ISyE Seminar Speaker - Ebru Bish

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Title: Public Health Screening: Challenges and Opportunities for Operations Researchers

Abstract: Screening for infectious diseases and genetic disorders is an important, and extensively used, public health tool. Early detection can improve clinical outcomes, and, for infectious diseases, reduce the disease spread, and is especially beneficial for diseases that have slow to develop and/or initially non-specific symptoms. A major challenge is to design public health screening policies that can classify a large population, having different risk factors, in an accurate and equitable manner with limited resources and imperfect tests. My talk will draw upon the body of research that my collaborators and I have conducted over the years in a variety of screening contexts, ranging from newborn screening for genetic diseases, to population-level infectious disease screening, to donated blood screening for transfusion-transmissible infections. I will present an overview of this research area, discuss open research questions, provide several key models to optimize resource allocation in public health screening, and highlight the challenges and opportunities.   

Bio: I am a professor of operations management at the University of Alabama’s Culverhouse College of Business; previously I was a faculty member at Virginia Tech’s Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. My research interests fall in the areas of data science and optimization, with focus on public health policy and healthcare systems management and optimization. My research has been published in leading operations research, biostatistics, and medical journals; recognized by various best paper awards from INFORMS and IISE; and supported by multiple grants from the National Science Foundation and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. I have extensively collaborated with industry partners, with recent partners including the New York State Laboratory of Public Health, North Carolina State
Laboratory of Public Health, the American Red Cross, and the Carilion Clinic. I have graduated fourteen PhD students, many of whom hold academic positions; and I have served as the 2019 President of the INFORMS Health Applications Society.


  • Workflow Status:Published
  • Created By:mwelch39
  • Created:11/02/2023
  • Modified By:mwelch39
  • Modified:11/02/2023


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