What attracted you to the health metrics field?
I’m interested in health metrics as a way to improve our understanding of the global health landscape and support more effective interventions. As a biomedical engineering undergrad, I learned how a quantitative skillset and data-driven mindset can make sense of complicated problems and enable innovative solutions, and I wanted to apply these methods to the enormous challenges and disparities of global health. Health is a foundational human right, and rigorous health metrics research brings us closer to achieving a healthy, just, and equitable world.
What work are you doing at IHME?
I currently model hepatitis for the Global Burden of Disease project as part of the Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health team. This involves producing estimates for nonfatal measures of hepatitis like prevalence, incidence, and years lived with disability (YLDs), and fatal measures like deaths and years of life lost (YLLs). Hepatitis, an infectious disease of the liver, leads to over 1 million deaths a year worldwide, whether through liver cancer, cirrhosis, or acute hepatitis itself. Hepatitis presents interesting modelling challenges because there are a variety of severities and transmission pathways, and because diagnosing the correct hepatitis virus as the cause of death is often challenging in the field. Hepatitis has also been recognized as a global health priority through its inclusion in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
How do you think your experience at IHME will contribute to your future work?
My experience at IHME so far has been a great introduction to the field of data science, and I hope to continue in data science in my future work. The techniques for managing and investigating data, building a model, and evaluating model performance are skills that I can take with me to many future endeavors.
GBD 2019 Universal Health Coverage Collaborators. Measuring universal health coverage based on an index of effective coverage of health services in 204 countries and territories, 1990–2019: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2019. The Lancet. 27 August 2020. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30750-9.
GBD 2017 Causes of Death Collaborators. Global, regional, and national age-sex-specific mortality for 282 causes of death in 195 countries and territories, 1980–2017: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017. The Lancet. 8 Nov 2018;392:1736-88. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)32203-7.
GBD 2017 Disease and Injury Incidence and Prevalence Collaborators. Global, regional, and national incidence, prevalence, and years lived with disability for 354 diseases and injuries for 195 countries and territories, 1990–2017: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017. The Lancet. 8 Nov 2018;392:1789–858. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)32279-7.
GBD 2017 DALYs and HALE Collaborators. Global, regional, and national disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) for 359 diseases and injuries and healthy life expectancy (HALE) for 195 countries and territories, 1990–2017: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017. The Lancet. 8 Nov 2018;392:1859–922. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)32335-3.