What attracted you to the health metrics field?
It was through the lens of biology that I first fell in love with health and medicine. My belief in the power of basic science to fuel impactful change led me to several formative research experiences in the lab. When I started college, I was still fixated on this idea, but my experiences as an undergraduate ultimately reshaped the lens through which I understood health. The liberal arts environment showed me that by engaging with issues in interdisciplinary ways, we could often develop more creative, more meaningful solutions. In line with this perspective, in addition to studying neuroscience, I took courses in health economics, race economics, and mental health policy. These varying perspectives gave me the framework to understand that the interplay of metrics, public policy, and science collectively contributed to the “health machine.”
As I continued with research in college, I began to question the broader implications of my work through this new lens. How are new treatments implemented on a global level? Why is it that many global health issues can be prevented and treated with our current tools, yet so many people still suffer? I began to see that that the solutions to these problems do not exist solely within test tubes, but they also require better understanding of the health system as a whole – only then will the development of newer treatments have the broadest and most meaningful impact. I saw the field of health metrics as a rapidly developing discipline that could play a key role in this understanding and immediately knew that it was something I wanted to take part in.
What work are you doing at IHME?
I am working on the covariates research team. Covariates, which include anything from cigarette use to annual inches of rainfall, are indicators of key aspects of health and thus play a role in several different projects across IHME. These measures are crucial for estimating and predicting health indicators within and across countries and ultimately contribute to our understanding of the pathways of disease.
The work plays a key role in the modeling process of the Global Burden of Disease study, but it also lends itself to the study of several covariates at an individual level. For example, I am working on the Health Systems Access project, which seeks to better understand the state of immunization and maternal care coverage across counties. This information can be used as a tool to better guide relevant policies that will impact health at the individual level.
How do you think your experience at IHME will contribute to your future work?
I wish to develop the theoretical basis and quantitative skills to contribute to our understanding of the health system and its key issues, and IHME is the perfect environment to help me accomplish this. The Post-Bachelor Fellowship is an opportunity to learn and integrate my interests in medicine, metrics, and policy alongside peers and mentors from various backgrounds. I ultimately wish to carry the tools and perspectives I develop at IHME as I pursue medical school, so that I will one day, as a doctor, be better equipped to address the root causes of disease.
Forouzanfar MH, Liu P, Roth GA, Ng M, Biryukov S, Marczak L, Alexander L, Estep K, Abate KH, Akinyemiju TF, Ali R, Alvis-Guzman N, Azzopardi P, Banerjee A, Bärnighausen T, Basu A, Bekele T, Bennett DA, Biadgilign S, Catalá-López F, Feigin VL, Fernandes JC, Fischer F, Gebru AA, P Gona, Gupta R, Hankey GJ, Jonas JB, Judd SE, Khang YH, Khosravi A, Kim YJ, Kimokoti RW, Kokubo Y, Kolte D, Lopez A, Lotufo PA, Malekzadeh R, Melaku YA, Mensah GA, Misganaw A, Mokdad AH, Moran AE, Nawaz H, Neal B, Ngalesoni FN, Ohkubo T, Pourmalek F, Rafay A, Rai RK, Rojas-Rueda D, Sampson UK, Santos IS, Sawhney M, Schutte AE, Sepanlou SG, Shifa GT, Shiue I, Tedla BA, Thrift AG, Tonelli M, Truelsen T, Tsilimparis N, Ukwaja KN, Uthman OA, Vasankari T, Venketasubramanian N, Vlassov VV, Vos T, Westerman R, Yan LL, Yano Y, Yonemoto N, Zaki ME, Murray CJL. Global burden of hypertension and systolic blood pressure of at least 110 to 115 mmHg, 1990–2015. JAMA. 2017 Jan 10;317(2):165-182. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.19043.
GBD 2015 Risk Factors Collaborators. Global, regional, and national comparative risk assessment of 79 behavioral, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or clusters of risks, 1990–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Oct 7; 388:1659–1724.
GBD 2015 DALYs and HALE Collaborators. Global, regional, and national disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs) for 315 diseases and injuries and healthy life expectancy (HALE), 1990–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Oct 7; 388:1603–1658.
GBD 2015 Maternal Mortality Collaborators. Global, regional, and national levels of maternal mortality, 1990–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Oct 7; 388:1775–1812.
GBD 2015 Mortality and Causes of Death Collaborators. Global, regional, and national life expectancy, all-cause mortality, and cause-specific mortality for 249 causes of death, 1980–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Oct 7; 388:1459–1544.
GBD 2015 Child Mortality Collaborators. Global, regional, national, and selected subnational levels of stillbirths, neonatal, infant, and under-5 mortality, 1980–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Oct 7; 388:1725–1774.
