JHF-Supported Big Data Fellowship Prepares Health Professionals for New Era of Analytics, Personalized Medicine
By the Jewish Healthcare Foundation-
During the fellowship, participants delved into topics that included data science and biomedical research, genomic data and testing, clinical communication, predictive modeling, and personalized medicine. The Data Science fellows represented a broad tapestry of the region’s healthcare community, with participants from various local universities (including the University of Pittsburgh, Chatham University, and Slippery Rock University), Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, and the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System.
More than 60 physicians, nurses, public health officials, pharmacists, physical therapists, and genetic counselors participated in the JHF-supported Data Science Fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh.
“What really struck me was the diversity of the group, both in terms of ages and disciplines,” says JHF’s Robert Ferguson, who participated in the Data Science fellowship. “There were physicians in their fifties and people in their twenties and thirties who are just starting their careers. That blend of viewpoints made the experience more valuable for me.”
Ferguson and other fellows had the opportunity to explore their own genetic profiles using Test2Learn software developed by the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy, and engaged in discussions on the clinical and ethical aspects of gene sequencing. Ferguson was impressed by how big data permeates all aspects of successful healthcare organizations.
“The highest-performing organizations are translating data into action that drives improvement,” Ferguson observes. “They have committed leaders, and turn complex data into user-friendly dashboards and programs that lead to higher-quality, more proactive front-line care.”