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1 ERAWEB research lines UMIT University for Health Sciences, Medical Informatics and Technology General information Institution: UMIT - University for Health Sciences, Medical Informatics and Technology City: Hall in Tyrol Country: Austria Introduction The goal of our research program is to develop and apply interdisciplinary methods to guide the comprehensive, systematic and practice-oriented assessment of measures and procedures in public health and medicine. Our research supports decision makers and providers in improving the quality and effectiveness of health care and reducing medical risks in order to enhance the health status of both individual and society. If you have any questions, please contact UMIT s Eraweb team at or call Table of content 1 Quantitative Methods in Public Health Part 1: Epidemiology Part 2: Biostatistics Part 3: Decision-analytic modeling 2 Decision Science 3 Health Technology Assessment and Health Economic Evaluations 4 Personalized Medicine 5 Ethics in Health Sciences 6 Health Services & Outcomes Research 7 Public Health Law 1

2 1. Research line 1 Part 1 : Quantitative Methods in Public Health: Epidemiology Epidemiology is the study of distribution and determinants of health-related characteristics, states or events in populations, and the application of this study to control health related problems. Epidemiology is the cornerstone method of public health research, and helps inform policy decisions and evidence-based medicine by identifying risk factors for disease and targets for preventive medicine. Epidemiologic concepts and measures, study designs, bias Risk models, causal inference and controlling for fixed and time-varying confounding Diagnostic and prognostic studies and clinical prediction rules Systematic integration of modern epidemiological and decision-analytic methods in the investigation of public-health related questions and development of evidence-based clinical guidelines Planning, implementation and evaluation of epidemiologic studies, clinical trials, outcome studies, meta-analyses, risk-benefit assessments and economic evaluations Univ.-Prof. Dr. Uwe Siebert, MPH, MSc Chair, Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and HTA Professor of Public Health (UMIT) Adjunct Prof. of Health Policy and Management (Harvard Univ.) Tel: Epidemiology, Public Health (undergraduate, master, doctorate, post-doctorate/teaching staff) 2

3 1. Research line 1 Part 2 : Quantitative Methods in Public Health: Biostatistics Biostatistics is the science of statistics applied to the analysis of biological or medical data [The American Heritage Medical Dictionary (2004)]. It plays a central role in planning, conducting, analyzing, and reporting of clinical and epidemiological studies. Key themes of biostatistics are descriptive and inductive statistics. Descriptive statistics include methods of summarizing the data and describing their distribution. Inductive statistical methods allow to estimate parameters and to test hypothesis about e.g. associations of variables in target populations. Specific aspects of applied statistics in healthcare and epidemiology: regression and correlation methods, person time data and survival analysis, diagnostic and prognostic models. Use of different statistical software packages (e.g., SAS, SPSS, STATA). Dipl.-Stat. Raffaella Matteucci Gothe Head, Center of Statistical Consulting and Continuing Education Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and HTA Tel: Epidemiology, Biostatistics, Public Health (undergraduate, master, doctorate, post-doctorate/teaching staff) 3

4 1. Research line 1 Part 3 : Quantitative Methods in Public Health: Decision-analytic Modeling Decision making is an essential part of health care. It involves choosing an action after weighing the risks, benefits, and costs of the options available to the individual patient or the patient population. Decision-analytic modeling is a systematic approach to decision making under uncertainty that is used widely in clinical decision making, economic evaluation, and health technology assessment of preventive, diagnostic or therapeutic procedures. It involves combining evidence for different outcomes and from different sources. Outcome parameters may include disease progression, treatment efficacy/effectiveness, safety, quality of life, and costs. Sources may include epidemiological studies on the natural history of the disease, randomized clinical trials, observational studies, pharmacoepidemiologic studies, quality of life surveys, and resource utilization studies, and others. Benefit-harm assessment Cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) Net health and net monetary benefit assessment (NHB, NMB) Choice of an appropriate modeling technique (e.g., decision tree, Markov model, discrete event simulation, dynamic transition model, agent-based model, hybrid models) Evaluation of uncertainty (probabilistic sensitivity analysis) Guidelines and best practices in modeling The use of decision models in health technology assessment Modeling in cancer screening Modeling in personalized medicine Causal modeling Univ.-Prof. Dr. Uwe Siebert, MPH, MSc Chair, Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and HTA Professor of Public Health (UMIT) Adjunct Prof. of Health Policy and Management (Harvard Univ.) Tel: Epidemiology, Medical Decision Making, Public Health (undergraduate, master, doctorate, post-doctorate/teaching staff) 4

5 1. Research line 2: Decision Science Decision science is a multidisciplinary field. It is defined as the study of how people or groups of people make decisions and how they can make better decisions in a in a given context including the presence of uncertainty, complexity and trade-offs. Most of decision theory is normative or prescriptive, i.e., it is concerned with identifying the best decision to take, assuming an ideal decision maker who is fully informed, able to compute with perfect accuracy, and fully rational. The practical application of this prescriptive approach (how people ought to make decisions) is called decision analysis, and aimed at finding tools, methodologies and software to help people make better decisions. Application of decision theory to evidence-based medicine and health technology assessment Decision analytic modeling Microsimulation Personalized decision making Uncertainty analysis Risk attitudes (risk averse, risk neutral, risk seeking) Explicit tradeoff analysis (e.g. for benefit, risk, costs, equity) Assist.-Prof. Dr. Sroczynski, Gaby, MPH Head, Program on Decision Analysis Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and HTA Tel.: +43 (0) Public Health, HTA, Medical Decision Making, Health Economics 5

