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Epidemiology

The Epidemiology Department develops and executes epidemiologic and comparative effectiveness research studies and programs to describe and improve patient management and outcomes at Baylor Scott & White Health facilities. In addition, the Epidemiology Department publishes its findings in peer-reviewed journals, contributing to the evidence base from which best practices can be identified and implemented, and seeks external funding and collaboration with outside centers and data sources for epidemiologic research requiring larger or broader study populations than can be accessed within Baylor Scott & White Health. The group’s emphasis is on the patterns of care and outcomes of patients with cardiovascular disease. The group is experienced in study design, data collection, data management and analysis, and manuscript preparation.

 

The Epidemiology Department is led by Giovanni Filardo, PhD, MPH. Dr. Filardo received his PhD in Epidemiology with a concentration in cardiovascular disease from Yale University and has worked with several world leaders in cardiology and epidemiology. He has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals in the fields of cardiology, cardiothoracic surgery and epidemiology. 

 

In 2010, Dr. Filardo received a 3-year, $700,000 grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality for the study Large Population-based Study of Surgery for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms (R01HS018576), followed in 2011 by a 3-year, $2.3 million grant from NIH / National Heart Lung Blood Institute for the study Post-CABG Atrial Fibrillation (1R01HL103683), and in 2014 by a 2-year $500,000 grant from Gilead Sciences, Inc., to investigate ranolazine’s potential to prevent short- and long-term re-hospitalizations after cardiac catheterization/percutaneous coronary intervention, and the associated impact on costs of care. As of 2013, Dr. Filardo is also a co-investigator on the NHLBI–funded Baylor Core Clinic Center for the Cardiothoracic Surgical Network (CTSN), which seeks to establish a cooperative network of cardiac surgery programs to promulgate the use of evidence-based medicine in surgical practice. Beginning in 2017, the Epidemiology Department is leading BSWH’s participation (with Dr. Filardo as the BSWH PI) in the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Cohort Program as a member of the Precision Medicine Trans-America Consortium for the HCSRN (TACH) – a collaborative of 4 integrated delivery networks that span seven states. Details regarding the PMI Cohort Program, which seeks to establish a national research cohort of 1 million participants within which research at the intersection of human biology, behavior, genetics, environment, data science and computation, and much more, will be conducted with the goal of developing more effective ways to prolong health and treat disease, can be found here.

 

In addition to these federally-funded studies, the Epidemiology Department is currently leading/working on ~60 research projects (the majority involving multiple sites), including 3 randomized trials. It has also established both an internship and a fellowship program devoted to training future researchers and clinicians in research methods.

 

The internship program was established in 2010, and provides recent graduates at the bachelors or masters level who are planning careers in medicine or in health care research with hands on research experience through participation in the federally- and privately-funded studies being conducted by the Epidemiology Department. Interns receive education and training related to the background information pertinent to these studies, data abstraction/collection and management, and the ethical conduct of research. Additional opportunities for development, such as further education in research methods and the development of manuscripts for publication, are available to interns on their own initiative.

 

The fellowship program was established in 2013, and is targeted towards early stage investigators who have received their doctoral degrees in epidemiology, public health, or a related field; candidates holding doctorates in medicine or osteopathy are also considered. Candidates should also have a strong interest in cardiovascular disease, as this is the primary focus of the Epidemiology Department’s work. The fellowship will last 2-3 years, providing a mentored environment in which fellows will develop research proposals, and hone their skills in seeking funding from federal and private sources, executing research projects, and developing manuscripts for submission to peer-reviewed journals. The first Epidemiology Fellow started in Summer 2013.

  

As of summer 2016, we have had 48 participants in the Epidemiology Internship and Fellowship programs. Of those who have completed the program, 44% have gone on to medical school, PhD school, nursing school or grad school at some of the most prestigious schools in the nation: Yale, Stanford, Columbia, Tulane, etc. Another 25% of interns went on to full-time jobs in the health care industry, some within Baylor Scott & White Health. Another 25% of interns went on to full-time positions in other industries.

 

For further information or to apply for either the internship or fellowship program, please email your questions and Curriculum Vitae to: BSWHEpidemiology@BSWHealth.org.

 

Epidemiology personnel: 

 



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