Rebecca Bartlett Ellis, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC

Rebecca Bartlett Ellis, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC

Science of Nursing Care
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Associate Professor

Contact Information

Phone: 317-274-0047
Nursing 122, Indianapolis


PhD, Indiana University
MSN, Indiana University
BSN, Indiana University
BS Business Management, Indiana Wesleyan


Dr. Bartlett Ellis' research aims to produce new knowledge to reduce the complexity of medication self-management and improve adherence in people managing multiple chronic conditions. Her research interests lie in in the use of sensors and mobile health (mHealth) technologies to measure the socio-cultural contexts and biobehavioral mechanisms related to medication-taking behaviors, adherence and treatment efficacy, and intervene to improve clinical outcomes. Dr. Ellis uses a team science approach and collaborates with researchers from medicine, clinical pharmacology, nursing, communications, electrical engineering, computer science, and user-centered design. To date, she has developed the Medication-taking Across the Care Continuum and Adherence-related Outcomes (MACO) Framework, which identifies three contexts in which medication-taking behaviors occur. She has examined provider and system factors that affect patient understanding of medications. Her team is currently developing sensor and connected technology integrated systems to improve medication adherence and treatment outcomes. Dr. Ellis has been funded as a principal investigator and co-investigator through the IUSON Center for Enhancing Quality of life in Chronic Illness and Sigma Theta Tau Alpha Chapter. She is a co-inventor on a patented smart pillbox designed to track medication adherence and communicate adherence data via a smart phone app.

Dr. Ellis brings expertise in symptom management, behavioral theory, and understanding mechanisms of behavior change in chronic illness self-management. Dr. Ellis is a board certified advanced practice clinical nurse specialist and has expertise in influencing healthcare in three spheres of influence 1) the patient/family, 2) the healthcare team, and 3) the healthcare system. Her expertise is grounded in her clinical practice in adult gerontology and research in behavioral science related to self-care and medication management. Since 2005, she has been involved in interdisciplinary research and all of her research experiences have focused on biobehavioral, interdisciplinary projects involving children or adults with acute or chronic illness.

Selected Publications



 Gregory, Virgil L. & Bartlett Ellis, R.J. (In Press). Cognitive-behavioral therapy and buprenorphine for opioid use disorder: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse.

 #Ellis, R. J. B., Hertz, D., Callahan, P., & Ruppar, T. M. (2020). Self-Reported Nonadherence Associated with Pharmacy and Home Medication Management Inconvenience Factors in a US Adult Population.Patient preference and adherence, 14, 529. [Data Based].

Russell, C. L., Hathaway, D., Remy, L. M., Aholt, D., Clark, D., Miller, C., ... & #Ellis, R. J. (2020). Improving medication adherence and outcomes in adult kidney transplant patients using a personal systems approach: SystemCHANGE™ results of the MAGIC randomized clinical trial.American Journal of Transplantation, 20(1), 125-136. [Data Based].

Nebeker, C., Torous, J., & #Bartlett Ellis, R.J. (2019). Building the case for actionable ethics in digital health research supported by artificial intelligence. BMC Medicine, 17(1), 137. [peer reviewed editorial]

Bartlett Ellis, R.J. Hill, J. Kerley, D.K., Ganci, A., Sinha, A.J.  & Russell, C. (2019). The Feasibility of Using a Smart Button Mobile Health System to Self-Track Medication Adherence and Deliver Tailored Short Message Service Text. JMIR Formative Research, 3(2):e13558. DOI:10.2196/13558 PMID: 31237568

Nebeker, C., Ellis, R.J., Torous, J. (2019). Development of a Decision-making Checklist Tool to Support Technology Selection in Digital Health Research. Translational Behavioral Medicine. DOI: 10.1093/tbm/ibz074 Drs. Nebeker and Ellis contributed equally to this manuscript.

