Krystyna Barnard
January 24, 2020

Kim Sandler, MD, Assistant Professor of Radiology, was awarded Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Advanced Practice Ambassador Award at the kickoff of the 2020 Advanced Practice Grand Rounds earlier this week. 

The award, presented by the Advanced Practice Grand Rounds and Professional Development Committee, recognizes and honors colleagues who are not advanced practice registered nurses (APRN) or physician assistants (PA) that have exhibited a commitment to collaboration and mentorship of APRNs and PAs.

Dr. Sandler’s nomination was summitted by Alexis Paulson, MSN, APRN, Associate in Radiology, who has worked closely with her the past several years to expand the Vanderbilt Lung Screening Program. Among the 10 nominees submitted for consideration, Dr. Sandler was selected as this year’s recipient. 

“Dr. Sandler exemplifies the Advanced Practice Provider champion,” said Paulson. “She consistently demonstrates the best qualities of a leader of a team and is a joy to work with. Our team is successful because of how she values and includes all of our team members. She respects our work, champions us to leadership, appreciates and utilizes our input, and graciously includes us in her research projects and publications.” 

Dr. Sandler says that advanced practice providers like Alexis are essential because they bring a different, yet complementary, skill set when it comes to providing exceptional patient care. 

“I am truly honored to receive this award,” added Dr. Sandler. “Alexis has years of experience working directly with patients, and brings an invaluable perspective to the Vanderbilt Lung Screening Program. It has been a joy watching her succeed, and I look forward to continuing to support her exceptional work and that of our team members, Shanna Joyner, patient navigator, and Sarah Valenti, RN, MSN, ACNP-BC, who will join us later this year.” 

Dr. Sandler joined Vanderbilt as faculty in the Cardiopulmonary Imaging section in 2015. She has since been named Co-director of the Vanderbilt Lung Screening Program, increasing enrollment in the program from 119 patients in 2015 to 1,868 patients in 2019. She has been the recipient of several awards, including the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Grant, a Lung Cancer SPORE Grant, and VICC Ambassadors Grant. In addition, she has published several articles in leading publications, including JAMA Oncology, the Journal of the American College of Radiology and Academic Radiology.