Lim SS, Allen K, Bhutta ZA, Dandona L, Forouzanfar MH, Fullman N, Gething PW, Goldberg EM, Hay SI, Holmberg M, Kinfu Y, Kutz MJ, Larson HJ, Liang X, Lopez AD, Lozano R, McNellan CR, Mokdad AH, Mooney MD, Naghavi M, Olsen HE, Pigott DM, Salomon JA, Vos T, Wang H, Abajobir AA*, Abate KH*, Abbafati C*, Abbas KM*, Abd-Allah F*, Abdulle AM*, Abraham B*, Abubakar I*, Abu-Raddad LJ*, Abu-Rmeileh NME*, Abyu GY*, Achoki T*, Adebiyi AO*, Adedeji IA*, Afanvi KA*, Afshin A*, Agarwal A*, Agrawal A*, Ahmad Kiadaliri A*, Ahmadieh H*, Ahmed KY*, Akanda AS*, Akinyemi RO*, Akinyemiju TF*, Akseer N*, Al-Aly Z*, Alam K*, Alam U*, Alasfoor D*, AlBuhairan FS*, Aldhahri SF*, Aldridge RW*, Alemu ZA*, Ali R*, Alkerwi A*, Alkhateeb MAB*, Alla F*, Allebeck P*, Allen C*, Al-Raddadi R*, Altirkawi KA*, Alvarez Martin E*, Alvis-Guzman N*, Amare AT*, Amberbir A*, Amegah AK*, Amini H*, Ammar W*, Amrock SM*, Andersen HH*, Anderson BO*, Anderson GM*, Antonio CAT*, Anwari P*, Ärnlöv J*, Artaman A*, Asayesh H*, Asghar RJ*, Atique S*, Avokpaho EFGA*, Awasthi A*, Ayala Quintanilla BP*, Azzopardi P*, Bacha U*, Badawi A*, Balakrishnan K*, Banerjee A*, Barac A*, Barber R*, Barker-Collo SL*, Bärnighausen T*, Barrero LH*, Barrientos-Gutierrez T*, Basu S*, Bayou TA*, Bazargan-Hejazi S*, Beardsley J*, Bedi N*, Beghi E*, Béjot Y*, Bell ML*, Bello AK*, Bennett DA*, Bensenor IM*, Benzian H*, Berhane A*, Bernabé E*, Bernal OA*, Betsu BD*, Beyene AS*, Bhala N*, Bhatt S*, Biadgilign S*, Bienhoff KA*, Bikbov B*, Binagwaho A*, Bisanzio D*, Bjertness E*, Blore J*, Bourne RRA*, Brainin M*, Brauer M*, Brazinova A*, Breitborde NJK*, Broday DM*, Brugha TS*, Buchbinder R*, Butt ZA*, Cahill LE*, Campos-Nonato IR*, Campuzano JC*, Carabin H*, Cárdenas R*, Carrero JJ*, Carter A*, Casey D*, Caso V*, Castañeda-Orjuela CA*, Castillo Rivas J*, Catalá-López F*, Cavalleri F*, Cecílio P*, Chang H*, Chang J*, Charlson FJ*, Che X*, Chen AZ*, Chiang PP*, Chibalabala M*, Chisumpa VH*, Jasmine Choi JJ*, Chowdhury R*, Christensen H*, Ciobanu LG*, Cirillo M*, Coates MM*, Coggeshall M*, Cohen AJ*, Cooke GS*, Cooper C*, Cooper LT*, Cowie BC*, Crump JA*, Damtew SA*, Dandona R*, Dargan PI*, das Neves J*, Davis AC*, Davletov K*, de Castro EF*, De Leo D*, Degenhardt L*, Del Gobbo LC*, Deribe K*, Derrett S*, Des Jarlais DC*, Deshpande A*, deVeber GA*, Dey S*, Dharmaratne SD*, Dhillon PK*, Ding EL*, Dorsey ER*, Doyle KE*, Driscoll TR*, Duan L*, Dubey M*, Duncan BB*, Ebrahimi H*, Endries AY*, Ermakov SP*, Erskine HE*, Eshrati B*, Esteghamati A*, Fahimi S*, Farid TA*, Farinha CSS*, Faro A*, Farvid MS*, Farzadfar F*, Feigin VL*, Felicio MM*, Fereshtehnejad S*, Fernandes JG*, Fernandes JC*, Ferrari AJ*, Fischer F*, Fitchett JRA*, Fitzmaurice C*, Foigt N*, Foreman K*, Fowkes FGR*, Franca EB*, Franklin RC*, Fraser M*, Friedman J*, Frostad J*, Fürst T*, Gabbe B*, Garcia-Basteiro AL*, Gebre T*, Gebrehiwot TT*, Gebremedhin AT*, Gebru AA*, Gessner BD*, Gillum RF*, Ginawi