Skip to content
Medaffcon taps experienced pharmacoepidemiologist as lead real-world epidemiologist in Sweden

Home > All articles > Medaffcon taps experienced pharmacoepidemiologist as lead real-world epidemiologist in Sweden

Medaffcon taps experienced pharmacoepidemiologist as lead real-world epidemiologist in Sweden

Joining Medaffcon enables Dr. Johanna Simin to leverage her expertise to advance real-world data use and evidence-driven health. Medaffcon, in turn, can augment its in-house capabilities with the high-quality digital healthcare data found in Sweden.

Dr. Johanna Simin is looking forward to leveraging her unique skill set as a lead real-world epidemiologist for Medaffcon in Sweden.

Dr. Simin joined Medaffcon in May. She is excited to join the knowledgeable team especially because her new position offers an outstanding opportunity to utilise real-world data (RWD) and real-world evidence (RWE) to improve health, support evidence-based decision making and contribute to the development of pharmacotherapies for even rarer diseases.

“That’s what drives me: the use of data to enhance health,” she states.

“In the Nordics, we have such an incomparable opportunity to utilise clinically informative real-world data, reflecting the reality without selection as often seen in RCTs. Outside the Nordics, you’d first have to build the data infrastructure and then collect the data. But we’re in an exceptional position and have everything in place. It’d be a tremendous shame not to maximize this potential for improving population health, given that well-designed RWE studies are generalisable also to other populations.”

Medaffcon’s clientele will be able to lean on her expertise at all stages of research projects. Together with Medaffcon’s team she is committed to developing strategies to maximize the use of RWD and RWE, be it from defining the research question or identifying, compiling or analysing the requisite data.

“If I get to decide, as an epidemiologist, I’d love to be part of the project starting with defining the research protocol and outlining the clinically relevant research questions that offer the most added value to the client,” she says.

A seasoned epidemiologist

Among other texts, Dr. Simin has authored 13 peer-reviewed research papers, with another three in the pipeline, during her 10-year career as a researcher in pharmacoepidemiology, which spans her register-based post-graduate, doctorate and post-doctorate research projects at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.

Her academic background provides her a broad understanding of the potential and application of real-world health data, as well as a high degree of familiarity with the various national and regional data registers accessible to researchers in Sweden.

“I’m no stranger to project management or major international collaborations between top universities and life-science/pharmaceutical sector. My studies are all in pharmacoepidemiology, majority of them being based on real-world data obtained from nationwide registers in Sweden. They’ve provided me a thorough understanding of what kinds of data are available and how they can be accessed,” says Dr. Simin.

“It’s naturally also crucial to know which study designs and research methods enable you to produce valid and generalisable results. That’s something that’s very important to me, to apply solid designs and rigorous epidemiological methods.”

With Finnish and Swedish data, a lot is possible

Both Finland and Sweden provide virtually unrivalled access to the volumes of digital data that are generated every day in their respective healthcare systems.

In Sweden, the nationwide and population-based registers have a high rate of completeness and concordance, tells Dr. Simin. They incorporate inpatient and specialised outpatient care, including details such as prescription drug intake, diagnoses, and causes of death. Other possibilities in the form of quality registers or data bases also exist for those requiring more detailed health data – for example on patient records, inpatient pharmacotherapies and cancer therapies, the results of laboratory tests or medical scans. We utilise our expertise to select the most appropriate data source, once the objectives of the study have been decided on.

In addition, the country boasts more than 100 national disease-specific quality registers and more than 450 biobanks. The Swedish personal identity number makes linking the data straightforward.

“Principally, the data are the same here as in Finland, but of course the population is almost twice as large and a lot is collected specifically at the population level. The climate is also very supportive of innovation and research, which means the data are provided as soon as the regulatory permits have been granted,” notes Dr. Simin.

“Finland and Sweden together offer data quality and volumes that really enable you to maximize the use of RWD and RWE for research.”

Back to top