Cost-Effectiveness and Decision Modeling using R Workshop

July 24-26, 2018

The Decision Analysis in R for Technologies in Health (DARTH)* workgroup in collaboration with the University of Minnesota Division of Health Policy and Management is offering a 3-day workshop on cost-effectiveness and decision modeling using R, July 24 to 26, 2018 at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN. Co-instructors Eva Enns, Fernando Alarid-Escudero, and Karen Kuntz will cover the principles of cost-effectiveness analysis and decision analytic modeling and will guide participants in implementing decision trees, Markov models, and microsimulation models in R. The workshop will also cover more advanced topics, such as probabilistic sensitivity analysis and model calibration in R.

Please note that you may register to attend in-person or by webinar.

The following are topics that will be covered across the three days of the course.  Please check back for updates on this site for a more detailed agenda.

Day 1: Introduction to cost-effectiveness and decision trees in R
Day 2: Markov models and probabilistic sensitivity analysis in R
Day 3: Microsimulation modeling and model calibration in R

Participants will be expected to have some experience with decision modeling and to be able to grasp basic concepts of economic evaluation. Participants are also expected to be familiar with R. For those with little or no experience in R, we will be providing an extra one-day “Introduction to R for decision modelers” on Monday, July 23rd, 2018.

Should you wish to register for this day, there is an option to do on this site as you register for the full course.


Mercy Learning Lab,
D-325 Mayo Building,
420 Delaware St SE
Minneapolis, MN, 55455
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis East Bank Campus

map of mayo location

Healthcare resources are limited and policymakers are under increased pressure to make use of these resources as efficiently as possible. Cost-effectiveness analysis and decision analysis are quantitative decision-making frameworks used to formalize objectives, quantify tradeoffs, and ultimately support more informed decision making. These techniques have been applied to a wide range of health policy questions, including optimal cancer screening and treatment guidelines; technology reimbursement and coverage decisions; and hospital operations management.

R is an open-source software that provides a flexible environment where advanced statistical analyses can be combined with decision models of varying complexity within the same framework and the results can be presented in publication ready tabular and graphical forms. The fact that R is freely available also improves model transparency and reproducibility.

*The DARTH workgroup is a multi-institutional, multi-university collaborative effort comprised of researchers who have a passion for transparent and open-source solutions to decision analysis in health. The aim of this collaboration is to expand knowledge and develop educational materials that empower people to construct R-based decision models.

Visit the DARTH website for more information.

Eva A. Enns, PhD
Eva Enns, PhD, is an Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health, in the Division of Health Policy and Management. She develops mathematical models of the spread of infectious diseases that help evaluate strategies aimed at mitigating disease impact through prevention and/or treatment. Her aim is to inform better infectious disease prevention, management, and control policies as well as to develop new methodologies or tools to better address issues surrounding infectious disease outbreaks.

Fernando Alarid-Escudero, PhD
Fernando Alarid-Escudero, PhD, is a post-doctoral associate in health decision sciences at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, Division of Health Policy and Management. He is also a member of the Cancer Intervention Surveillance Modeling Network (CISNET) consortium. He focuses on developing and applying new methods in medical decision making, simulation modeling and cost-effectiveness analysis. His applied work focuses on the use of simulation modeling to evaluate clinical and public health strategies, such as treatment and screening for cancer, including gastric, colorectal and cervical cancer.

Karen M. Kuntz, ScD

Karen Kuntz, ScD, is a Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Health Services Research, Policy and Administration MS and Doctoral programs at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, Division of Health Policy and Management. She is an internationally-recognized expert in the methods and applications of simulation modeling to address clinical and public health interventions. She is past president of the Society for Medical Decision Making (SMDM) – an organization dedicated to the methods and applications of decision modeling. More recently, she served as co-chair of the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR)-SMDM Modeling Good Research Practices Task Force (2010-2012) where she also served as co-leader on the state-transition modeling paper. She was also a member of the 2nd Panel on Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine and served as the lead on the chapter on decision modeling. She is a firm believer in the added value that decision models can bring to real-world policy.

Early Bird Registration by July 9, 2018

In person

  3-day workshop (July 24-26) Intro to R (July 23)
Registrant Type Through
July 13, 2018
After July 13, 2018 Through July 13, 2018 After July 13, 2018
Industry $1,500 $2,000 $400 $500
Academia / government $750 $1,000 $250 $300
Students (limited spots available) $250 $300 $100 $150


  3-day workshop (July 24-26) Intro to R (July 23)
Registrant Type Through July 13, 2018 After July 13, 2018 Through July 13, 2018 After July 13, 2018
Industry $1,350 $1,600 $350 $400
Academia / government $700 $800 $200 $250
Student (limited spots available) $200 $250 $75 $100

**Please note all fees are in US Dollars.

Graduate Hotel (1 block from workshop site)
615 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414
Phone: (612) 379-8888

DoubleTree by Hilton (approx. half mile from workshop site)
511 Huron Blvd. SE, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55414, USA
Phone: (612) 504-3000
Fax: (612) 504-3219

Courtyard By Marriot (approx. half mile from workshop)
1500 S Washington Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55454
Phone: (612) 333-4646

Hampton Inn & Suites University (approx. 1 mile to workshop site)
2812 University Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414
Phone: (612) 259-8797

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