IAM*, Giref AZ*, Giroud M*, Gishu MD*, Godwin W*, Gona P*, Goodridge A*, Gopalani SV*, Gotay CC*, Goto A*, Gouda HN*, Graetz N*, Greenwell KF*, Griswold M*, Guo Y*, Gupta R*, Gupta R*, Gupta V*, Gutiérrez RA*, Gyawali B*, Haagsma JA*, Haakenstad A*, Hafezi-Nejad N*, Haile D*, Hailu GB*, Halasa YA*, Hamadeh RR*, Hamidi S*, Hammami M*, Hankey GJ*, Harb HL*, Haro JM*, Hassanvand MS*, Havmoeller R*, Heredia-Pi* IB, Hoek HW*, Horino M*, Horita N*, Hosgood HD*, Hoy DG*, Htet AS*, Hu G*, Huang H*, Iburg KM*, Idrisov BT*, Inoue M*, Islami F*, Jacobs TA*, Jacobsen KH*, Jahanmehr M*, Jakovljevic MB*, James P*, Jansen HAFM*, Javanbakht M*, Jayatilleke AU*, Jee SH*, Jeemon P*, Jha V*, Jiang Y*, Jibat T*, Jin Y*, Jonas JB*, Kabir Z*, Kalkonde Y*, Kamal R*, Kan H*, Kandel A*, Karch A*, Karema CK*, Karimkhani C*, Karunapema P*, Kasaeian A*, Kassebaum NJ*, Kaul A*, Kawakami N*, Kayibanda JF*, Keiyoro PN*, Kemmer L*, Kemp AH*, Kengne AP*, Keren A*, Kesavachandran CN*, Khader YS*, Khan AR*, Khan EA*, Khan G*, Khang YH*, Khoja TAM*, Khosravi A*, Khubchandani J*, Kieling C*, Kim C*, Kim D*, Kim S*, Kim YJ*, Kimokoti RW*, Kissoon N*, Kivipelto M*, Knibbs LD*, Kokubo Y*, Kolte D*, Kosen S*, Kotsakis GA*, Koul PA*, Koyanagi A*, Kravchenko M*, Krueger H*, Kuate Defo B*, Kuchenbecker RS*, Kuipers EJ*, Kulikoff XR*, Kulkarni VS*, Kumar GA*, Kwan GF*, Kyu HH*, Lal A*, Lal DK*, Lalloo R*, Lam H*, Lan Q*, Langan SM*, Larsson A*, Laryea DO*, Latif AA*, Leasher JL*, Leigh J*, Leinsalu M*, Leung J*, Leung R*, Levi M*, Li Y*, Li Y*, Lind M*, Linn S*, Lipshultz SE*, Liu PY*, Liu S*, Liu Y*, Lloyd BK*, Lo L*, Logroscino G*, Lotufo PA*, Lucas RM*, Lunevicius R*, Magdy Abd El Razek M*, Magis-Rodriguez C*, Mahdavi M*, Majdan M*, Majeed A*, Malekzadeh R*, Malta DC*, Mapoma CC*, Margolis DJ*, Martin RV*, Martinez-Raga J*, Masiye F*, Mason-Jones AJ*, Massano J*, Matzopoulos R*, Mayosi BM*, McGrath JJ*, McKee M*, Meaney PA*, Mehari A*, Mekonnen AB*, Melaku YA*, Memiah P*, Memish ZA*, Mendoza W*, Mensink GBM*, Meretoja A*, Meretoja TJ*, Mesfin YM*, Mhimbira FA*, Micha R*, Miller TR*, Mills EJ*, Mirarefin M*, Misganaw A*, Mitchell PB*, Mock CN*, Mohammadi A*, Mohammed S*, Monasta L*, Monis JD*, Montañez Hernandez JC*, Montico M*, Moradi-Lakeh M*, Morawska L*, Mori R*, Mueller UO*, Murdoch ME*, Murimira B*, Murray J*, Murthy GVS*, Murthy S*, Musa KI*, Nachega JB*, Nagel G*, Naidoo KS*, Naldi L*, Nangia V*, Neal B*, Nejjari C*, Newton CR*, Newton JN*, Ngalesoni FN*, Nguhiu P*, Nguyen G*, Nguyen QL*, Nisar MI*, Nkamedjie Pete PM*, Nolte S*, Nomura M*, Norheim OF*, Norrving B*, Obermeyer CM*, Ogbo FA*, Oh I*, Oladimeji O*, Olivares PR*, Olusanya BO*, Olusanya JO*, Opio JN*, Oren E*, Ortiz A*, Osborne RH*, Ota E*, Owolabi MO*, Mahesh PA*, Park E*, Park H*, Parry CD*, Parsaeian M*, Patel T*, Patel V*, Paternina Caicedo AJ*, Patil ST*, Patten SB*, Patton GC*, Paudel D*, Pedro JM*, Pereira DM*, Perico N*, Pesudovs K*, Petzold