Decorative Globe

About the Center for Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics (CCEB)

The Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CCEB) was created in 1993 to provide an interdepartmental structure linking clinical epidemiologists and biostatisticians within the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS). Through its predecessor, the Clinical Epidemiology Unit, the CCEB has been actively involved in clinically-oriented epidemiological and biostatistical teaching and research since 1978.

Together, the CCEB and Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology (DBE) provide consultation on issues of study design and statistical analysis within UPHS; facilitate collaborative research involving clinicians, biostatisticians, and non-clinician epidemiologists; and provide training in biostatistics and epidemiology. Now consisting of more than 500 individuals, the CCEB and DBE are the primary home for epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of Pennsylvania.


Structure & Leadership

  • Harold I. Feldman, MD, MSCE, is Interim Director, CCEB
  • J. Richard Landis, PhD, is Associate Director, CCEB; Director, Biostatistics Unit
  • Stephen Kimmel, MD, MSCE, is Associate Director, CCEB; Acting Director, Clinical Epidemiology Unit

View an organizational chart of the CCEB


Faculty Appointments

CCEB faculty have primary appointments as Senior Scholars, Associate Scholars, Adjunct Scholars, or Affiliate Members.

Senior Scholars
The CCEB serves as the primary research home for Senior Scholars, who act as core faculty for the CCEB. Senior Scholars look to the CCEB, rather than their primary department, for their primary research support, including space, research computing, secretarial/administrative assistance, current expenses, and financial management.

Associate and Adjunct Scholars
Associate and Adjunct Scholars are affiliated faculty members who have expertise in biostatistics, epidemiology, or a related discipline. Associate Scholars have a primary departmental faculty appointment within Penn, but the primary focus of their activities is elsewhere. Adjunct Scholars have primary appointments outside the University. To maintain their appointments with the CCEB, Associate and Adjunct Scholars are expected to participate annually in CCEB educational programs and research activities, and meet annual service/collaborative requirements. Generally, Associate and Adjunct Scholars do not receive direct support from the CCEB.

Affiliate Appointments
Affiliate appointments are available to those with primary faculty appointments at Penn who do not have advanced research degrees in epidemiology, biostatistics, or a related field, but make important contributions to the CCEB's research or educational programs.

For information on obtaining a faculty appointment within the CCEB, please contact Rhonda Minyard, Director of Faculty Affairs (rminyard@mail.med.upenn.edu; 215-573-3874).


Mission Statement

The mission of the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CCEB) of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania is to improve the health of the public by linking epidemiology, biostatistics, and clinical medicine, bringing epidemiologic and biostatistical research methods to clinical research, clinical insight to epidemiologic and biostatistical research, and an understanding of research methodology to clinical medicine.

Preamble

Epidemiology is the study of the distribution and determinants of health and disease in populations, while biostatistics is concerned with the development and evaluation of methods for estimation and making inferences about target populations using data from appropriate samples of those populations. These two disciplines are the basic sciences underlying much of public health and preventive medicine. Clinical epidemiology extends the principles of epidemiology to the critical evaluation of diagnostic and therapeutic modalities in clinical practice. Clinical epidemiologists investigate the frequency, outcome, prognosis, etiology, treatment, prevention, diagnosis, costs, and policy implications of disease. The breadth of biostatistics includes the development of statistical theory and methods and their application to the biomedical and clinical sciences, including assessing the magnitude, reliability, validity and precision of associations (e.g., between exposures and disease). Biostatistics plays a crucial role in the research process, from inception of the research plan through the analysis and publication of the study results.

Objectives

The objectives of the CCEB are:

  • to promote clinical epidemiology research, both in the community and in health care settings;
  • to promote research in biostatistical and epidemiologic methods;
  • to serve as an interdisciplinary resource for clinical research throughout the Medical Center;
  • to organize research initiatives to assess the frequency, outcome, prognosis, etiology, treatment, prevention, diagnosis, costs, and policy implications of disease;
  • to function as active collaborators, in support of others' research initiatives to assess the frequency, outcome, prognosis, etiology, treatment, prevention, diagnosis, costs, and policy implications of disease;
  • to educate the next generation of national and international leaders in clinical epidemiology and biostatistics;
  • to foster the practice of evidence-based medicine by teaching clinical epidemiology, biostatistics, and critical appraisal of the medical literature to medical students, housestaff, and faculty at the University of Pennsylvania;
  • to promote a population and community perspective in the Medical Center;
  • to serve as a leader in disseminating research results and in interpreting research to policy-makers and the public;
  • to serve as a regional, national, and international resource for communities, universities, governments, and other organizations seeking guidance about issues of population medicine, public health, and the epidemiology of disease.

Strategies

To accomplish the objectives described above, the strategies to be used by the CCEB are:

  • to provide a formal interdisciplinary structure to link faculty members from various departments throughout the University who are engaged in clinical epidemiology and biostatistics research;
  • to recruit and nurture clinical epidemiology and biostatistics faculty members based in departments throughout the Medical Center;
  • to assist departments throughout the medical school in recruiting and nurturing epidemiology and biostatistics faculty members;
  • to organize research initiatives to assess the frequency, outcome, prognosis, etiology, treatment, prevention, diagnosis, costs, and policy implications of disease;
  • to function as active collaborators, in support of others' research initiatives to assess the frequency, outcome, prognosis, etiology, treatment, prevention, diagnosis, costs, and policy implications of disease;
  • to provide a clinical epidemiology and biostatistics consulting service to support clinical research throughout the Medical Center;
  • to provide advanced training programs at the Master's and Doctoral levels for those desiring careers in biostatistics and clinical epidemiology;
  • to foster the practice of evidence-based medicine by introducing epidemiologic and biostatistical methods and formal skills in the critical review of the medical literature into the activities of clinical departments by grand rounds, bedside rounds, journal clubs, seminars, and courses for residents and fellows;
  • to organize and run a four year clinical epidemiology curriculum for University of Pennsylvania medical students;
  • to serve as consultants to the private and public sectors of the health care community on issues of public health importance, within and outside the University.