## Thursday, 13 March 2014

1. Today was the first day of our course on Bayesian methods in health economics. After my lecture on intro to health economics, Chris has given 2 lectures on Bayesian methods and their implementation in BUGS and then Richard has talked about Bayesian analysis of individual-level data (on costs and then both costs & benefits). In between the lectures, we did BUGS-based practicals $-$ so all in all it was quite heavy on the participants. But nobody gave clear signs of imminent crisis (in fact, we've had quite a few interesting questions!)...

2. We're being extremely lucky, weather-wise. We're told that last week it was around -25C (and it still shows: the river Saskatchewan is completely frozen $-$ I mean: solid!), but now it's quite nice and pleasant $-$ sunny and around 10/15C. Of course, Canadians are in mid-August mood and we've seen quite a few kids in shorts. I wouldn't quite go as far as that, but we can't really complain!

3. I'm told of a nice review of BMHE, which is just appeared on Biometrics. The author of the review says
The book seems to be suitable for researchers and practitioners who want to learn and apply statistical methods to health economics. Also it can be a good text for graduate courses in statistical analysis of health economic data. The author tries to keep mathematics at a low level and provides many interesting figures and tables for the readers with weak mathematical / statistical background. It provides step-by-step guidance to practical application of the Bayesian methods by using popular statistical software R and BUGS/JAGS. This would be very attractive to practitioners for they can easily implement Monte Carlo simulation methods necessary for Bayesian inference without fear.
4.  Quick update on me getting all emotional for no reason while on an intercontinental flight: nothing to report. I struggled a bit at the end of this episode of How I met your mother, but nothing major $-$ not even a real tear. In any case, to avoid embarrassment, I stopped watching TV.