Sarah’s research interests include decision analytic modelling, health technology appraisal and clinical guideline development.
Sarah graduated with a Masters in Physics from the University of Oxford in 2003. Her work in the field of osteoporosis began in 2004 when she took up a graduate placement position as an Operational Researcher at the School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR) at the University of Sheffield. Here she used the Sheffield Osteoporosis model, developed by Professor Matt Stevenson, to estimate the cost-effectiveness of pharmaceutical treatments for osteoporosis to inform national guidance on treatments for osteoporosis in postmenopausal women (covering alendronate, etidronate, risedronate, raloxifene, strontium ranelate and teriparatide) published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). She also collaborated with Professor Kanis and Professor Stevenson on a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Technology Assessment (HTA) funded report on the treatment of glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis.
She is currently a Senior Lecturer in Health Economics at the University of Sheffield where she is a member of the ScHARR Technology Assessment Group (ScHARR-TAG). In 2015, she was the project lead for ScHARR-TAG on the NICE Technology Appraisal of bisphosphonates to prevent fragility fracture. One of the aims of this appraisal was to provide a link between fracture risk assessment using online tools such as QFracture and FRAX, and thresholds for cost-effective treatment. For this appraisal, she developed a new Sheffield Osteoporosis model for estimating the cost-effectiveness of bisphosphonates at varying levels of fracture risk whilst taking into account the variety of different risk factor combinations that may results in a particular risk score. She used a flexible discrete event simulation methodology which facilitates the simulation of a diverse population with varying patient characteristics and allows for an individual’s characteristics and clinical history to influence their pathway through the model. This model was later adapted in 2018 for the NICE technology appraisal of non-bisphosphonates.
She is also Deputy Director of the NICE Decision Support Unit, which provides a methodological and training resource to the NICE Technology Appraisals Programme, and a member of the NICE Highly Specialised Technologies Evaluation Committee