UBC PiMS Research Group
Pharmacoepidemiology in Multiple Sclerosis Research Group

Job Opportunities

We are a vibrant, multi-disciplinary team of dedicated researchers focused on improving the health, treatment options and outcome for people and families living with MS. We will always consider the exceptional applicant, so if there’s nothing listed and you think you’ve got what it takes, feel free to send us your CV and cover letter outlining why you want to join our group and your proposed research area.

Contact: Dr Helen Tremlett. email: helen.tremlett@ubc.ca


email: info.pimsgroup@gmail.com


Currently Postings (3):

Do you want to make a difference to the growing number of individuals dealing with a lifelong, chronic disease with no known cause or cure? Do you want to live in a place consistently ranked as one of the world’s ‘most liveable cities’?

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is one of the leading causes of disability in young adults today. An exciting postdoctoral fellow position is currently available in the department of Medicine (Division of Neurology) at the University of British Columbia (UBC) ‐ in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

The successful applicant will be a contributing member of the Pharmacoepidemiology in Multiple Sclerosis (PiMS) research group. With the vision of fostering excellence in multi‐disciplinary clinical, therapeutic, and epidemiological research to advance knowledge and improve the well‐being of those affected by multiple sclerosis, we thrive on diversity. Team members are trained in variety of disciplines, creating a truly interdisciplinary approach to research.

The successful applicant will be involved in an exciting cross‐Canada multi‐site collaboration accessing health administrative databases linked with clinical data to examine whether an MS prodrome or ‘pre‐MS trait’ exists. Most diseases start well before they are actually diagnosed. Some allow for medical identification and intervention by giving early warning signs that may appear hours, weeks, or years before diagnosis (e.g. stroke, cancer or multiple sclerosis). Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic disease of the brain and spinal cord often affecting young adults. It can be challenging to recognize as early symptoms can be non‐specific or vague, including fatigue, numbness and tingling or visual problems. This can cause distress for the affected person, their family and friends as they continue moving through the healthcare system looking for an answer. Even if a diagnosis is reached promptly it is highly likely that the MS has pre‐existed for months, possibly years. This uncertainty over when MS actually ‘starts’ makes it very challenging for researchers to find what might cause MS. All of these factors combined create difficulties for the patient, healthcare professionals, the healthcare system and researchers alike. Ultimately, identification of an MS prodrome will encourage and facilitate more timely recognition, diagnosis and management of MS, as well as helping future studies searching for the beginning and cause of MS.

The successful applicant will play a key role in the success of this Canada‐wide study including: study design, ensuring data integrity, data access, data linkage, statistical analyses and interpretation, hypotheses generation, presentation of findings, and drafting and publication of scientific manuscripts and grant writing. The study will also have other dedicated personnel, including a project coordinator, data programmer, biostatistician whom the successful applicant will work closely with. The successful candidate will also help mentor and supervise graduate students who are working on this or related projects.

UBC is one of the world’s leading universities. UBC’s Vancouver campus has over 47,000 students, representing 140 different countries. UBC offers hundreds of academic programs through 12 faculties and 14 schools. Located on the western tip of the Point Grey Peninsula in the city of Vancouver, the stunning campus is surrounded by forests, ocean and mountains, yet is just 30 minutes from the city centre. For more information about UBC, please go to http://www.ubc.ca


▪ A PhD/MD degree in a relevant discipline e.g. epidemiology, pharmacoepidemiology, applied biostatistics

▪ Experience with and knowledge about, special populations such as patients with chronic disease, comorbidities or multiple sclerosis

▪ Experience with large health‐related datasets

▪ Experience with data access and linkage from administrative databases

▪ Computer proficiency, including use of statistical software

▪ Working knowledge of advanced epidemiology‐related research methodology and design

▪ Working knowledge of advanced biostatistics

▪ Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication skills in English

▪ Ability to exercise judgment and make decisions in accordance with broad research objectives

