Amy Gimma - Intro

Hi everyone!

I currently work for WHO European Region as a consultant working on a new shiny app to share and visualize data from a new multi-pathogen respiratory surveillance system - release date tbd! I also help support current shiny and R markdown reports and other data / research outputs. I’m from the US, and I mostly lived in the northeast but also spent some time in Utah and California. I am living in London until the end of the year when I’ll be back in the US (after 5 years!).

I have a background as a registered nurse for about 5 years in the ER and general medicine/surgery floors. I later switched fields and became a web developer (using the Ruby on Rails stack, various javascript libraries, etc) for Epion Health, building patient and practicioner facing interfaces that read and wrote to cloud-based electronic medical records at outpatient practices to improve data accuracy and completeness. I also helped initiate and build the company’s data security program.

I earned an MSc in Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine with a focus on Health Economics and with electives in epidemiology. I worked at LSHTM for the next 3 years on various research projects and supported the WHO data team in Goma during the 2018-2020 Ebola epidemic. For most of 2020 through the beginning of 2022 I worked on the CoMix study, tracking the number of social contacts people were having, along with other perceptions and behaviours, throughout the pandemic in more than 20 countries across the EU and UK. All of our data management and outputs were coded in R, and we made as much of the code open-sourced as we could (with the caveat that there were only 2 of us on the project most of the time, and we didn’t have time to make the repositories perfect!). The project helped me to improve my abilities in writing in R and in organizing large projects and surveys. My favorite epi project that I worked on was this paper very early on in the pandemic - working with the team was a great experience and we demonstrated the need for public health interventions in addition to contact tracing. It was a crash course in modelling and non-tidyverse / advanced R methods for me.

I’m a beginner modeller but very interested in how models can be used to support decision-making in real-life applications. I’m looking forward to participating in this community to learn more!

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:wave: Amy!

As a “beginner” modeller interested in supporting decision making you are really a great example user so any feedback of any kind would be greatly appreciated!

I know it can be a bit terrifying jumping in with thoughts but please do as most of us (at least me) are just muddling along.