The Opportunity The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) is seeking an outstanding scientific and strategic leader in the field of evidence-based medicine and health technology assessment to join its Senior Management Team in the role of Chief Scientific Officer (CSO).
The new CSO will assume this role at a time when ICER is poised to continue its growth and expand its influence in the US healthcare system. ICER is an independent, nonpartisan non-profit research organization that evaluates evidence on the clinical effectiveness and value of medical tests, treatments, and delivery system innovations. Today, ICER is best known as the country’s independent watchdog on drug pricing, and the CSO will have leadership over the research process that develops all ICER products. Each of ICER’s drug assessment reports includes a full analysis of comparative clinical effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and potential budget impact, along with a “value-based price benchmark” for new drugs that has a notable track record of informing public policy and negotiations between insurers and drug makers. As part of its scientific innovation, ICER has developed unique methods for rating evidence on the clinical effectiveness of a drug or intervention (ICER’s Evidence Rating Matrix) and has also developed the most influential value framework used in health technology assessment in the US.
ICER was founded over 10 years ago with an ethical goal in mind: to try to provide a fair and objective analysis of evidence as the starting point for bringing all stakeholders— patients, doctors, drug makers, insurers, and others— together to use evidence as a cornerstone for improving the value of health care in the US. The new CSO will join ICER with an unrivaled opportunity to help the US address the core challenge of sustaining innovation while transitioning to a health care system in which every patient can be guaranteed access to high-value care.
Steven D. Pearson, MD, MSc President and Founder Steven D. Pearson, MD, MSc founded ICER as an experiment to determine how healthy technology assessment could function in a uniquely American environment. He has grown the Institute from an academic research project at Harvard Medical School to a complex, uniquely positioned research organization with a staff of nearly 30 and independent, state-of-the-art facilities in Downtown Boston.
In addition to his work at ICER, Dr. Pearson is a lecturer in the Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and also serves as a visiting scientist in the Department of Bioethics at the National Institutes of Health. Among his past roles, from 2005-2006 Dr. Pearson served during the Bush Administration as special advisor on technology and coverage policy within the Coverage and Analysis Group at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Dr. Pearson has also been a senior visiting fellow at England’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), a Board Director of HTAi, the international society of health technology assessment agencies, and the Vice Chair of the Medicare Evidence Development and Coverage Advisory Committee (MedCAC).
Dr. Pearson's ongoing academic work combines efforts in comparative effectiveness research, health policy, and bioethics. His published work includes over 100 articles on quality of care, the role of evidence-based medicine within the health care system, and related clinical, ethical, and organizational policy challenges. His book, No Margin, No Mission: Health Care Organizations and the Quest for Ethical Excellence, was published by Oxford University Press. Dr. Pearson received his BA from Stanford University and his MD from the University of California, San Francisco.
Sarah K. Emond, MPP Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer With nearly 20 years of experience in the business and policy of health care, Ms. Emond leads the strategic planning and operations of ICER as executive vice president and chief operating officer. In this role, she is responsible for overseeing the Institute’s public programs, communications, operations, and finances.
Prior to joining ICER, Ms. Emond spent time as a communications consultant, with six years in the corporate communications and investor relations department at a commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company, and several years with a health care communications firm. She began her healthcare career in clinical research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston.
A graduate of the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University, Ms. Emond holds a master of public policy degree with a concentration in health policy. She also received a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from Smith College. Ms. Emond serves as the president of the Heller School Alumni Board, and is a past fellow of the Boston Chapter of the New Leaders Council.
David Rind, MD, MSc Chief Medical Officer David is Chief Medical Officer for the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review. In this capacity, David is responsible for leading teams conducting analyses and critical appraisals of medical evidence across a wide range of clinical interventions. David also has a leadership role at ICER, helping to guide high-level policy discussions of the interpretation and application of evidence.
David is a primary care physician with expertise in evidence-based medicine and with particular experience in reviewing the evidence for diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. Before coming to ICER, David worked at UpToDate for 13 years where he held senior positions within the editorial group. David received a BA in chemistry from Yale University and his MD from the University of Rochester. He completed his residency in internal medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center and then did a joint fellowship in general internal medicine and clinical computing at Beth Israel Hospital and Harvard Medical School. He received a Master of Science in health policy and management from the Harvard School of Public Health.
In 2003, David became the primary care Deputy Editor at UpToDate. David was central to restructuring how UpToDate presents recommendations and led their work collaborating with the GRADE Working Group, introducing graded recommendations into UpToDate in 2005. David remains a member of GRADE. At UpToDate, David was also responsible for training physician editors in clinical epidemiology, biostatistics, and evidence-based medicine. His roles at UpToDate, where he worked until 2016, included Senior Deputy Editor, Director of Evidence-Based Medicine, Co-Executive Editor, and the Vice-President of Editorial and Evidence-Based Medicine.
David continues to see patients as an academic primary care physician, working with internal medicine residents in the outpatient practice at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
CURRENT FUNDING MODEL The sources and structure of ICER’s funding must reinforce the independence that underpins its reputation for objectivity that is essential for its impact. Current support is dominated by funding from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and other non-profit foundations (78 percent), with smaller contributions specifically targeted to the Institute’s membership programs from manufacturers (10 percent) and private payers (9 percent), and a very small amount from government contracts (3 percent).
RESEARCH PORTFOLIO ICER conducts evidence reviews and comparative value analyses on approximately 1215 topics per year, covering new drugs at or near the time of FDA approval, new technologies, and health systems interventions, like diabetes prevention programs. The CSO is responsible for ensuring ICER has the necessary research infrastructure to produce all of the reviews to exacting scientific standards. I list of current and recently completed projects can be found here.
