Issues in the Analysis of Healthcare Cost Data

Speaker: Nicholas Mitsakakis

Date/Time: April 15th, 10 AM – 12 PM

Location: Health Sciences Building (155 College Street, Toronto ON), Room HS 100


Estimating health care costs is required for economic evaluations and cost-effectiveness analyses, being of increasing importance for informing decision and policy making. Abundance of prospective and observational cost data, such as administrative databases, contains very valuable information available to be analyzed by proper statistical methods. These methods though need to comply with distributional characteristics of the data (e.g. non-negative values, skewness, non-constant variance) and to overcome a number of data shortcomings,  including prematurely ended observation of cost accumulation, resulting into censored data. Despite the tremendous work on methods appropriate for the analysis of medical cost data over the last decades, their use into practice remains suboptimal. This workshop aims to provide with an overview of the issues surrounding the analysis of medical cost data, such as properties of cost data distributions, type of estimates of interest, challenges regarding data availability and proposed statistical methods for tackling those issues. Illustrative examples of real data analyses will be given.


Nicholas Mitsakakis

Dr. Nicholas Mitsakakis is a Biostatistician at THETA and an assistant professor in the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Toronto. He holds a PhD degree in Biostatistics and Master’s degrees in Mathematics and Artificial Intelligence. His research interests include statistical methods in health economics, medical decision-making and health services research.