M*, Phillips MR*, Piel FB*, Pillay JD*, Pinho C*, Pishgar F*, Polinder S*, Poulton RG*, Pourmalek F*, Qorbani M*, Rabiee RHS*, Radfar A*, Rahimi-Movaghar V*, Rahman M*, Ur Rahman MH*, Ur Rahman S*, Rai RK*, Rajsic S*, Raju M*, Ram U*, Rana SM*, Ranabhat CL*, Ranganathan K*, Rao PC*, Refaat AH*, Reitsma MB*, Remuzzi G*, Resnikoff S*, Ribeiro AL*, Rios Blancas MJ*, Roba HS*, Roberts B*, Rodriguez A*, Rojas-Rueda D*, Ronfani L*, Roshandel G*, Roth GA*, Rothenbacher D*, Roy A*, Roy N*, Sackey BB*, Sagar R*, Saleh MM*, Sanabria JR*, Santomauro DF*, Santos IS*, Sarmiento-Suarez R*, Sartorius B*, Satpathy M*, Savic M*, Sawhney M*, Sawyer SM*, Schmidhuber J*, Schmidt MI*, Schneider IJC*, Schutte AE*, Schwebel DC*, Seedat S*, Sepanlou SG*, Servan-Mori EE*, Shackelford K*, Shaheen A*, Shaikh MA*, Shamah Levy T*, Sharma R*, She J*, Sheikhbahaei S*, Shen J*, Sheth KN*, Shey M*, Shi P*, Shibuya K*, Shigematsu M*, Shin M*, Shiri R*, Shishani K*, Shiue I*, Sigfusdottir ID*, Silpakit N*, Silva DAS*, Silverberg JI*, Simard EP*, Sindi S*, Singh A*, Singh GM*, Singh JA*, Singh OP*, Singh PK*, Skirbekk V*, Sligar A*, Soneji S*, Søreide K*, Sorensen RJD*, Soriano JB*, Soshnikov S*, Sposato LA*, Sreeramareddy CT*, Stahl H*, Stanaway JD*, Stathopoulou V*, Steckling N*, Steel N*, Stein DJ*, Steiner C*, Stöckl H*, Stranges S*, Strong M*, Sun J*, Sunguya BF*, Sur P*, Swaminathan S*, Sykes BL*, Szoeke CEI*, Tabarés-Seisdedos R*, Tabb KM*, Talongwa RT*, Tarawneh MR*, Tavakkoli M*, Taye B*, Taylor HR*, Tedla BA*, Tefera W*, Tegegne TK*, Tekle DY*, Shifa GT*, Terkawi AS*, Tessema GA*, Thakur JS*, Thomson AJ*, Thorne-Lyman AL*, Thrift AG*, Thurston GD*, Tillmann T*, Tobe-Gai R*, Tonelli M*, Topor-Madry R*, Topouzis F*, Tran BX*, Tsala Dimbuene Z*, Tura AK*, Tuzcu EM*, Tyrovolas S*, Ukwaja KN*, Undurraga EA*, Uneke CJ*, Uthman OA*, van Donkelaar A*, Varakin YY*, Vasankari T*, Vasconcelos AMN*, Veerman JL*, Venketasubramanian N*, Verma RK*, Violante FS*, Vlassov VV*, Volkow P*, Vollset SE*, Wagner GR*, Wallin MT*, Wang L*, Wanga V*, Watkins DA*, Weichenthal S*, Weiderpass E*, Weintraub RG*, Weiss DJ*, Werdecker A*, Westerman R*, Whiteford HA*, Wilkinson JD*, Wiysonge CS*, Wolfe CDA*, Wolfe I*, Won S*, Woolf AD*, Workie SB*, Wubshet M*, Xu G*, Yadav AK*, Yakob B*, Yalew AZ*, Yan LL*, Yano Y*, Yaseri M*, Ye P*, Yip P*, Yonemoto N*, Yoon S*, Younis MZ*, Yu C*, Zaidi Z*, Zaki MES*, Zambrana-Torrelio C*, Zapata T*, Zegeye EA*, Zhao Y*, Zhou M*, Zodpey S*, Zonies D*, Murray CJL†. Measuring the health-related Sustainable Development Goals in 188 countries: a baseline analysis from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Sep 21. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(16)31467-2.
*Authors listed alphabetically
Haakenstad A, Birger M, Singh L, Liu P, Lim S, Ng M, Dieleman JL. Vaccine assistance to low- and middle-income countries increased to $3.6 billion in 2014. Health Affairs. 2016 Feb 8.