CHIEF SCIENTIFIC OFFICER Major Functions and Responsibilities This is a rare and exciting opportunity for a dynamic and entrepreneurial Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) to join the Senior Management Team at ICER and take the lead role in overseeing its research efforts. As noted above, ICER’s research includes the conduct of systematic evidence reviews and health economic modeling. The role of the CSO includes oversight of a skilled research team at ICER and the overall production of ICER reports, management of ICER’s engagement with outside academic researchers, particularly health economists, and leadership in the evolution of ICER’s methods of value assessment and report development. The CSO is also expected to serve as the senior evidence author on 1-2 ICER assessment reports each year.
In all these activities the CSO will function as a key member of the ICER Senior Management Team, which operates in a supportive, collaborative manner to achieve ICER’s goals. The CSO reports directly to the President of ICER and will be a central figure in ICER’s strategic planning and all other high-level activities. This individual will be a nationally-recognized leader in evidence-based medicine, health economics, and/or outcomes research, capable of actively managing complex internal team-based efforts, while serving as an external champion of ICER at leading scientific and health policy conferences and meetings. Due to the leadership function of this role the CSO must be able to locate to the greater Boston area and work from ICER offices in downtown Boston.
The broad challenges and objectives for the CSO are as follows. It is possible that excellent candidates will not have personal expertise in all methodological areas described, but will have had enough exposure to them to understand their role and impact.
Lead and sustain the national reputation of ICER by fostering the highest level of cooperation, integrity, objectivity, responsiveness, and overall transparency in the analysis of evidence on health care interventions.
Mentor and lead internal and external teams on evidence summaries, systematic reviews, meta-analyses, and cost-effectiveness and other analyses to answer high-impact clinical questions; critically evaluate the research methods and statistical findings of health outcome studies retrieved from the medical literature; and use established frameworks and tools to evaluate, grade and summarize the quality of the evidence.
Provide methodological leadership to internal and external teams on health technology assessment and health economic modeling.
Participate as an active member of the senior management team with the President, COO, and CMO, to shape the strategic direction and ensure the operational excellence of ICER.
Manage a multi-center network of academic collaborators on evidence synthesis and health economic modeling, including identifying new network members, cultivating relationships, and assigning work flow.
Attend and present at leading scientific and health policy conferences to communicate about ICER’s methods, reports, and impact.
Plan and carefully manage the research budget in consultation with the COO and Finance Director, ensuring that dollars are spent efficiently and effectively in support of ICER’s goals and objectives.
Qualifications and Experience The ideal CSO candidate can be expected to have the following personal characteristics and professional experience:
A doctorate level degree is required.
At least 10 years of experience conducting and overseeing health technology assessments, academic systematic evidence reviews, or similar work requiring the critical evaluation of medical evidence; a track record of success as part of an entrepreneurial organization or department, preferably in an academic, industry, or other research setting
Substantial experience in the development of economic models to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of health care interventions. Expert-level knowledge is required of the key debates regarding the methods of cost-effectiveness analysis, including issues regarding the elicitation of utilities, selection of comparators, and selection of willingness-to-pay thresholds
Expert skills at critical evaluation of evidence, including the ability to critique the research methods and statistical findings of published studies in order to rate the overall strength of evidence underlying an analysis of comparative effectiveness
Experience in the interpretation of applied quantitative research methods, analysis and biostatistics (including meta-analysis)
Experience leading discussions of evidence among multiple stakeholders
A deep respect for, belief in, and ability to articulate ICER’s values and mission
A willingness to take risks and advocate for unconventional ideas
A self-motivated and entrepreneurial approach to building and guiding a research program
Outstanding written ability, and the ability to write clearly and cogently without requiring editorial assistance; must be facile editors of the drafts of others
Excellent presentation and communication skills; and the experience and inclination to be an effective, outgoing spokesperson for ICER
A keen eye for operational efficiency and optimal use of resources; the ability to plan, monitor, and manage a budget
Ability and willingness to travel as necessary to meet essential initiatives
An outgoing and positive personality. Strong interpersonal skills, a collaborative working style, a strong track record of mentorship of research staff, and an enthusiasm for building bridges among key stakeholders.
A passion for health care policy and ICER’s mission to create a more effective, affordable, and just health care system.
Integrity, imagination, strong listening skills, and a high level of energy.
A sense of humor.
About Institute for Clinical and Eco
The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) is an independent non-profit research institute
that produces reports analyzing the evidence on the effectiveness and value of drugs and other medical
services. ICER’s reports include evidence-based calculations of prices for new drugs that accurately
reflect the degree of improvement expected in long-term patient outcomes, while also highlighting price
levels that might contribute to unaffordable short-term cost growth for the overall health care system.
ICER’s reports incorporate extensive input from all stakeholders and are the subject of public hearings
through three core programs: the California Technology Assessment Forum (CTAF), the Midwest
Comparative Effectiveness Public Advisory Council (Midwest CEPAC), and the New England Comparative
Effectiveness Public Advisory Council (New England CEPAC). These independent panels review ICER’s
reports at public meetings to deliberate on the evidence and develop recommendations for how
patients, clinicians, insurers, and policymakers can improve the quality and value of health care.
Through all its work, ICER seeks to play a pivotal role in creating a future in which coll...aborative efforts to
move evidence into action provide a foundation for a more effective, efficient, and just health care
system. For more information about ICER, please visit ICER’s website.