Meet Our Staff


Christina Nyirati

Chair, Department of Nursing/Director of Nursing Program


Arts and Sciences Center

Phone: (509) 865-8578

Ext: 2334


View Current CV

Courses Taught

  • NURS 103 – Pre-Nursing Pathway
  • NURS 114W – Personal Knowledge Development
  • NURS 206W – Ethical Nursing Practice
  • NURS 316 – Physiological Concepts in Clinical Reasoning II
  • NURS 303 – Special Topics in Nursing – In A Different Voice: The Impact of Gilligan on Nursing Ethics

Education and Degrees

Doctorate: PhD — Major: Nursing — Location: The Ohio State University — Date: 1993
Master's Degree: Master of Science in Nursing — Major: Nursing – FNP — Location: Vanderbilt University — Date: 1978
Bachelor's Degree: Bachelor of Science in Nursing — Major: Nursing — Location: The College of Mount St. Joseph — Date: 1972


Dr. Nyirati is Professor of Nursing at Heritage, where she also serves as the BSN Program Director and Chair of the Department of Nursing.

Dr. Nyirati previously taught at Ohio University and The Ohio State University, where she directed the Family Nurse Practitioner Programs. Dr. Nyirati was awarded the College of Nursing Clinical Educator of the Year at The Ohio State University; the Outstanding Teacher of the Year in the College of Health Sciences and Professions at Ohio University; and the Ohio University LGBT Center Director’s Distinction for Outstanding Faculty Mentor. Dr. Nyirati provided leadership to curriculum development as the chair of the Graduate Curriculum Committee in Nursing at Ohio University, and member of both the Inter-professional (IP) Health Education Curriculum Committees.

Professional Nursing Practice

Dr. Nyirati practiced more than 30 years as a family nurse practitioner (FNP) in primary care of pregnant teens and vulnerable young families, including those in Ohio’s Rural Appalachian Region and in the inner cities of Columbus and Cincinnati. She provided care as an interprofessional faculty team member for over 10 years in the Department of Family Medicine at The Ohio State University. While at Ohio University’s School of Nursing, in 2009 the Ohio Department of Health Patient-Centered Medical Home Initiative (PCMH) appointed Dr. Nyirati to assist southeastern rural Ohio primary care practices in transforming to the PCMH model. She promoted collaborative primary care education across the disciplines of nursing and medicine. The PCMH Initiative subsequently awarded Dr. Nyirati’s family nurse practitioner students full tuition scholarships, along with placements alongside medical students in the transformed PCMHs. This southeastern Ohio PCMH partnership with Nursing and Medicine has become a prototype for interdisciplinary clinical practice education in rural Ohio.

With her interprofessional background of primary care practice and education, Dr. Nyirati contributes now to the development of the Yakima Valley Inter-professional Education and Practice Collaborative (YVIPEC) along with Nursing, Pharmacy, Medicine, Nutrition and and PA faculty from Washington State University, Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences, and Central Washington University. Believing that inter-professional collaboration requires each professional to bring complementary knowledge to the table, Dr. Nyirati also studies how nurses bring nursing science to inter-professional teaching and practice teams.

Special Interests

When not engaged in teaching, directing the Nursing Program, or research, you will find Dr. Nyirati spinning wool or knitting while listening to almost any kind of music, from classical to electronica, punk, rap, or old-time country.

Community Engaged Research

After launching a research trajectory with an epidemiological study of aggregate-specific risks for low birth weight among infants of Appalachian Ohio Teens, Dr. Nyirati focused on preventing poor perinatal outcomes in families with health disparities. She formulated a public health nursing model to predict how targeted public health nursing outcomes reduce low birth weight among Appalachian Ohio infants. Dr. Nyirati used this model to plan ways to reduce the two greatest predictors of low birth weight in Appalachian Ohio – obesity and tobacco use. The Appalachian Rural Health Institute funded Dr. Nyirati’s investigation of culturally-specific smoking cessation among pregnant Appalachian Ohio women, a study on which she continues as co-investigator. She also led a team of researchers to intervene with young childbearing age families with modifiable risks for type 2 diabetes.

When Dr. Nyirati relocated from Ohio in 2013 to east central Washington she became a full partner in Ttawaxt, a community based participatory research group, to correct growing disparity in birth outcomes between infants born to Native American and other families in the Yakima Valley. Believing that inter-professional collaboration requires each professional to bring complementary knowledge to the table, Dr. Nyirati also studies how nurses bring nursing science to inter-professional teaching and practice teams.


Publication: Nyirati, C., Habash, D.L., & Shaffer, L.E.T.
Title: Weight and body fat changes in postpartum depot-medroxyprogesterone acetate users. Contraception, 88(1), 169-176.
Date Published: 7/30/2013

Publication: Nyirati, C.M., Denham, S.A., Raffle, H., & Ware, L.
Title: Where is Family in the Family Nurse Practitioner Program? Results of a U.S. Family Nurse Practitioner Program Survey
Date Published: 7/20/2012

Publication: Sergeev, A. V., & Nyirati, C. M.
Title: Factors Associated with Inadequate Prenatal Care in Women with Pre-Gestational Hypertension
Date Published: 6/12/2012

Organization: Sigma Theta Tau, International Honor Society for Nursing, 1978 – present

Organization: International Family Nursing Association, 2011 – present

Organization: Council on Nursing Education in Washington State (CNEWS), 2013 – present

Organization: Washington State Nurses Association (WSNA), 2014 – present