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The Postdoctoral Fellowship in Real World Evidence (RWE), Population Health, and Quality Research aims to prepare the fellow for a career in healthcare quality-related outcomes research. The program is designed to develop key competencies and experience in conducting RWE research with a focus on population health and quality-related measures and outcomes, while providing electives for customized training based on candidate interests and sponsor priorities. Graduates will be well-positioned to contribute to RWE, population health, and quality-related research in the pharmaceutical industry.


This two-year fellowship will be based at UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy (Chapel Hill, NC) for the first 12 months where the fellow will have the opportunity to enroll in and audit relevant courses. For year 2, the fellow will spend 6 months at the Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA; Arlington, VA) and 6 months at Janssen with their Scientific Affairs group (Titusville, NJ).


Candidates must hold a doctoral degree (PhD, PharmD, MD, etc.) from an accredited program and be eligible to live and work in the US. Candidates should possess direct knowledge in epidemiology, health services research, comparative effectiveness research, and patient-centered outcomes research (or an equivalent area of focus). Candidates should also demonstrate proficiency in SAS, Stata, SQL, and/or R.

UNC is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or status as a protected veteran.

Coursework and Training

Coursework: Coursework offerings provide an opportunity to take courses suited to the fellowship needs and the fellow’s interests. Courses can be taken for credit as well as audited. Coursework is flexible and can include:

  1. Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement and Application in Healthcare Research and Practice (3 credits) – HPM 794
  2. Cancer Outcomes Research Seminar (1 Credit) HPM 769

Seminar on Healthcare Quality: The goal of the seminar is to provide training on research methodology and health policy analysis necessary to conduct quality-related research. The seminar is a not-for-credit course and will be taught by UNC and PQA mentors.

Self-directed Learning: The fellow will be given the opportunity to self-direct their own learnings to prepare for the Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality® exam.

Fellowship Opportunities and Expectations

University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill

  1. Complete didactic training in quality measurement and quality-related research
  2. Actively participate in ongoing Center for Medication Optimization (CMO) research, including retrospective, prospective, and PRO-related research
  3. Conduct, and submit for publication, a self-directed secondary data analysis project with administrative claims from MarketScan®, Medicare, North Carolina Medicaid, and/or Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina
  4. Collaborate on ongoing research with Janssen/PQA

Pharmacy Quality Alliance

  1. Actively participate in ongoing PQA research
  2. Gain exposure to the quality measure lifecycle including conceptualization, specification, testing, endorsement, implementation, and maintenance processes
  3. Learn about financial models in healthcare ecosystem and various value-based payment programs
  4. Explore the role of healthcare quality measurement organizations in the greater Washington, D.C. area
  5. Understand how healthcare stakeholders, including life science industry, engage with quality organizations, like PQA and others, to advance and align quality strategies

Janssen Scientific Affairs

  1. Actively participate in real world evidence, population health, and quality research & performance measurement within the life science industry
  2. Build quality considerations into endpoint decisions for pre-approval trials
  3. Include quality and policy considerations in RWE generation
  4. Gain exposure to how patient-reported outcomes (PROs) are incorporated into data and evidence generation from regulatory, real-world and policy perspectives
  5. Translate scientific research for non-scientific policy audiences
  6. Use data and evidence to support above-product external policy discussions related to improving quality of care for patients in a given therapeutic area

Application Process

We are not currently accepting applications.