Shoshana V. Aronowitz, PhD, MSHP, FNP-BC

Shoshana V. Aronowitz, PhD, MSHP, FNP-BC

Assistant Professor, Department of Family and Community Health

Healthcare settings are unfortunately often places where people who use drugs face maltreatment and inequitable care. Nursing practice, research, and advocacy that center the voices and experiences of people who use drugs and people with substance use disorders is vital to ensuring that people who use drugs feel safe and respected in healthcare environments.

My work at Penn Nursing is focused on interventions to increase access to substance use disorder treatment and harm reduction services via innovative delivery models, and preparing students to provide patient and community centered care across diverse settings.

My research and clinical work is focused on improving access to evidence-based substance use disorder treatment and harm reduction services via innovative delivery models, including telehealth and mail-based programs.


I began my teaching career as a psychiatric nursing clinical instructor at the University of Vermont. During my doctoral studies, I assisted in the creation of “Opioids: From Receptors to Epidemic,” a novel transdisciplinary course housed in the School of Nursing. I also provide guest lectures about harm reduction and substance use disorder treatment. I currently teach NUR 547: Scientific Inquiry for Evidence-Based Practice.


My research is broadly focused on equitable access to evidence-based substance use disorder treatment and harm reduction services. I am particularly interested in innovative delivery models – such as mail-based services, mobile units, and telehealth – to meet individuals wherever they are and to promote health in community-based settings rather than hospitals or clinics. My research is heavily influenced by my clinical work as a family nurse practitioner and x-waivered opioid use disorder treatment provider.

I began my research career in 2012 while working as a nurse at the methadone and buprenorphine clinic in Burlington, Vermont. I became interested in the experiences of patients who lost access to their medications when they were incarcerated. I conducted a qualitative study that was subsequently published in the Journal of Correctional Healthcare and cited in a CDC report titled Evidence-based strategies for preventing opioid overdose: What’s working in the United States.

Opportunities to Learn and Collaborate at Penn Nursing

  • Co-investigator on SPARRow: Studying the PhilAdelphia Resilience Project as a Response to Overdose
  • Community Organizer with SOL Collective, a Philadelphia-based harm reduction organization

Selected Career Highlights

  • Center for Health Economics of Treatment Interventions for Substance Use Disorder, HCV, and HIV (CHERI$H) pilot grant recipient
  • Dear Pandemic Founding Member & Instagram Editor
  • Future of Nursing Scholars Robert Wood Johnson Foundation predoctoral fellow

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Fella (L) and Aronowitz (R) debrief in Fagin Hall.

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