Books and code

This comes as the results of two external forces that have prompted me to do some work on the website — specifically the section on books. The first one is the newest version of hugo-academic (which is the engine underlying the whole of my website, together with the R package blogdown). This has a new facility that can be used to format books or tutorial or documentation. Trouble is that it assumes that you’re writing a book and so if you have a folder named “book” it automatically use that new format for the pages in that folder.


This is quite exciting: since Nathan (this is his very interesting blog) has arrived to UCL a couple of months ago, we’ve started to work on quite a few of very interesting projects — including a major “refactoring” of the code for BCEA. I’m obviously very attached to BCEA — it’s basically my first R package and one I’ve spent lots of time thinking about and then working on. And I think it’s usually very helpful to practitioners and I always push people around to try and get them to use it.

survHE update

Because I have been preparing an extended presentation on (Bayesian) survival analysis in health economic evaluation, I took the opportunity to make some tweaks to survHE — nothing major, but I was aware of couple of imprecisions in the code or things I wanted to make a bit better, so while I was knitring my slides, I made the changes. As soon as I get a moment, I’ll also update my repository (which can be used to update the package), but for now, I’ve uploaded the changes on GitHub, so the development version (1.

R in HTA workshop

Today we’ve had our workshop on “R for trial and model-based cost-effectiveness analysis”, at UCL. I really enjoyed the whole day — we had several interesting presentations and very lively discussion. In fact, all presenters have agreed to make their slides available, which I’ll put on the workshop webpage. One of the cool outputs is actually that we’ll use that webpage as some sort of “meta-repository”; many people have presented their work and their own GitHub repository with code and documentation.

Almost full

We’re getting closer to the deadline for registration to our summer school. There are some more places available, though and we are actually keeping the process very “informal”. So that we’ll probably allow people to keep registering (if we have still rooms, which we do for now) until later in May — I think around mid-May. The registration page is here. Interestingly enough, we seem to have attracted some interest from very far: we have a few participants coming all the way from Australia!


Together with colleagues around the UK, we’re organising a workshop on the use of R for statistical modelling in health economic evaluation (broadly speaking, “cost-effectiveness analysis”). It’s good that this is exciting news (contributing to taking my mind off all the politics & elections in the world…). But I think this really is exciting news, with a very good line up of speakers/talks. And I really think the objectives of this workshop are very interesting \(-\) I think, ultimately, we’ll aim at also creating a repository for files/examples/models/templates so that people can start using R for their health economic modelling more and more.

501 days of Summer (school)

As I anticipated earlier, we’re now ready to open registration for our Summer School in Florence (I was waiting for UCL to set up the registration system and thought it may take much longer than it actually did $-$ so well done UCL!). We’ll probably have a few changes here and there in the timetable $-$ we’re thinking of introducing some new topics and I think I’ll certainly merge a couple of my intro lectures, to leave some time for those…

500 days of Summer (school)

We’re nearly ready to advertise the 2018 edition of our Florence Summer School on Bayesian Methods in Health Economics (some posts from last year are here and here )! The dates are June 4-8 and we’ll hold it again at the CISL Centro Studi. Last year, I was very pleased with the whole experience and I think people were also very happy, so we’re planning to have more fun in a few months.


Recently, I’ve been doing a lot of work on the beta version of BCEA (I was after all born in Agrigento $-$ in the picture to the left $-$, which is a Greek city, so a beta version sounds about right…). The new version is only available as a beta-release from our GitHub repository - usual ways to install it are through the devtools package. There aren’t very many changes from the current CRAN version, although the one thing I did change is kind of big.

Building the EVSI

Anna and I have just arxived a paper (that we’ve also submitted to Value in Health), in which we’re trying to publicise more widely and in a less technical way the “Moment Matching” method (which we sent to MDM and _should _be on track and possibly out soon…) to estimate the Expected Value of Sample Information. The main point of this paper is to showcase the method and highlight its usability $-$ we are also working on computational tools that we’ll use to simplify and generalise the analysis.