Denise Fassett

UTAS Home Prof Denise Fassett

Denise Fassett

Executive Dean, College of Health and Medicine

Room 405 , Medical Science 1

+61 3 6226 4860 (phone)

+61 3 6226 4862 (fax)


Professor Denise has a unique blend of expertise with a clinical, academic and a health service and regulatory background.  She has lived and worked in all three regions in Tasmania and has been in Launceston for over twenty years.  In her current University role she is living and working in both Launceston and Hobart.

Denise Fassett is a Registered Nurse and the Dean of the Faculty of Health at the University of Tasmania. Her role in the University includes strategic and operational leadership and responsibility for the Faculty which includes the budget and the disciplines of: Psychology; Pharmacy; Medicine, Nursing and Midwifery, Rural Health, Exercise and Sport Science and the Biomedical Sciences. The Faculty also includes Health Service Innovation Tasmania and the Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre. Denise was the former Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Health Science and Head of the School of Nursing and Midwifery.

Denise was a member of the Tasmanian Health Organisation - North (THO-N) Governing Council (GC) and Chair of the THO-N GC Quality and Safety Sub-Committee. She is a current member of the Tasmanian Health System (THS) GC and the THS GC Quality and Safety Sub-Committee.

More recently Denise was appointed to the position as the inaugural Chair of the Health Council of Tasmania with responsibility for planning, stakeholder consultation and engagement and providing high level strategic advice to government.  

Denise was the former Chair of the Nursing Board of Tasmania from 2006 until the Board transitioned into the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme. She is a current member of the Australian Institute of Health Service Management (AIHSM) Board and the Tasmanian Practitioner member on the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA). She is also the Chair of the NMBA Registration and Accreditation Sub-Committee.


  • PhD, University of Technology Sydney, Australia, 2004
  • Master of Nursing, University of Tasmania, 1996
  • Bachelor of Health Science, University of Tasmania, 1989
  • Graduate Diploma in Aged Care Nursing, University of Tasmania, 1989
  • General Nursing Certificate, Royal Hobart Hospital, 1977


Committee associations

  • Health Council of Tasmania (Chair)
  • THS Governing Council (member)
  • THS GC Quality and Safety Sub-Committee (Chair)
  • Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (member)
  • NMBA Registration and Accreditation Sub-Committee (Chair)
  • Australian Institute of Health Service Management Board (member)
  • Menzies Institute for Medical Research Board (member)
  • University of Tasmania Senior Management Team (member)
  • Faculty of Health Management Team (Chair)
  • Academic Senate (member)

View more on Professor Denise Fassett in WARP


  • Dementia
  • Translational neurosciences
  • Prevention and management of chronic disease
  • Healthcare and support services
  • Other higher education

Fields of Research

  • Mental health nursing (420504)
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander public health and wellbeing (450417)
  • Health services and systems (420399)
  • Specialist studies in education (390499)
  • Medical ethics (500106)
  • Aged care nursing (420502)
  • Aged health care (420301)
  • Medicine, nursing and health curriculum and pedagogy (390110)

Research Objectives

  • Nursing (200307)
  • Mental health services (200305)
  • Allied health therapies (excl. mental health services) (200301)
  • Mental health (200409)
  • Health status (incl. wellbeing) (200407)
  • Other health (209999)
  • Management, resources and leadership (160204)
  • Palliative care (200309)


Total publications


Journal Article

(5 outputs)
2018Santangelo P, Procter NG, Fassett D, 'Mental health nursing: Daring to be different, special and leading recovery-focused care?', International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 27, (1) pp. 258-266. ISSN 1445-8330 (2018) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1111/inm.12316 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 28Web of Science - 28

Co-authors: Santangelo P; Procter NG


2017Santangelo P, Proctor N, Fassett D, 'Seeking and defining the 'special' in specialist mental health nursing: A theoretical construct', International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 27, (1) pp. 267-275. ISSN 1445-8330 (2017) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1111/inm.12317 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 18Web of Science - 18

Co-authors: Santangelo P


2017Terry K, Stirling C, Bull R, Fassett D, 'An overview of the ways nurses understand and utilise the existing Australian Competency Standards for Registered Nurses', Collegian, 24, (2) pp. 109-116. ISSN 1322-7696 (2017) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1016/j.colegn.2015.10.003 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 4Web of Science - 3

Co-authors: Terry K; Stirling C; Bull R


2016Lees D, Procter N, Fassett D, Handley C, 'Involving mental health service users in suicide-related research: a qualitative inquiry model', Nurse Researcher, 23, (4) pp. 30-34. ISSN 1351-5578 (2016) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.7748/nr.23.4.30.s7 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 1

Co-authors: Lees D; Handley C


2014Lees D, Procter N, Fassett D, 'Therapeutic engagement between consumers in suicidal crisis and mental health nurses', International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 23, (4) pp. 306-315. ISSN 1445-8330 (2014) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1111/inm.12061 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 42Web of Science - 42

Co-authors: Lees D



(1 outputs)
1998Fassett D, Gallagher MR, 'Just a Head: stories in a body', Allen & Unwin, Sydney, pp. 148. ISBN 1-86448-565-5 (1998) [Authored Research Book]

[eCite] [Details]

Conference Publication

(2 outputs)
2013Lees DB, Fassett D, Procter N, 'Research and clinical engagement with consumers who have lived experience of suicidal crisis', Australian College of Mental Health Nursing 39th International Mental Health Nursing Conference - Collaboration and Partnership in Mental Health Nursing, 22-24 October, Pan Pacific Hotel, Perth, Western Australia, pp. 16. (2013) [Conference Extract]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Lees DB

2010Lees DB, Fassett D, Procter NG, 'A critical exploration of interactions and engagement between people in suicidal crisis and registered nurses within a public mental health service', 4th Asia Pacific Regional Conference of the International Association for Suicide Prevention, 17 - 20 November, Brisbane (2010) [Conference Extract]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Lees DB; Procter NG

Grants & Funding

Funding Summary

Number of grants


Total funding



Research Enhancement Program 2017 (2017)$135,000
University of Tasmania ($135,000)
Grant- Research Enhancement Program
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Peterson GM; Fassett D
Establishing Teaching Nursing Homes to Provide Quality Inter-Professsional Clinical Placements in Aged Care (2011 - 2013)$303,288
Department of Health and Aged Care ($303,288)
Grant-Aged Care Nursing Clinical Placements
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Robinson AL; Lea EJ; Bramble MD; Marlow AH; Jones JJ; Andrews SM; McInerney F; Fassett D
2011 - 2013

Research Supervision




PhDWhat Do Parents and Parenting Health Professionals Understand by the Question: "What Creates Perinatal Mental Health?"
Candidate: Robyn Gail Kelly
PhDWhat's special about mental health nursing? Being in the here and now, side by side, co-constructing care: A substantive grounded theory of recovery-focused mental health nursing
Candidate: Pietro Santangelo
PhDThe Competency Landscape: A critical realist exploration of the ways nurses undertand and utilise competency standards
Candidate: Kathryn Jane Terry
PhDTherapeutic Engagement Between People Experiencing Suicidal Crisis and Mental Health Nurses
Candidate: David Bruce Lees