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New Post-doctoral Associate Joins the PHDL

Angel Paternina, MD, MScThe Public Health Dynamics Laboratory is pleased to introduce Angel Paternina, MD, MSc, who has joined the department of Health Policy and Management as a post-doctoral associate. Dr. Paternina will work to develop a research program on the acquisition, integration and analysis of public health data to expand Project Tycho into a global, open access resource. His work will also include development of new analytical methods to visualize large scale disease data to detect patterns of associations between disease transmission and climate/demographic determinants.

Dr. Paternina earned his MD degree from the University of Cartagena, Colombia, and his MSc in Clinical Epidemiology from the National University of Colombia. He started his global health work in his native Colombia by studying the impact of rotavirus vaccination on child disease, reporting the effectiveness, impact and cost-effectiveness of the rotavirus vaccine to prevent rotavirus diarrheal disease and deaths in Colombia, Latin America and low and middle income countries worldwide. Since then, he has focused his research on the impact of different interventions in children and special populations, assessing in Colombia the cost-effectiveness of the varicella vaccine in children, HAART in HIV/AIDS population, mass pneumococcal vaccination in the elderly population, and the burden of H1N1 in pregnant women in Colombia during the pandemic. Currently, Dr. Paternina is an expert collaborator for the Global Burden of Disease study with the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, and is working with researchers from Latin America to identify the severity profile of some vector-borne diseases in Colombian children, including dengue and chikungunya.

NIH BD2K Career Grant Opportunities

On September 12th, Michelle Dunn, PhD, will visit the Public Health Dynamics Laboratory (PHDL) at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health. Dr. Dunn is senior advisor for Data Science Training, Diversity and Outreach in the Office of the Associate Director for Data Science at the NIH. She will host an afternoon Q & A session on Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) career grant opportunities at the NIH. This session is open to all interested doctoral students, post-doctoral researchers and junior faculty.

NIH BD2KDate: Monday, September 12, 2016

Time: 3:00-4:30 pm

Location: 109 Parran Hall, Pitt Public Health

Passing of a Public Health Giant

donald hendersonDonald "D.A." Henderson, an American epidemiologist who led the international war on smallpox that resulted in its eradication in 1980, passed away on August 19, 2016 at the age of 87. For decades a towering figure in the world of public health, Dr. Henderson led the campaign that ultimately eradicated smallpox from the world. At the time of his death, he held the position of Distinguished Scholar at the UPMC Center for Health Security and Professor of Public Health and Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. In 2009, Henderson's book "Smallpox: The Death of a Disease" was the inaugural selection for the school's Pitt Public Health | One Book, One Community program. He was a friend and mentor of Pitt Public Health Dean Donald S. Burke, who is quoted on the book's dust jacket, "D.A. Henderson pulls no punches as he tells the inside story of the global eradication of smallpox.......This is the heroic stuff of true public health leadership!"

Pitt Launches Program for New Approaches to Opioid Epidemic

Six researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health will be part of a pilot program launched by Dean Donald Burke to answer new questions on the opioid epidemic. Jeanine Buchanich, Zan Dodson, Julie Donohue, Mary Hawk, Christina Mair and Tom Songer, researchers with expertise ranging from Injury epidemiology to health geography, will collect data using various sources such as social media and on-the-ground research. A computer model of the epidemic will be created from the findings of this multidisciplinary program, allowing researchers to better understand the factors that lead to addiction and its progression and to consider interventions and policy options to address this ever-growing epidemic. Read more

donald burkejeanine buchanichzan dodsonjulie donohue
mary hawkchristina mairtom songer

NIH View of Data Science and BD2K

On September 12, 2016, Dr. Michelle Dunn from the NIH will be the distinguished speaker at the first lecture of the 2016-2017 PHDL Seminar Series. The NIH launched the Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) initiative in 2012 to address the challenges of maximizing the use of biomedical research data. Dr. Dunn will give a retrospective of the development of data science at the NIH over the last few years, describing how it has evolved along with and in response to the development of data science in the broader scientific community. She will describe a major trans-NIH program, the Big Data to Knowledge Initiative, led by the NIH Associate Director for Data Science (ADDS), as well as the additional efforts of the ADDS office towards enabling the efficient management of biomedical Big Data. 

Michelle Dunn, PhDDr. Dunn is senior advisor for Data Science Training, Diversity and Outreach at the Office of the Associate Director for Data Science at the NIH. She leads the data science training efforts, advising on training, education and workforce development in biomedical data science. Prior to joining the NIH/OD, she was a program director at the National Cancer Institute. She received her Ph.D. in statistics from Carnegie Mellon University and her A.B. in applied mathematics from Harvard College. 

The seminar is open to the public and Grand Rounds approved.

HAZEL Minimizes Post-Disaster Deficits in Access to NY Primary Care Services

hazel map imageThe HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response has funded creation of a tool to help New York City public health professionals find the most effective ways to restore primary care access after disasters. Disasters can disrupt primary care services, resulting in a gap between the ability of healthcare providers to deliver care, and the increased healthcare needs of the population. This gap is called the access deficit. Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh developed the HAZEL (hazard-area primary care locator) modeling tool to allow users to test the impact of interventions such as back-up systems, alternative service plans, and policy modifications on the access deficit. Read more.

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