▪ Ability to independently organize workload, goal setting and working effectively towards deadlines

▪ Willingness to work in an interdisciplinary setting

▪ Willingness and ability to positively engage with researchers at multiple sites across Canada in order to motivate other team members to achieve the study goals in a timely manner

▪ Appreciation of the importance of clinical and basic research

▪ An inquiring and open mind

▪ Basic knowledge of medical ethics

Preferred start date is negotiable. Funding for this position is available for up to 3 years. Salary will be based on the MS Society of Canada guidelines (http://mssociety.ca/en/research/researchfunding.htm), with a generous extended health benefits package. To apply, please send your letter of interest, CV and names/contact information for 2‐3 references to Dr. Helen Tremlett: info.pimsgroup@gmail.com [cc in: helen.tremlett@ubc.ca].

The position will remain open until filled. To apply, please send your letter of interest, CV and names/contact information for 2‐3 references to Dr. Helen Tremlett: info.pimsgroup@gmail.com [cc in: helen.tremlett@ubc.ca].

Research Asst/Tech 3
Job Summary

The successful applicant will be responsible for coordinating the research efforts of a recently funded epidemiological research project spanning four provinces in Canada. The coordinating site is based at UBC. Tasks include ensuring consistency in the ethics applications across sites, overseeing the health-related data access requests in each province, and technical descriptions of the cohorts and data extraction. As the processes and data access differs by province, the successful individual will work closely with the relevant personnel within each province to ensure consistency across sites. The successful individual will also develop efficient methods of sharing information across sites, documenting decisions made, and ensuring the overall project keeps to the timelines and goals set. This will include arranging regular meetings between the sites including booking rooms, video conferencing, preparing agendas, recording minutes, performing literature reviews, coordinating references, facilitating submission of findings for publication and presentation at national and international conferences. Other specific interesting challenges will include access to emergency room visit data and ethnicity information (an exploratory aspect of the current study). The research coordinator will also support the overall efforts of the UBC group – the Pharmacoepidemiology in MS (PiMS) research group, with tasks ranging from facilitating grant submissions and publications through to supervising summer students and updating the groups website.
Organizational Status
The Research Coordinator will report directly to the Supervisor, but will interact/work closely with the clinicians, staff members, students, post-doctoral fellows, data analysts and research associates of the UBC MS Clinic/PiMS Research Group as well as the other multi-disciplinary team members across Canada.
Work Performed
Project Coordination/Management:
- Assist in the preparation, submission and coordination of ethics applications by summarizing study progress, uploading publications, and adding investigators as needed 10%
- Assist in the preparation and submission of grant applications (collating and formatting CV’s, uploading documents, obtaining letters of support) 10%
- Facilitate study protocol preparations (assist in the development, planning and organization of logistical study procedures)
- Oversee study logistics and implementation of study protocol
- Assist in preparation of research publications/presentations, including preparing and formatting figures and uploading documents for journal submission
- Conduct basic literature searches
Liaise and facilitate collaborations with health care professionals, research groups/researchers, and other supporting staff (coordinate studies with MS clinic – neurologists, receptionist, technicians; arrange teleconference calls with national contacts – e.g. StatsCan; liaise/coordinate with other universities for national multi-site project)

Provide administrative support to the BC MS Database Committee:
- Coordinate schedules and arrangements for the MS DB Committee meetings; send notices and reminders of meetings
- Prepare and distribute agendas for meetings; attend meetings, record and transcribes meeting minutes; prepare action items and oversee/facilitate completion of action items

