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Contact: Kathryn Ryan, 914-740-2100,
New Joint Military-Civilian Database Provides Insights on Health Care Outcomes, Utilization, and Costs

New Rochelle, NY, June 8, 2015 – The U.S. Army, Department of Defense, and University of Pennsylvania scientists collaborated to generate the Person-Event Data Environment, a Big Data platform that captures financial, health, medical, and other data for every soldier from entry to separation from the armed forces. The significance of this powerful data resource for studying health-related issues is discussed in detail in an article in Big Data, the highly innovative, peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is currently available for free on the Big Data website until July 6, 2015.

In the article “The U.S. Army Person-Event Data Environment: A Military–Civilian Big Data Enterprise,” authors Loryana Vie, Lawrence Scheier, Paul Lester, Tiffany Ho, Darwin Labarthe, and Martin Seligman, University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia), Army Analytics Group (Monterey, CA), and Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwester University (Evanston, IL) state that initiative was “necessitated by a growing need to learn more about the relationship between psychology and health assets and health outcomes including health care utilization and costs – issues of major importance for both military and civilian population health.”

In addition to information on soldiers’ military experience, the database also includes military contractors and military dependents. It represents a heterogeneous population from a broad range of geographic regions and ethnicities, with a variety of socioeconomic backgrounds and family and medical histories. Funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation supported this collaborative project. Civilian researchers can access the PDE database with permission from the U.S. Army.

“This type of initiative is critical in linking decisions," says Big Data Editor-in-Chief Vasant Dhar, Professor at the Stern School of Business, New York University. “Is a specific category of soldiers experiencing abnormally high levels of stress? Are the associated medical costs with such a population higher? For policy makers and the armed forces, the challenge is to create an infrastructure that links decisions to data that are collected with the right types of questions in mind.”

About the Journal
Big Data, published quarterly in print and online, facilitates and supports the efforts of researchers, analysts, statisticians, business leaders, and policymakers to improve operations, profitability, and communications within their organizations. Spanning a broad array of disciplines focusing on novel big data technologies, policies, and innovations, the Journal brings together the community to address the challenges and discover new breakthroughs and trends living within this information. Complete tables of content and a sample issue may be viewed on the Big Data website.

About the Publisher
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known
for establishing authoritative medical and biomedical peer-reviewed journals, including OMICS:  A Journal of Integrative Biology, Journal of Computational Biology, New Space, and 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing. Its biotechnology trade magazine, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), was the first in its field and is today the industry’s most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm’s more than 80 journals, newsmagazines, and books is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.