Summer Internship in Pharmacoepidemiology

The Department of Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy offers a summer internship in pharmacoepidemiology for current students in the Health Sciences.

The internship is designed to offer students an experience in pharmacoepidemiology research. Pharmacoepidemiology is defined as the application of epidemiologic reasoning methods, and knowledge to the study of the uses and effects of drugs in human populations. Its major focus is on the evaluation of drug safety and effectiveness post-approval (phase 4 studies), and the evaluation of drug use (drug utilization and quality/medication error studies). While data for such evaluation is prospectively collected in some studies, the use of readily available clinical and administrative data in retrospective studies is increasing. The Department uses a variety of large datasets covering several millions of patients, including data from Florida Medicaid, the Veteran’s Administration Health System, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and clinical data from Shands Healthcare. Examples of ongoing research studies include the safety of mental health drugs or the utilization patterns and effectiveness of new vaccinations.

The demand for researchers in pharmacoepidemiology with clinical background has increased significantly over the past decade. This development is expected to continue with the greater public attention to drug and patient safety and the increasing pressure on regulatory bodies and the pharmaceutical industry to improve drug evaluation efforts after initial approval by the FDA. Clinicians with advanced degrees in pharmacoepidemiology pursue careers in academia, the pharmaceutical industry, and regulatory agencies. The Department hopes that this internship will provide students with insight in an exciting field they may not have considered as a career option.
Successful applicants will work closely with Department faculty, fellows, and graduate students, participate in ongoing research projects or the development of new research proposals. While the extent of involvement in research is limited due to the short time period, the Department will engage students in a small project that can be completed during the internship and presented at a professional meeting. Activities assigned to interns mightinclude

• Conducting background searches on specific topics relevant to ongoing studies
• Participation in data collection and analysis
• Participation in preparation of manuscript, meeting abstracts and presentations

The internship will provide a stipend of S4,327.00 (Summer 2013) for a total of 10 weeks, dates are negotiable. Students are expected to work full-time and participate in all Department activities. Students will also be required to present their work at a Department seminar and the College of Pharmacy Research Day.

Contact: Almut G. Winterstein, PhD
;  phone: 352-273-6258