Sharon O'Neill

Director, Family Nurse Practitioner Program and Clinical Associate Professor, Dept. of Nursing

Nursing expert, with a penchant for health care regulatory law.

Media Contact
Sharon O'Neill
Phone:  +1 213.8213648
Rank:  Clinical Teaching
Department:  Nursing
Assignment:  Ground

Sharon O'Neill

Director, Family Nurse Practitioner Program and Clinical Associate Professor, Dept. of Nursing

Nursing expert, with a penchant for health care regulatory law.

Media Contact


Sharon O'Neill serves as vice chair of the Department of Nursing, director of the online Family Nurse Practitioner program and associate clinical professor at USC. Her current interest lies in family and children’s health issues across different life stages. She has conducted extensive research on maternal child health programs, hepatitis C in children with hemophilia and cystic fibrosis in children. Prior to joining USC, she served as program coordinator of the Family Nurse Practitioner program at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing for seven years. Her practice initiatives include the establishment of the Sickle Cell Center for Adults at Johns Hopkins. She wrote the center’s bylaws and helped it become an agency for the 2002 Combined Federal Campaign of the Community Health Charities of the National Capital Area. She has also developed training programs for families and staff caring for children requiring long-term mechanical ventilation in rehabilitation, home and school settings. O’Neill earned a diploma in nursing from the Maryland General Hospital School of Nursing, a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Notre Dame of Maryland University, a master’s in nursing from the University of Pennsylvania, a juris doctorate from the University of Baltimore School of Law and a doctorate in nursing practice from The Catholic University of America. She also holds dual post-master certifications as a pediatric primary care nurse practitioner and family nurse practitioner from Johns Hopkins. In addition to her nursing career, O’Neill boasts an extensive legal career focused on health care regulatory law, corporate transactions, medical malpractice and product liability defense. Most recently, she acted as part-time in-house legal counsel to the Kennedy Krieger Institute for more than 13 years.


Catholic University of America

PhD 2013

University of Baltimore School of Law

JD 1992

University of Pennsylvania

MS 1983

Notre Dame of Maryland University

BS 1981

Area of Expertise

  • Coronavirus
  • Healthcare Public Policy
  • Children's Health
  • COVID-19

Industry Experience

  • Program Development
  • Health Care - Services
  • Health Care - Facilities
  • Mental Health Care
  • Medical Devices
  • Medical Equipment / Supplies / Distribution
  • Health and Wellness
  • Health Care - Providers
  • Public Policy


Simulation Education Leader
2010 Awarded by Maryland Faculty Academy for Simulation Teaching in Nursing

Articles & Publications

Exploring APN students' perceptions, self-confidence, and satisfaction with clinical simulation | Nursing Education Perspectives

Kathleen Woodruff, Sharon O'Neill, Benita Jean Walton Moss
2017 The purpose of this study was to explore advanced practice students' perceptions, self-confidence, and satisfaction with clinical simulation as a learning tool. The simulation was part of a health assessment course with 69 students, 25 of whom had no RN experience. On average, students were undecided but trended toward agreement that each key simulation feature was present in the simulation. Students without experience were significantly less likely to feel supported during the simulation and to endorse the appropriateness of the selected problem for the simulation. Upon multiple regression analysis, only fidelity was significantly associated with self-confidence (p = .003).


Advanced practice nursing students: Pilot test of a simulation scenario | Collegian

Benita Walton-Moss, Sharon O’Neill, Wendy Holland, Robin Hull, Lea Marineau
2012 In the current educational environment, increasing numbers of advanced practice nursing (APN) students compete for decreasing numbers of clinical sites where patient safety is paramount. Clinical simulations with high-fidelity human patient simulators provide APN students opportunities to demonstrate clinical skills and judgment in a safe supportive environment. Development, implementation, and preliminary evaluation of a scenario for APN students are discussed. Faculty and student evaluations are reviewed as well as recommendations for future simulations.