Medical Research from Big Data

Medical Research from Big Data

Modern electronic access to huge databases of patient medical records provides extraordinary new opportunities for improving clinical diagnosis and treatments, The studies are based on statistical analysis of millions of records, and consider complex interactions between genetic, lifestyle, environmental, clinical and other factors. The course explores the opportunities for healthcare analytics and new clinical treatment developments. The course will cover the research lifecycle from formulation of clinical questions (such as “what combination of lifestyle, environmental, genetic and clinical factors reduces colon cancer by 50%”) to big data access and extraction, statistical analysis, evidence formulation, and clinical implementation methods. Data access must comply with all safety, security and privacy regulations.

The studies of this type typically involve teams of professionals including medical researchers, statisticians and database experts. The role of systems engineers is to help in study design, planning and efficient execution. Systems engineers help coordinate the effort and frame it using rich systems thinking.