23-E27.

Gross, A.M., Liu, Q., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2007). Prevalence and predictors of integrative therapies use in advanced-stage breast cancer patients. Journal of Oncology Practice, 3(6), 292-295.

DeSanto-Madeya, S., Bauer-Wu, S., & Gross, A. (2007). Living full lives: Activities of daily living of women with advanced breast cancer. Oncology Nursing Forum, 34(4), 841-846.

Collinge, W., Walton, T., Kahn, J., Bauer-Wu, S., & McCorkle, R. (2007). Couples and cancer: Feasibility of brief instruction in massage and touch therapy to build caregiver efficacy. Journal of the Society of Integrative Oncology, 5(4), 147-154.

Bauer-Wu, S., Barrett, R., & Yeager, K. (2007). Spiritual perspectives and practices at the end-of-life: A review of the major world religions and application to palliative care. Indian Journal of Palliative Care, 13(2), 53-58.

Ott, M.J, Norris, R., & Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2006). Mindfulness meditation for oncology patients: A discussion and critical review. Integrative Cancer Therapies, 5(2), 98-108.

Kornblith, A.B., Dowell, J.M., Herndon, J.E., Rosenberg, S., Engelman, B., Small, E., Morrison, V.A., Atkins, J., Bartlett, N., Reid, T., Bauer-Wu, S.M., Cohen, H.J., Huss, H., Donnelly, J., Zuckerman, E.L., & Holland, J.C. (2006). Telephone monitoring: Early identification of psychological, physical and social distress in advanced stage cancer patients 65 or more years old, for the Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB 119801). Cancer, 107(11), 2706-2714.

Hanser, S.B., Bauer-Wu, S.M., Kubicek, L., Healey, M., Manola, J., Hernandez, M., & Bunnell, C. (2006). Effects of a music therapy intervention on quality of life and distress in women with metastatic breast cancer. Journal of the Society of Integrative Oncology, 4(3), 62-66.

Fonteyn, M., McDonough, K., Salazar, R., & Bauer-Wu, S. (2006). Support for frontline oncology nurses and administrators’ scholarly activities. Oncology Nursing Forum, 33(6), 1061-1063.

Bauer-Wu, S., Epshtein, A., & Reid Ponte, P. (2006). Promoting excellence in nursing research and scholarship in the clinical setting. Journal of Nursing Administration, 36(5), 224-227.

Fonteyn, M. & Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2005). Using qualitative evaluation in a feasibility study to improve and refine a complementary therapy intervention prior to subsequent research. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 11(4), 247-252.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2005). Seeds of hope, blossoms of meaning. Oncology Nursing Forum, 32(5), 927-933.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. & Farran, C.J. (2005). Meaning in life and psycho-spiritual functioning: A comparison of breast cancer survivors and healthy women. Journal of Holistic Nursing, 23(2), 173-190.

Harvey, J., Bauer-Wu, S., Hawks, R., Kelly, K., Laizner, A.M., & Post-White, J. (2005). Consensus statement: Complementary and alternative medicine in pediatric oncology. Seminars in Oncology Nursing, 21(2), 122-124.

Bauer-Wu, S. (2005). Complementary and alternative medicine in pediatric oncology: Critique. Seminars in Oncology Nursing, 21(2), 115-118.

White, M.J., Zapka, J., Bauer-Wu, S., & Alexander, M. (2004). Interdisciplinary collaboration for health care professional education in cancer control. Journal of Cancer Education, 19(1), 37-44.

Partridge, A.H., Hackett, N., Gelman, R., Joffe, S., Bauer-Wu, S.M., Knudsen, K., Collyar, D., Schilsky, R., & Winer, E.P. (2004). Oncology physician and nurse practices and attitudes regarding offering results of trials to study participants. Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 96(8), 629-632.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2004). Psychoneuroimmunology: Physiology. The Japanese Journal of Nursing, 68(4), 336-348.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2004). Psychoneuroimmunology: Clinical applications. The Japanese Journal of Nursing, 68(3), 242-248.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2003). Integrative tumor board: Nursing and quality of life perspective for recently diagnosed prostate cancer. Integrative Cancer Therapies, 2(1), 73-76.

Lin, H.R. & Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2003). Psycho-spiritual well-being in advanced cancer patients: An integrative review. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 44(1), 69-80.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2002). Psychoneuroimmunology Part II: Clinical applications. Journal of Clinical Oncology Nursing, 6(4), 243-246.

Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2002). Psychoneuroimmunology Part I: Physiology. Journal of Clinical Oncology Nursing, 6(3), 167-170.

Critchlow, J. & Bauer-Wu, S. (2002). Long-term care nurses’ perceptions of dehydration in the terminally ill. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 28(12), 31-39.

Rosenberg, H.J., Rosenberg, S.D., Ernstoff, M.S., Wolford, G.L., Amdur, R.J., Elshamy, M.R., Bauer-Wu, S.M., Ahles, T.A., & Pennebaker, J.W. (2002). Expressive disclosure and health outcomes in a prostate cancer population. International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, 32(1), 37-53.

Burrer, C. & Bauer, S.M. (2000). Insights into genetic testing for colon cancer: The NP role. Clinical Excellence for Nurse Practitioners, 4(6), 349-355.

Iwamoto, R.R., Hockenberry-Eaton, M., Bauer, S.M., Meyers, P.A., Post-White, J., & Dahlquist, L.M. (1995). Managing treatment-related side effects of nausea and vomiting. Cancer Practice: A Multidisciplinary Journal of Cancer Care, 3(4), 203-206.

Bauer, S.M. (1994). Psychoneuroimmunology and cancer: An integrated review. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 19(6), 1114-1120.


Bauer-Wu, S. (2011). Leaves Falling Gently: Living Fully With Serious and Life-Limiting Illness Through Mindfulness, Compassion, and Connectedness. New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, CA.

Book Sections

Bauer-Wu, S.M., Cooley, M.E., & Yeager, K. (2011). Clinical nursing research: Current perspectives and future trends. In M.M. Gullatte, (Ed.), Nursing Management and Leadership: Principles and Practice. (2nd edition) (pp. ). Pittsburgh, PA: Oncology Nursing Press

Post-White, J. & Bauer-Wu, S.M. (2010). Immunology (chapter 2). In C.H. Yarbro, C.H. Wujcik, B.H. Gobel, (Ed.), Cancer Nursing: Principles and Practice (pp. 7th edition). Boston: Jones and Bartlett

Post-White, J. & Bauer-Wu, S. (2005). Psychoneuroimmunology: The mind-body connection. In R.M. Carroll Johnson, L.M. Gorman, N.J. Bush (Ed.), Psychosocial Oncology Nursing (pp. 465-486). . Pittsburgh, PA: Oncology Nursing Press

Bauer-Wu, S.M., & Post-White, J. (2005). Immunology. In C.H. Yarbro, M. H. Frogge, M. Goodman, S.L. Groenwald, (Ed.), Cancer Nursing: Principles and Practice. (6th edition) (pp. 26-39). . Boston: Jones and Bartlett

Bauer-Wu, S.M., Cooley, M.E., & Healey, M.W. (2005). Clinical nursing research: current perspectives and future trends. In M. Gullatte, (Ed.), Oncology Nursing Management: Principles and Practice (pp. 553-572). Pittsburgh, PA: Oncology Nursing Press

Post-White, J. & Bauer-Wu, S. (2004). Complementary and Alternative Medical (CAM) Approaches to Management of Cancer and Symptoms. In C. Varricchio, T.B. Ades, P.S. Hinds, M. Pierce (Ed.), A Cancer Sourcebook for Nurses (8th Ed.) (pp. 73-80). Atlanta, GA: American Cancer Society

Bauer, S.M. (2000). Immunology. In C.H. Yarbro, M.H. Frogge, M. Goodman, S.L. Groenwald (Ed.), Cancer Nursing: Principles and Practice. (5th edition) (pp. 35-47). Boston: Jones and Bartlett

LeMarbre, P.J. & Bauer Boyarsky, S.M. (1992). Complications of cancer and cancer treatment. In : J.F. O’Donnell, C.T. Coughlin, P.J. LeMarbre, (Ed.), Oncology for the House Officer (pp. 158-183). Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins

Bauer Boyarsky, S.M. (1992). Rehabilitative aspects in the care of the oncology patient. In : J.F. O’Donnell, C.T. Coughlin, P.J. LeMarbre, (Ed.), Oncology for the House Officer (pp. 246-255). Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins,

Online, Newspaper Article

Fontaine, D., Bauer-Wu, S., & Germano, D. (2014, January 23). The architecture of resilience: Column. The Huffington Post. Retrieved from