News & Events

Biostatistics students and faculty participate in Washington state COVID-19 modeling

Biostatisticians from the University of Washington School of Public Health are working with the Washington State Department of Health to use existing COVID-19 models to understand the pandemic in Washington state and to inform policy and decision making. In a linked effort, students from the School’s Department of Biostatistics are working with the state department of health to develop a state-level model.

These efforts are led by the state’s cross-agency COVID-19 Modeling Workgroup, which also includes modelers from the Institute for Disease Modeling and Microsoft.

“The students are involved in working toward getting an in-house model for the Washington State Department of Health that the department can run on their own to monitor the situation in Washington state and help inform policy," says Barbra Richardson, a member of the workgroup and a research professor of biostatistics at the School of Public Health.

The group is revising a model developed at Vanderbilt University to work on Washington state data, according to Richardson, also an adjunct research professor of global health.

“As a biostatistician in training, I'm happy to be able to help out in any way I can during the current public health crisis,” says third-year PhD student Serge Aleshin-Guendel who is participating in the project.

Other Biostatistics members of the workgroup include:

  • Jean Feng, fifth-year Biostatistics PhD student
  • Ruth Etzioni, Affiliate Professor of Biostatistics and Health Services; Biostatistician, Public Health Sciences Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
  • Noah Simon, Associate Professor of Biostatistics