Chung, S. Hacker, E.D., Rawl, S., #Ellis, R.J., Bakas, T., Jones, J. & Welch, J. (2019). Using Facebook in Recruiting Kidney Transplant Recipients for a REDCap Study. Western Journal of Nursing Research. DOI: 10.1177/0193945919832600

*+Tunnel, H., Faiola, A., Bolchini, D., Bartlett Ellis R. (2018). Simulated Clinical Encounters Using Patient-Operated mHealth: An Experimental Study to Investigate Patient-Provider Communication. JMIR mHealth and uHealth6(11), e11131. DOI: 10.2196/11131 [Data Based].

*Bartlett Ellis, R.J., Ganci, A., Head, K., & Ofner, S. (2018). Characteristics of Adults Managing Vitamins/Supplements and Prescribed Medications – Who is using, not using and abandoning use of pillboxes? A Descriptive Study. Clinical Nurse Specialist, 32(5), 231-239. DOI: [Data Based].

*+Park, D.Y., Goering, E.M., Head, K.J., & Ellis, R.J.B. (2017). Implications for Training on Smartphone Medication Reminder App Use by Adults with Chronic Conditions:  Pilot Study Applying the Technology Acceptance Model. Journal of Medical Internet Research (JMIR) Formative Research, 1(1):e5. DOI: 10.2196/formative.8027 [Data Based]

*+Bartlett Ellis, R.J., Werskey, K.L, Stangland, R.M., Ofner, S., & Bakoyannis, G. (2017). Using HCAHPS Data to Model Correlates of Medication Understanding at Hospital Discharge. Nursing: Research and Reviews, 2017(7),1-7. DOI: [Data based]

*+Ellis, R.J.B., Knisely, M.R., Boyer, K., & Pike, C. (2017). Pillbox Intervention fidelity in medication adherence research: A systematic review. Nursing Outlook, 65(4), 464 – 476. DOI: [Data Based]

*Welch, J.L. Meek, J., Bartlett Ellis, R.J., Ambuehl, R. & Decker, B.S. (2017). Patterns of healthcare encounters experienced by patients with chronic kidney disease. Journal of Renal Care, 43(4), 209 - 218. DOI: [Data based]

*Welch, J.L., Bartlett Ellis, R.J., Perkins, S.M., Johnson, C.S., Zimmerman, L.M., Russell, C.L., Richards, C., Guise, D.M., & Decker, B. (2016). Knowledge and awareness among patients with chronic kidney disease stage 3.  Nephrology Nursing Journal, 43(6), 513-519 [Data Based]

*Larsen, K.R.,, Michie, S., Hekler, E.B., Bryan Gibson, B., Spruijt-Metz, D., Ahern, D., Cole-Lewis, H., Ellis, R.J.B., Hesse, B., Moser, R.P., Jean Yi, J. (2017). Behavior change interventions: The potential of ontologies for advancing science and practice. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 40(1),6-22. DOI:

*Bartlett Ellis, R.J., & Welch, J.L. (2016). Medication-taking behaviours in chronic kidney disease with multiple chronic conditions: a meta-ethnographic synthesis of qualitative studies. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 26(5-6), 586 – 598. DOI:   [Data based]

*Carter-Harris, L., Ellis, R.B., Warrick, A., & Rawl, S. M. (2016). Beyond traditional newspaper advertisement: Leveraging Facebook targeted advertisement to recruit long-term smokers for research. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 18(6). DOI: [Data based]

*+Bartlett Ellis, R.J., Bakoyannis, G., Haase, J., Boyer, K., & Carpenter, J.S. (2016). Patient perceptions of provider and hospital factors associated with new medication communication. Western Journal of Nursing Research, 38(9), 1139 – 1154. DOI: [Data based]

*Ellis, R.J.B., Carmon, A.F., & Pike, C. (2016). A review of immediacy and implications for provider-patient relationships to support medication management. Patient Preference and Adherence,10, 9-18. DOI: [Data based]

*+Knisely, M.R., Ellis, R.J.B., & Carpenter, J.S. (2015). Complexities of medication management across care transitions: A case report. Clinical Nurse Specialist, 29(5), E1-E7. DOI: [Data based]

