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Expert Profile

Marrying medical consultancy and the academic world

 

With the acquisition of ApHER, the Institute of Applied Economics & Health Research, we’re happy to welcome a number of new co-workers. This time in our series of employee profiles, we introduce you to Kristian Bolin – now a Senior Advisor at MedEngine.

Kristian answers the call from his family’s kitchen in the Southern Swedish countryside. Their family lives in Lund, close to Malmö, and two of the three kids still live at home. “I would say my kids are really my passion, and our home here is the common passion of ours!”

Economist by trade

Kristian holds a chair of Health Economics in Gothenburg University’s Economics Department and is the director of the Center for Health Economics there. One of the main goals of the Center is to facilitate collaboration between clinical and health economics researchers.

Kristian has vast experience in health economics academic research, and in collaboration with authorities and industry at the national and international level.

“It wasn’t like I planned to be a researcher from when I was 10”, he jokingly says. “I started at the PHD level, and once there found it to be a good fit. I’ve done pretty esoteric research in my academic career”, he modestly sums.

“Academic principles also need to work in the real world.”

Combining consultancy and the academic world

Kristian feels medical consultancy and the academic world do combine well. “Academic principles also need to work in the real world”, he says. He illustrates the point using predictive models.

“For instance, in economics, if you have a very broad theoretical model everything can happen in it, and it’s of no use. If the model’s too closely fit to a small set of situations, the predictive value is also very low – and the model, again, isn’t much of a use.”

What is needed is the right amount of complexity and adaptation, depending on the situation. And for that one needs accumulated experience of how the world functions.

“The most challenging medical consultancy work I have been involved in has been establishing practical routines and protocols for how to collect real world evidence from the Nordic national registries. The challenges involved in collecting this kind of data stem from the fact that a large number of registries are administered by an almost equally large number of public agencies.”

“MedEngine is, in my view, a leading company in the growing Nordic applied health science industry.” 

Speaking of challenging topics…

In his free time Kristian likes to read. Physics, mathematics, and cosmology – both scientific literature and fiction. Recently, Kristian has set out to understand one of the most profound ideas of all times. “I have a background in mathematics and am trying to learn the mathematics of general relativity theory. Although I can’t say I’m fully equipped to understand how the model is built, I can still get a sense of it.”

Kristian is excited to join MedEngine and take part in this new chapter of growth. “MedEngine is, in my view, a leading company in the growing Nordic applied health science industry”, he says. “My vision is that MedEngine will be a leading company globally, when it comes to offering real world evidence for the health industry.”

With his expertise on board, it’s probably safe to say we are definitely on our way there.

Photography: Andreas Kirkegaard

Klaus Elfving

Klaus Elfving

Klaus Elfving is a Helsinki-based content producer, science communicator, and broadcast journalist.