Understanding and improving population health through data
It is increasingly recognized that the environment in which people live, and the forces and systems shaping everyday life, deeply influence the health and well-being of individuals, families and communities.
Despite that recognition, our working knowledge of the relationship between social forces and health is limited. One example is our understanding about how family composition and household dynamics affect the health of different household members. This limitation stems from the inability to relate family and household members in previous research. Urquia’s research program aims to overcome this and other obstacles affecting population health research.
Marcelo Urquia, Canada Research Chair in Applied Public Health, is an epidemiologist whose research is mainly based on the identification and analysis of relevant information available in data-rich environments. Data-rich environments were created to collect and unify diverse information on individuals scattered across sectors—such as health care, education, housing, justice, immigration—and over time. Urquia uses innovative methods to analyze these complex data, make sense of the results, and inform policy-makers, community stakeholders, and clinical practitioners.
This research will also advance our understanding of how everyday life conditions and exceptional life events (from pregnancy to serious disease to immigration, among others) affect the health and well-being of different family members and population subgroups.