DR Rebecca Disler

DR Rebecca Disler


  • Chronic Disease Management
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
  • Cognitive impairment screening and management
  • End of life care/Advance care planning
  • Nursing



  • Dr Disler is a Senior Research Fellow in Chronic Disease with a research focus on improving health service delivery for patients with chronic disease, and in particular: supportive, palliative and end-stage care; and addressing influences on health behaviours in chronic disease. She was recently awarded the Early Career Achievement Award from the American Thoracic Society and Maurice Blackburn TSANZ Travel Award. Dr Disler's key current projects include mapping of palliative and end of life services in rural chronic disease and testing a health brain ageing intervention in chronic lung disease. Dr Disler sits on the Thoracic Society ANZ Victorian Executive Board and national Research Sub-Committee, she is also Convenor of the Symptom Support and Palliative care and Evidence Based Medicine Special Interest Groups. Dr Disler also sits on the Program Committee and International Nursing Research Priorities workgroup for the American Thoracic Society. Prior to moving into academia, Dr Disler worked as Respiratory Specialist Nurse at Westminster Primary Care Trust, London; Nurse Unit Manager of the Acute Respiratory and HDU wards at St Mary’s Hospital, London; and trained in intensive care at Royal Melbourne Hospital in Melbourne.   


Member of

  • Australian College of Nursing. Member 2016 -
  • Australian Palliative Care Nursing Association. Member 2016 -
  • American Thoracic Society. Member Programming Committee (NUR); Member International Nursing Research Priorities Workgroup 2013 -
  • European Respiratory Society. Member 2012 -
  • Lung Foundation Australia. Member 2012 -
  • Thoracic Society Australia and New Zealand. Deputy Convenor Evidence Based Medicine Group and Deputy Convenor Respiratory Nursing Group 2012 -


Selected publications


Investigator on

Additional Grant Information

  • 2018-19 Pilot Randomised Controlled Trial: Healthy Brain Ageing Program for People with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Cognitive Impairment (CI) Melbourne University ECR Grant 2017-19 Healthy Brain Ageing Program: Adaption for People with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Cognitive Impairment (CI) Melbourne School of Health Sciences ECR Grant. 2016 Dementia screening program in rural general practice (CI) Emu Creek Health Professionals, GP Consortium. 2015 Emergency department avoidance for breathless management: Review of online self-management resources for breathlessness management (co-investigator) University of Technology Sydney, Faculty of Health. 2015 Development of learning strategies for enrolled nurses in understanding research methodologies and evidence based practice (CI) University of Technology Sydney. 2014 Developing an integrated online learning module that facilitates students in understanding the principles and application of self-management in chronic disease (CI) University of Technology Sydney. 2014 Developing peer teaching strategies to increase student confidence in the academic and clinical setting. (CI) University of Technology Sydney. 2013 Modelling clinical behaviour: Developing student nurses’ ability to understand and provide clinical handover using multimedia teaching platforms (CI) University of Technology Sydney.   


Education and training

  • PhD, University of Technology Sydney 2015
  • MSc, King's College London 2009
  • PGDANP, University of Melbourne 2006
  • BSc, University of Melbourne 2004
  • BN, La Trobe University 2002

Awards and honors

  • Maurice Blackburn/Thoracic Society ANZ Travel award for presentation on the impact of cognitive impairment in chronic lung disease, Maurice Blackburn/Thoracic Society ANZ, 2018
  • ATS Early Career Researcher Achievement Award, American Thoracic Society, 2017
  • Lung Foundation Australia and A Menarini, COPD Travel Award to support presentation at the premier international respiratory conference, Lung Foundation Australia, 2015
  • Abstract award for quality of submitted abstract, ATS conference Denver, USA, American Thoracic Society, 2015
  • Abstract award for quality of submitted abstract, ATS conference San Diego, USA, American Thoracic Society, 2014
  • International travel scholarship to support travel and conference presentation, American Thoracic Society, 2014
  • Citation for significant and sustained contributions to student learning, student engagement and the student experience, University of Technology Sydney, 2013
  • Publication Award for best doctoral paper accepted for publication is this, the top ranked international journal for nursing., International Journal of Nursing Studies, 2012


Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • Dr Disler's research areas are in health service delivery for patients with chronic disease, and in particular: supportive and end-stage care and advance care planning; cognitive impairment as an influence on health behaviours; and innovative approaches to care, including digital technology.