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Professional Development Course - Introductory Analysis of Linked Data


18-22 November 2013 at the University of Sydney

This 5-day course introduces the topic of the analysis of linked data. It acquaints health services researchers, clinical practitioners and managers with the theory and skills needed to analyse linked health data. The modular structure of the course provides participants with a theoretical grounding on each theme, followed by a hands-on practical exercise in our computer lab each day, using de-identified linked NSW data files. 

Topics covered:

  • Introduction to data linkage and its history
  • Description of CHeReL and how record linkage works
  • Quality of data linkage
  • Ethics, data security, applying to CHeReL for data
  • Types of population health databases
  • ICD coding
  • Overview of linked data studies
  • Constructing study populations
  • SAS commands for arrays, merging datasets, tagging records, creating sequence variables
  • Measures of health care utilisation; health care episodes
  • Prevalent pool effect
  • Inter-hospital transfers
  • Data quality I: Preparing data for analysis
  • Data quality II: Accuracy and reliability of data sources
  • Measures of health care outcomes: treatment outcomes and adverse events
  • Introduction to survival analysis and Cox regression
  • Available covariates: sociodemographic, illness severity, comorbidity
  • Methods of risk adjustment


  • Ms Kerry Lewis - Health Information Manager
  • Dr Timothy Dobbins - Cancer Epidemiology and Services Research, University of Sydney
  • Dr Jane Ford - Perinatal Health Research Group, University of Sydney
  • Ms Katie Irvine - Centre for Health Record Linkage (CHeReL)
  • Ms Sanja Lujic - University of Western Sydney
  • Dr Kathleen Falster - The Sax Institute
  • Assoc Professor Christine Roberts - Perinatal Health Research Group, University of Sydney
  • Professor Judy Simpson - Sydney School of Public Health, University of Sydney


Edward Ford Building (A27)
The University of Sydney

The closing date for applications is 31st October 2013.

For more information contact:

Office for Teaching & Learning
Room 329, Level 3
Edward Ford Building (A27)
The University of Sydney
NSW 2006 Australia

Phone: +61 2 9351 4366



We pay respect to the Traditional Custodians and First Peoples of NSW, and acknowledge their continued connection to their country and culture.