*Miller, W.R., Lasiter, S., Ellis, R.B.,, & Buelow, J.M. (2015). Chronic disease self-management: A hybrid concept analysis. Nursing Outlook, 63(2),154-161. DOI: [Data based]

*Bartlett, Ellis, R.J., & Fuehne, J. (2015). Examination of accuracy in the assessment of gastric residual volume: A simulated, controlled study. Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, 39(4), 434-440. DOI: [Data based]

*+Ellis, R.J.B., Connor, U., & Marshall, J. (2014). Development of patient-centric linguistically tailored psycho-educational messages to support nutrition and medication self-management in Type 2 Diabetes: A feasibility study. Patient Preference and Adherence, 2014(8), 1399-1408. DOI: [Data based]

Wilson, D. S. & Bartlett, R. J. (2007). Improved diagnostic yield of bronchoscopy in a community practice: Combination of electromagnetic navigation system and rapid on-site evaluation. Journal of Bronchology & Interventional Pulmonology14(4), 227-232. DOI:
Refereed Abstracts

Bartlett Ellis, R. J.,* & Welch, J. L. (2016). Medication-taking behaviors of people managing multiple chronic conditions and kidney disease: A meta-ethnographic qualitative synthesis. Nephrology Nursing Journal, 43(2).

Lasiter, S., & Ellis, R. B.* (2015). 557: Experience of ICU Survivors with self-managing treatment and symptoms at home. Critical care medicine, 43(12), 141, doi: 10.1097/01.ccm.0000474385.81546.6c

 *Bartlett Ellis, R. J., & Carmon, A. (2014). Evaluation of nurse-patient interactions and nurse communication behaviors in simulations: Feasibility of using the nurse-patient interaction nonverbal immediacy scale. The Conference on Communication, Medicine and Ethics (COMET) 2014. Lugano, Switzerland.

*Connor, U., & Bartlett Ellis, R. J. (2014). Partnering with healthcare providers to listen to patients: Patient-centric diabetes management. The Conference on Communication, Medicine and Ethics (COMET) 2014. Lugano, Switzerland.

*Connor, U., Bartlett Ellis, R. J., & Marshall, J. (2014). Partnering with healthcare providers to listen to patients: Patient-centric diabetes management. University of Kentucky Department of Communications, Lexington KY. Retrieved from

*Butler, D., Bartlett Ellis, R. J., & Smith, B. (2013, November). Team driven palliative care consults and outcomes. Poster presentation at the Center to Advance Palliative Care National Seminar, Dallas, TX.

Bartlett Ellis, R. (2011, October). Feasibility of using the severity of gastrointestinal impairment instrument in clinical practice. In 41st Biennial Convention (29 October-2 November 2011). STTI.



*Eisert, S., Bartlett Ellis, R. J.,  Werskey, K., & Geers, J. (in press). Using national measures of patient's perspectives of healthcare to design and debrief clinical simulations. Nursing Education Perspectives.

*Bartlett Ellis, R. J., Carter-Harris, L., & MacLaughlin, P. (2016). Preparing students for success on exams: Readiness assurance tests in a graduate level statistics course [research brief]. Journal of Nursing Education. doi:10.3928/01484834-20151214-10

*Bartlett Ellis, R. J., Embree, J. L., & Ellis, K. G (2015). A business case framework for planning clinical nurse specialist-led interventions. Clinical Nurse Specialist: The International Journal of Advanced Practice Nursing. doi:10.1097/NUR.0000000000000162



Jeffries, P. R., Battin, J., Franklin, M., Savage, R., Yowler, H., Sims, C., Hall, T., Eisert, S., Brown, S., Werskey, K., Bartlett Ellis, R. J., Everage, T., & Dorsey, L. (2012). Creating a professional development plan for a simulation consortium clinical simulation in nursing. Clinical Simulation in Nursing, 9(6), e183-e189.  doi: 10.1016/j.ecns.2012.02.003.