Midhat Kamal

Research Assistant

Midhat Kamal is a medical doctor graduated from Dow University of Health Sciences, Pakistan. Midhat is currently working towards her medical licensing in the United States. She has volunteered to provide medical help at a shelter during a flood, health fairs as well as some under-served clinics in the United States. Her work experience includes working as a clinical assistant at clinics. She has some research experience based on a project she did in medical school.

In 2022, Midhat started working as a Research Assistant at Section for Biostatistics and Evidence-Based Research, the Parker institute on a project in the Contextual Factors Working Group within the international organization ‘Outcome Measures in Rheumatology’ (OMERACT). Together with Dr. Sabrina M. Nielsen, MSc, PhD (Biostatistician) and other colleagues at Section for Biostatistics and Evidence-Based Research, she conducts her research investigating the empirical evidence for Effect Modifying Contextual Factors in rheumatological trials.

Evidence-based medicine is essential for developing clinical guidelines, and, hence, shapes clinical practice. However, an (average) overall treatment effect estimate from a clinical trial may not be valid for deciding what treatment is best for an individual and therefore is not necessarily cost-effective. Statistical analyses of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) yield a causally valid estimate of the overall treatment effect, which is the contrast between the outcomes in two randomized treatment groups commonly accompanied by a confidence interval. In addition, the trial investigators may want to examine whether the observed treatment effect varies across patient subgroups (also called ‘heterogeneity of treatment effects’), i.e. whether the treatment effect is modified by the value of a variable assessed at baseline.

This leaves a potential for exploring what characterizes the patients who benefit from a treatment and those who do not, and subsequently match patient subgroups with the treatment that best suits them. In the OMERACT CFWG (https://omeract.org/working-groups/contextual-factors/), Midhat is, together with Farwa Asim, the main investigator on a scoping review that contributes to identifying such characteristics (i.e. Effect Modifying Contextual Factors) to be considered in clinical trials, to facilitate research on stratified medicine.