6 1. Research line 3: Health Technology Assessment (HTA) and Health Economic Evaluations The continuing progress in medical research leads to new preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic options, but also bears new risks and can cause additional costs. To ensure the health of individuals and the society, the demand of systematic evaluation of health technologies is of increasing relevance. In particular, HTA provides a rational basis for evidence-based policy decision making. The aim of HTA is to assess all relevant consequences of health technologies and to ensure that only cost-effective technologies with patient-relevant benefit are available in the healthcare system. The scientific methods applied in HTA reports differ depending on the research question and the purpose of the assessment. For example, methods of evidence-based medicine are used to evaluate the benefits and harms of new technologies. Methods of cost-effectiveness analysis are used to assess the efficiency in the health care system or society. Another widely used method, especially for the comprehensive synthesis of short- and long-term consequences on patients and society, is decision-analytic modeling. Besides these quantitative methods, qualitative methods are mainly used for the evaluation of ethical, legal and social implications. Key Principles and Best Practices in HTA Framework, methods and processes in HTA in different countries Meta-analysis of diagnostic and therapeutic studies, meta-regression, indirect treatment comparison The use decision-analytic modeling and economic evaluation in HTA HTA of preventive interventions, evaluation of screening programs and diagnostic procedures, assessment of personalized medicine Installing HTA agencies in health care systems The role of ethical, legal and social issues in HTA Dr. Petra Schnell-Inderst, MPH Head, Program on HTA Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and HTA Tel.: +43 (0) Health technology assessment, health economics, systematic reviews 6

7 1. Research line 4: Personalized Medicine Personalized medicine is an emerging practice of medicine and health care that uses an individual's specific characteristics, biomarkers and genetic profile to guide and optimize decisions on prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease. Healthcare providers select the proper patient tailored preventative or therapeutic care and administer it using the proper dose, regimen or algorithm. Key HTA principles in personalized cancer medicine Decision-analytic modeling studies to evaluate benefits, risks and costs of personalized prevention, diagnosis and treatment (e.g., personalized cervical cancer screening, prostate cancer screening, breast cancer treatment, CML treatment) Methodological aspects of decision-analytic modeling and microsimulation in personalized medicine Assessment of health-related quality-of-life and patient preferences Ass.-Prof. Dr. Ursula Rochau, MSc Head, Program on Personalized Medicine Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and HTA Tel.: +43 (0) This research line is multidisciplinary covering amongst others: Public Health, Heath Technology Assessment, Decision-Analytic modeling, Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Medicine 7

8 1. Research line 5: Ethics in Health Sciences This research line explores the field of Ethics in Public Health and Health Sciences, focusing on population health and issues of justice such as resource allocation and health disparities at the one hand. On the other hand the traditional focus of Bioethics on clinical relationships (health professional patient relationships) is explored, focusing on issues such as research ethics, ethics and quality in health care (Ethics in Health Care). Pandemic Preparedness in European Health Laws (disparities in legal standards within European health laws, raising issues of justice; impact of the European Union on harmonization of health laws) Clinical Ethics Committees (quality management approach, systematic legal analysis, human rights and health care, patient rights) Hospital Management and Ethics (management of hospitals with confessional ownership, hospital management and patient sovereignty) Medical Malpractice and Liability Reform (comparative analysis of different liability systems within the European Union) ELSI (Ethical, Legal and Social Implications of personalized medicine) Research involving Incapacitated Adults (comparative approach, Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine) Univ.-Prof. Dr. theol. Michael Fischer (Teleological Ethics, Quality Management) Head, Research Unit for Quality and Ethics in Health Care Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and Health Technology Assessment Univ.-Ass. Dr. Verena Stühlinger, LL.M. (Health Law and Ethics) Program on Health Policy, Administration, Economics and Law, Senior Scientist Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and Health Technology Assessment Public Health, Bioethics, Quality Management and Ethics, Health Law and Ethics 8

9 1. Research line 6: Health Services & Outcomes Research Health Services Research is the integration of epidemiologic, sociological, economic and other analytic sciences in the study of health services and is usually concerned with relationships between needs, demand, supply, use and outcomes with the aim of evaluating the components (structure, process, output and outcome). Health Outcomes Research focusses on the results of intervention, i.e. whether the treated person experiences measurable benefits such as improved survival or reduced disability. Drug utilization research using routine datasets, compliance and adherence analyses Claims data analysis Utilization research Pharmacoepidemiology Pharmacoeconomics Dr. med. Holger Gothe, Dipl.-Komm.wirt Head, Program on Health Services & Outcomes Research Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and Health Technology Assessment Tel.: Public Health, Statistics 9

10 1. Research line 7: Public Health Law This research line explores the field of (Public) Health Law not only by incorporating the international, European and national legal framework, but also by opening the field for an interdisciplinary aspect focusing on the theories and methods of economics, epidemiology and medicine. Law and Economics of Public Health The Value of Life from a legal and economics perspective Medical Malpractice: a behavioural analysis The treatment contract: An economic analysis of liability rules Ass.-Prof. Dr. Magdalena Flatscher-Thöni Assistant Professor Program on Health Policy, Administration, Economics and Law Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and Health Technology Assessment Univ.-Ass. Dr. Verena Stühlinger, LL.M. (Health Law and Ethics) Senior Scientist Program on Health Policy, Administration, Economics and Law Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and Health Technology Assessment Public Health, (Public) Health Law, Law and Economics 10

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