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Safiyyah Okoye, PhD, MSN, RN

Safiyyah Okoye headshot

Assistant Professor
Health Management and Policy, Drexel FIRST Program


PhD, School of Nursing, Johns Hopkins University
MSN, Family Health Nurse Practitioner, University of Pennsylvania
BSN, Nursing, University of Pennsylvania
BA, History, Barnard College, Columbia University


Safiyyah Okoye, PhD, MSN, RN, is an assistant professor of nursing in Drexel's College of Nursing and Health Professions and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Health Management and Policy. Okoye joined Drexel as part of the Drexel FIRST (Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation) program.

Okoye’s goal as a public health researcher and nurse practitioner is to increase equity in health and function for older adults. After working as a primary care nurse practitioner, she pursued a doctoral degree at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. In her dissertation she investigated associations between sleep health and physical function in low-income, mostly Black older adults with disabilities. She found that objective measures of poor sleep were associated with lower objectively measured physical performance and greater instrumental activity of daily living disability. Another paper from her dissertation examined associations between housing conditions and sleep health in this population and found that exterior housing disrepair was associated with poorer sleep health. Her postdoctoral fellowship at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health in the Epidemiology and Biostatistics of Aging Training Program provided training in conducting epidemiological research on older adult health using large, population-based datasets.

Read Dr. Okoye's complete profile on the College of Nursing and Health Professions' website.

Research Interests

  • Aging
  • Accidental Falls
  • Sleep
  • Health Disparities
  • Home Environment
  • Socioeconomic Factors