Deborah Mayer, PhD, RN, AOCN, FAAN

Adult Health


The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
School of Nursing
Carrington Hall, CB #7460
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7460

Office: 4105 | Online:

Deborah K. Mayer, PhD, RN, AOCN, FAAN is an advanced practice oncology nurse who has consulted with organizations on issues to improve cancer care and has 40 years of cancer nursing practice, education, research, and management experience. Dr. Mayer earned a PhD from the University of Utah, her MSN from Yale University, her BSN from Excelsior College, her Nurse Practitioner Certificate from the University of Maryland, and her diploma from Pennsylvania Hospital School of Nursing.

Dr. Mayer is past president of the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS), was a member of the National Cancer Institute’s National Cancer Advisory Board (a Presidential appointment) and Board of Scientific Advisors. Dr. Mayer was elected as a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing. Recently, she was the Editor for the Oncology Nursing Society’s Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing (CJON) and is active in ONS and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). She currently is Chair-elect of ASCO’s Survivorship Committee. Dr. Mayer was awarded the ONS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015. Dr. Mayer has published over 100 articles and book chapters and lectures internationally on oncology and oncology nursing issues.

Dr. Mayer is a member of the Adult and Geriatric Health Division in the School of Nursing and the UNC Lineberger Director of Cancer Survivorship. She has a clinical practice working with breast cancer survivors. Her program of research focuses on the issues facing cancer survivors and improving cancer care.


  • 1991 First Quality of Life Lectureship, ONS Fall Institute, Atlanta
  • 1992 ONS Distinguished Service Award
  • 1993 Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing
  • 1998 ONS Excellence in Nursing Informatics Award
  • 1998 Debbra Flomenhoft Humanitarian Award, Oncology Section American Physical Therapy Association
  • 2006 Outstanding Doctoral Student Award, University of Utah
  • Mayer, DK, Ratichek, S, Berhe H, Stewart S, McTavish F, Gustafson D, Parsons, SK. (2009). Development of a health-related website for parents of children receiving hematopoietic stem cell transplant: HSCT-CHESS. J Ca Surv, epub ahead, DOI
  • Mayer, DK, Tighiouart, H, Terrin, N. Stewart, S., Peterson, E. Jeruss, S, Parsons, SK. (2009) A Brief Report of Caregiver Needs and Resource Utilization during Pediatric Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation. J Ped Onc Nurs, 26(4), 223-229.
  • Moss, LS, Starbuck, MF, Mayer, DK, Harwood, EB, Glotzer, J. (2009). Trastuzumab Induced Cardiotoxicity. Oncology Nursing Forum, 36(6): 676-685.
  • Campbell, M, Mayer,D, Abernethy A, Carroll S. (2008). Cancer Survivorship. NC Med J, 69(4): 322-324.
  • Mayer, D.K. (2008) Guest Editor. “Health Promotion in Cancer Survivors”. Seminars in Oncology Nursing, 24(3).
  • Parsons, S.K., Saiki-Craighill, S., Mayer, D.K., Sullivan, A.M., Jeruss, S., Terrin, N., Tighiouart, H., Nakagawa, K., Iwata, Y., Hara, J., Grier, H.E., Block, S. (2007) Telling children and adolescents about their cancer diagnosis: cross cultural comparisons between pediatric oncologists in the U.S. and Japan. Psycho-oncology, 16(1): 60-68.
  • Mayer DK, Terrin NC, Menon U, Kreps GL, McCance K, Parsons SK, Mooney KH. (2007) Screening practices in cancer survivors. Journal of Cancer Survivorship, 1(1): 17-26.
  • Mayer DK, Terrin N, Kreps GL, Menon U, McCance K, Parsons SK, Mooney KH. (2006) Cancer survivors’ information seeking behaviors: a comparison of survivors who do and do not seek information about cancer. Patient Educ Couns, 2007 Mar;65(3):342-50. Epub 2006 Oct 9.
  • Mayer DK, Terrin NC, Menon U, Kreps GL, McCance K, Parsons SK, Mooney KH. (2007) Health behaviors in cancer survivors. Oncology Nursing Forum, 2007 May; 34(3): 643-652.
  • Parsons SK, Mayer DK. (2004) Health-related quality of life assessment in hematologic disease. Hematology/Oncology Clinics of North America Dec; 18(6): 1235-48.
  • Morone JF, Mayer DK, Parsons SK (2006) The Transformation Of A Validated Health Related Quality Of Life (HRQL) Instrument Into A Computer Animated Format: The Child Health Ratings Inventories (CHRIs)-Transplant Module. PRO Newsletter Vol 37: 5-8.
  • Mayer DK, Jeruss S, Parsons SK. (2006) Virtual synchronous focus groups. fullpapers/MEDNET-19_MayerDeborahKA_e.pdf

Dr. Mayer’s research interests include cancer survivorship issues and eHealth applications. She was the recipient of an NRSA from the NINR exploring Cancer Survivors Information Seeking and Health Promotion Behaviors. Current research includes:

  • Cancer Survivors’ Information Seeking and Lifestyle Behaviors (R03 CA136077) PI
  • Emergency Department Utilization by Oncology Patients (2KR30903 NC Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute, Travers, PI) Co-Investigator
  • Interactive Cancer Communication Directed Physical Activity Enhancement for Colon Cancer Survivors (2P50CA095817, Gustafson, PI) Project Co-Director and Site PI
  • HSCT-CHESS to Enhance Hematopoietic Transplant Recovery (R01 CA119196, Parsons, PI)