Other tasks:
- Assist with computer/technical issues and liaise with MedIT for technical support and for coordination and maintenance of network server/storage
- Provide support to research group offices including maintaining office supplies, computer hardware and software
- Assist in the supervision of directed studies students and summer students
- Prepare and update orientation manual for new, incoming research members
- Facilitate orientation of new members (access to the network, obtaining ID, office access (keys))
- Updating and maintaining the group’s website
Supervision Received
Reports directly to the Supervisor.
Supervision Given
Consequence of Error/Judgement
Any procedure or data record as part of a research study must be accurate and must accurately reflect the work performed. Studies may be jeopardized if not conducted according to ethical requirements as laid out by the University and by regulatory authorities. Study files must be kept secured or patient confidentiality may be compromised.
Undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline or Graduation from a technical college or institute. Minimum of 3 years related experience or the equivalent combination of education and experience. Previous experience with multi-site studies. Working knowledge of research methodology and design. Computer and web proficiency. Effective interpersonal and organizational skills, excellent oral and written communications skills. Ability to work both independently and within a team environment. Ability to work in an interdisciplinary setting. Attention to detail. Highly organized.
UBC hires on the basis of merit and is strongly committed to equity and diversity within its community. We especially welcome applications from visible minority group members, women, Aboriginal persons, persons with disabilities, persons of minority sexual orientations and gender identities, and others with the skills and knowledge to productively engage with diverse communities. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.


Job Title: Research Assistant/Technician 3

Pay Grade: 4

Level Definition: TBC


Faculty: Medicine

Department: Medicine

Division: Neurology

Supervisor: Dr. Helen Tremlett

Location: S178‐2211 Wesbrook Mall, UBC Hospital


Under general direction, the position is responsible for the performance of complex data

programming and analyses related to varied biostatistical / epidemiological research.


▪ Reports directly to the Principal Investigator

▪ Interacts and works closely with the students, researchers and staff members of the harmacoepidemiology in MS (PiMS) research group. Particularly with the groups’ data analyst and biostatistician

▪ Maintains contact with other collaborating organizations, as required


▪ Study may be jeopardized if not conducted according to ethical requirements as laid out by the University and by regulatory authorities

▪ Study files must be kept secured to ensure that patient confidentiality is not compromised

▪ An error within the realm of a research study may result in biased or incomplete data and skewed study results


The office is on the second floor of the Koerner Pavilion in the UBC Hospital with fluorescent lighting. There are no known hazards.


▪ Cleaning and rearranging linked administrative health and clinical data; creating variables suitable to be included in complex longitudinal models

▪ Conducting complex analysis and interpretation of results for ongoing studies funded by the US National Multiple Sclerosis Society, including, but not limited to: ‘Do the beta‐interferons prolong life in people with multiple sclerosis?’; ‘Prodromal Multiple Sclerosis: The PrOMS Study’; ‘Adherence to Immunomodulators in Multiple Sclerosis: Prevalence and Clinical Impact of Multiple Sclerosis (The AIMS Study)’

▪ Facilitating data cleaning and coding within multiple sites across Canada; ensuring consistent or comparable approaches between sites

▪ Assisting with drafting papers for publication, specifically contributing to the methodology and results sections

▪ Providing support for other members of the PiMS team in their data analyses, as required

▪ Assisting with samples size calculations for the PiMS group to use in grant applications (in collaboration with other members of the group)


▪ The incumbent will have the opportunity to exercise a moderate amount of judgement, responsibility, and initiative on tasks pertaining to his/her work.


▪ Works under minimum supervisory direction.




▪ University degree in a relevant discipline, and a minimum of 3 years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience

▪ Experience with large datasets and data programming essential

▪ Working knowledge of research methodology, study design and statistical analyses

▪ Computer proficiency, including use of statistical software, including, R, SAS, SPSS

▪ Experience with health administrative data would be an asset

▪ Experience with, and knowledge about, special populations such as patients with chronic disease or multiple sclerosis would be an asset

▪ Appropriate knowledge of medical ethics

▪ Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication skills

▪ Ability to exercise judgment and make decisions in accordance with the broad research objectives

▪ Ability to independently organize workload

▪ Ability to work in an interdisciplinary setting

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

Pharmacoepidemiology in MS (PiMS)
2211 Wesbrook Mall,
Vancouver, BC, V6T 2B5, Canada

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