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Stay Connected, Stay Well

with news from CHHS

June 2021

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Student and Alumni Highlights

ISyE Ph.D. student Akane Fujimoto recently started a one-year ORISE fellowship at the CDC. Akane's work applies optimization and statistics to medical decision making, healthcare operations, and humanitarian logistics. Congratulations, Akane! 

ISyE Ph.D. student Arden Baxter successfully completed her thesis proposal. Her work focuses on developing algorithms for coordinated resource allocation problems with applications in emergency management and disaster response. Congratulations, Arden!

ISyE Ph.D. student Buse Eylul Oruc Aglar received the 2021 David Cowan Scholarship through HIMSS Georgia Chapter. Buse's work includes contributions to healthcare applications as well as humanitarian logistics. Congratulations, Buse!

ISyE Ph.D. student Francisco Castillo-Zunino successfully completed his thesis proposal, "Discrete Optimization and Statistical Analysis for Healthcare Applications." Applications of Francisco's work include improved vaccine coverage and patient scheduling. Congratulations, Francisco!

Former ISyE Ph.D. student Pengyi Shi and her research team recently earned the INFORMS MSOM Responsible Research Award for their work "Timing it Right: Balancing Inpatient Congestion vs. Readmission at Discharge." Congratulations, Pengyi!

ISyE Ph.D. student Seyma Guven Kocak successfully defended her thesis. Seyma's work ranges from scheduling of home healthcare workers to efficient/effective network recovery decisions. Congratulations, Seyma!



OR & Analytics in Hurricane Preparedness

CHHS Director Pinar Keskinocak and CHHS co-founder Julie Swann recently shared their experience using OR and analytics to increase disaster preparedness and resilience in an INFORMS webinar. The webinar, entitled "How Operations Research and Analytics Can Improve Disaster Preparedness and Response," can be watched here.


CHHS Covid-19 Dashboards

CHHS researchers have created dashboards to track the status and trends of Covid-19 in Georgia. The dashboards present infection and vaccination data at the county level. Four dashboards are published:

  1. Covid-19 Georgia Counties Trends Comparison: aggregates Covid-19 outcomes and demographic data
  2. Georgia Vaccine Equity: highlights racial disparities in vaccination rates
  3. Covid-19 Georgia Metrics: summarizes Covid-19 prevalence in terms of cases, hospitalizations, deaths, and positivity rates
  4. Interactive Covid-19 Ranking of Counties in Georgia: summarizes new daily Covid-19 cases and identifies potential hot spots

Recent Publications

Health Spending and Vaccination Coverage in Low-Income Countries
CHHS student affiliate Francisco Castillo-Zunino, CHHS Director Pinar Keskinocak, CHHS Research Director Dima Nazzal, and Matthew C. Freeman (Emory University) published their work examining the impact of economic growth and health spending on vaccine coverage in low-income countries.
CHHS Director Pinar Keskinocak and CHHS co-founder Julie Swann recently contributed to the above work, which aims to determine the relationship between Covid-19 vaccine efficacy and coverage (both with and without non-pharmaceutical interventions) and SARS-CoV-2 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths. Read more on the group's work here.

INFORMS Healthcare Conference

The 2021 INFORMS Healthcare Conference will take place virtually July 21-23. Several CHHS faculty and students will be presenting their work. Topics of discussion include uses of OR and analytics in addressing the Covid-19 pandemic, management of future crises using lessons learned during Covid-19, and development of healthcare approaches which are equitable, proactive, and evidence-based. Register or learn more today

CHHS Affiliate Spotlight

Data-Driven, Equity-Focused Support for Atlanta DOT

ISyE senior design team "Watt-lanta" provided data-driven methodology to the Atlanta DOT to maximize the impact of city investments into streetlights with the goal of reducing crime and vehicle accidents in the city. The team built a sociodemographic-conscious model to prioritize locations and recommend a proactive intervention plan to the DOT. The Atlanta mayor's office plans to install 10,000 streetlights in the city, informed by the team's results. More information about the work of Watt-lanta and other senior design teams can be found here. Great work! 


SNAP Retailers can Lower Rates of Child Maltreatment in Rural Areas

CHHS affiliate Rose Bullinger recently published a study ("Proximity to SNAP-Authorized Retailers and Child Maltreatment Reports") quantifying the relationship between child maltreatment and the presence of retailers which accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. The authors found that the presence of SNAP retailers in rural areas decreased both reported and substantiated cases of child maltreatment.

New Master of Science Degree to be Offered at Georgia Tech

Georgia Tech will launch a new Master of Science in Urban Analytics (MSUA) program in Fall 2021. The interdisciplinary degree will be administered by the School of City and Regional Planning in partnership with the H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, the School of Computational Science and Engineering, and the School of Interactive Computing. The program is "aimed at students who are interested in solving urban problems through the acquisition, integration, and analysis of various forms of data."


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AIMING TO IMPROVE THE HUMAN CONDITION AND PROMOTE WELLNESS through research, education, the development of tools, and collaborations that transform decision-making and enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of health and humanitarian systems.