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Prospects of Mining Big Data for Research on Opioids and Other Substance Abuse

10 Nov
Friday, 11/10/2017 12:30pm to 2:00pm
Computer Science Building, Room 150/151
CSSI Lunch
Speaker: Liz Evans

"Prospects of Mining Big Data for Research on Opioids and Other Substance Abuse"

Abstract:  Our nation's current opioid epidemic has resulted in unprecedented numbers of accidental injury and premature death. Patients being treated for chronic pain are at a heightened risk for these adverse outcomes, and women are especially impacted. In this talk, I will share preliminary results from my current pilot study of gender differences among military veterans with chronic musculoskeletal pain in which I am mining electronic health records and utilizing natural language processing to examine use and outcomes of complementary and integrative healthcare as a non-pharmacological alternative to alleviate pain symptoms. I will also discuss challenges and lessons learned from my prior work with mining linked administrative data to advance longitudinal substance abuse research.

Bio:  I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Promotion and Policy at the U Mass Amherst School of Public Health and Health Sciences. I received my PhD in Public Health with an emphasis in Urban Planning from UCLA in 2016. I also hold an MA in Comparative Literature from Indiana University. I research opioid and other substance use disorders, mental illness, and associated infectious diseases. Much of my work has originated from longitudinal study designs and mining of linked administrative data provided by health care delivery systems, social services systems, and criminal justice sources. Going forward, I am particularly interested in addressing America's opioid epidemic via geospatial techniques, technology-enabled health interventions, and adaptation of technological innovations for people at risk for substance abuse.

Lunch will be provided, beginning at 12:15 pm
Talk begins at 12:30 pm