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Honors Go to Ash, Zaslavsky, and Elliott

1 April 2010 1,174 views No Comment
Arlene Ash


Alan Zaslavsky


Marc Elliott


The Health Policy Statistics Section presented its inaugural Mid-career Excellence Award and Long-term Excellence Award on January 21 during the keynote session of the Eighth International Conference on Health Policy Statistics, at the Fairmont Hotel in Washington, DC.

Arlene S. Ash of the University of Massachusetts Medical School and Alan M. Zaslavsky of Harvard University received the section’s highest honor—the Long-term Excellence Award—recognizing their outstanding leadership and sustained contribution to the development and application of statistical methods in health-care policy and health services research, and for service to the section. Marc N. Elliott of RAND received the Mid-career Excellence Award for his contributions to developing statistical methods, and for continuing achievement at the frontier of statistical practice and research in health-care policy and health-services research.

Arlene Ash is chief of the Division of Biostatistics and Health Services Research in the Department of Quantitative Health Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She has developed internationally adopted methods for calculating fair payments to health-care providers; explored the causes and correlates of health-care disparities; developed efficient sampling techniques for identifying systemic health delivery problems; and written and taught extensively about the key role of risk adjustment in understanding health-care quality and cost.

Ash has served the profession in many ways, including as co-chair of the Sixth International Conference on Health Policy Statistics in 2005, vice-chair of ASA’s Committee on Scientific and Public Affairs, and chair of its Subcommittee on Electoral Integrity. Ash is co-founder of DxCG Inc., a predictive modeling health informatics company, now part of Verisk Health. She is an ASA Fellow as well as a Fellow of Academy Health.

Alan Zaslavsky is professor of health-care policy (statistics) in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School. His main areas of research work have been innovative applications of hierarchical modeling, small-area estimation, applied Bayesian methodology, and microsimulation. He is perhaps best known for his contributions to the development, implementation, and analysis of large-scale surveys, including leadership in the Consumer Assessments of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) surveys.

Zaslavsky has served on many national panels on census methodology, small-area estimation, and measurement and reporting of quality and disparities for the Institute of Medicine and the Committee on National Statistics (CNSTAT) of the National Academy of Sciences. An ASA Fellow, he has served in section offices. He also is an elected member of the International Statistical Institute and a National Associate of the National Academy of Sciences.

Marc Elliott is senior statistician at RAND Health, where his research work focuses on consumer evaluation of health care, health-care access and satisfaction, disparities and measurement, and survey methodology. He has made important contributions to the statistical and health policy literature in more than 150 published articles.

Elliott is the principal investigator of the CMS Medicare CAHPS Analysis project, and he has played a leadership role on CAHPS projects since 1996. He has led a series of papers developing indirect estimation methodology for inferring race/ethnicity and accompanying methodology for estimating racial/ethnic disparities in the absence of self-reported race/ethnicity. He has also been a key contributor to a variety of health policy research on critical issues such as stress reactions after terrorist attacks, mental health of refugees, and adolescent health.

The 2010 Health Policy Statistics Section Awardees were selected from a large roster of nominees by five judges: Bonnie Ghosh-Dastidar (RAND, 2009 HPSS chair); A. James O’Malley (Harvard, 2008 HPSS chair); Thomas E. Love (Case Western Reserve, 2010 HPSS chair); Joseph Cappelleri (Pfizer, 2008 ICHPS co-chair); and Christopher Schmid (Tufts, 2008 ICHPS co-chair). These awards will be presented at the Ninth International Conference on Health Policy Statistics in Cleveland, Ohio, this fall. All HPSS members are encouraged to respond to a Spring 2011 call for nominations (including self-nominations).

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