Monthly Archives: December 2020

1.11. The need for theory in epidemiology – with Dr. Nancy Krieger

Episode Title: The need for theory in epidemiology with Dr. Nancy Krieger

This episode features an interview with Dr. Nancy Krieger, Professor of Social Epidemiology at the T.H. Chan School of Public Health and author of Epidemiology and the People’s Health: Theory and Context. Dr. Krieger discusses the importance of using conceptual frameworks to improve people’s health and the role of population-level determinants of health (including social determinants) in population health research.  We discuss a range of topics, including the differences between biomedical and analytics driven approaches to population health research and theory driven research, as well as the importance of descriptive epidemiology.

1.10. Quasi-experimental Studies – A Love Story: With Tarik Benmarhnia

What puts the quasi in quasi-experimental designs? What makes a quasi-experimental study different than a “real” experiment? Ever wondered about the difference between regression discontinuity, difference-in-differences, and synthetic control methods? Dr. Tarik Benmarnhia joins us on this episode of SERious Epidemiology to talk us through a range of quasi-experimental designs. He makes a strong case for why we should integrate these designs in a variety of settings in epidemiology ranging from public health policy to clinical epidemiology

After listening to this podcast, if you are interested in learning more about quasi-experimental designs, you can check out some of the resources below:

Abadie A, Diamond A, Hainmueller J. (2010) Synthetic Control Methods for Comparative Case Studies: Estimating the Effect of California’s Tobacco Control Program, Journal of the American Statistical Association, 105:490, 493-505, DOI: 10.1198/jasa.2009.ap08746

Chen H, Li Q, Kaufman JS, Wang J, Copes R, Su Y, Benmarhnia T. Effect of air quality alerts on human health: a regression discontinuity analysis in Toronto, Canada. Lancet Planet Health. 2018 Jan;2(1):e19-e26. doi: 10.1016/S2542-5196(17)30185-7. Epub 2018 Jan 9. PMID: 29615204.

Auger N, Kuehne E, Goneau M, Daniel M. Preterm birth during an extreme weather event in Québec, Canada: a “natural experiment”. Matern Child Health J. 2011 Oct;15(7):1088-96. doi: 10.1007/s10995-010-0645-0. PMID: 20640493.

Hernán MA, Robins JM. Instruments for causal inference: an epidemiologist’s dream? Epidemiology. 2006 Jul;17(4):360-72. doi: 10.1097/01.ede.0000222409.00878.37. Erratum in: Epidemiology. 2014 Jan;25(1):164. PMID: 16755261.

Courtemanche, C., Marton, J., Ukert, B., Yelowitz, A. and Zapata, D. (2017), Early Impacts of the Affordable Care Act on Health Insurance Coverage in Medicaid Expansion and Non‐Expansion States. J. Pol. Anal. Manage., 36: 178-210.

Bor J, Fox MP, Rosen S, Venkataramani A, Tanser F, Pillay D, Bärnighausen T. Treatment eligibility and retention in clinical HIV care: A regression discontinuity study in South Africa. PLoS Med. 2017 Nov 28;14(11):e1002463. doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1002463. PMID: 29182641; PMCID: PMC5705070.

Bor J, Moscoe E, Mutevedzi P, Newell ML, Bärnighausen T. Regression discontinuity designs in epidemiology: causal inference without randomized trials. Epidemiology. 2014 Sep;25(5):729-37. doi: 10.1097/EDE.0000000000000138. PMID: 25061922; PMCID: PMC4162343.

Elder TE. The importance of relative standards in ADHD diagnoses: evidence based on exact birth dates. J Health Econ. 2010;29(5):641-656. doi:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2010.06.003

Smith LM, Kaufman JS, Strumpf EC, Lévesque LE. Effect of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination on clinical indicators of sexual behaviour among adolescent girls: the Ontario Grade 8 HPV Vaccine Cohort Study. CMAJ. 2015;187(2):E74-E81. doi:10.1503/cmaj.140900