Projects as research associate at WifOR Institute (previous employer)
Context of main projects: WifOR is a research institute and Thinktank, specialised in in quantifying societal/economic impacts of industries (e.g. health care). During my time at WifOR, we developed an approach and models to quantify societal/economic impacts of single pharmaceutical products in different disease areas (see publications below). The approach relates to the concept and literature of estimating productivity costs/effects in economic evaluations, as described for example here, but goes further by including unpaid work and multiplier effects, providing more holistic estimates of impacts on societal welfare.
Such calculations are useful as they expand the information basis on which health authorities can make reimbursement decision on pharmaceutical products. While the health impact of products should, in general, always be the main driver of such decisions, other societal effects and consequences (like costs) should also be considered.
The nature of the respective projects was different to my PhD project, as they were contracted research (also disclosed in the respective publications). While we were able to work on the projects independently, the time constraints that come with contracted research (in contrast to my PhD research at least) did not allow us to explore certain issues of the approach (e.g equity and ethical impliciations or the positioning within the current German reimbursment rationale). The type of health economic models we built always come with many assumptions and uncertainties. In hindsight, nevertheless, I wouldn’t make any major changes. However, I would never try to build and estimate such complex models again in Microsoft Excel…