We are delighted to announce that we will be joined by Robin Flaig, Ruth Gilbert and Rich Fry, who will be presenting three interlinked presentations on behalf of HDR UK. This will be followed by a presentation from Vahé Nafilyan, statistician and assistant deputy director at the ONS.

The three talks from HDR UK will highlight research and novel linked databases that connect information on the social and physical environments in which people live to administrative health data generated by the NHS and other services, such as education and social care. Anonymised linkage through place can generate insights for policy on how health problems cluster in households or areas, and how where we live and with whom affects our health. The research aims to inform public health interventions to reduce health inequalities.

We will then be joined by Vahé Nafilyan, who will provide an insight into the ONS’s innovative Public Health Data Asset – a series of data pipelines that combine the census and latest health data.


  • 13:30 – Lara Edwards (Chair), Programme Director, Driver Programmes, HDR UK – Welcome
  • Robin Flaig, The UK Longitudinal Linkage Collaboration: a national TRE linking Longitudinal Population Studies’ data with health, socio-economic and place based data
  • Ruth Gilbert, Overview of the ECHILD database: a family perspective
  • Rich Fry, SAIL approach to place-based linkage in Wales
  • 14:20 – Q&A
  • 14:30 – Vahé Nafilyan – Linked Data for Health Analysis: the ONS Public Health Data Asset
  • 14:45 – Q&A
  • 15:00 – Close

About the speakers:

Robin Flaig

Robin Flaig is Co-Director of the UK Longitudinal Linkage Collaboration. Robin works on linking health data to Longitudinal Population Studies across the UK and leads UK LLC’s Access, Communications and Public Involvement Teams. Robin is also the Operations Manager for Generation Scotland, Scotland’s largest family health study.

The UK Longitudinal Linkage Collaboration (UK LLC) is a new research infrastructure designed to support the secure analysis of linked longitudinal population study data.

Ruth Gilbert

Professor Ruth Gilbert is a clinical epidemiologist, who trained in paediatrics. She is Co-Director of the HDRUK Social and Environmental Determinants of Health Driver Programme that seeks to link a wealth of geospatial and household information through anonymised linkage to administrative health data across the life course. She co-leads the ECHILD database, which links all NHS hospital contacts on children and young people to their education and social care records over more than 2 decades. She co-directs the NIHR Children and Families Policy Research Unit, which conducts research for the Department of Health and Social Care.

Rich Fry

Rich Fry is an Associate Professor Environment and Health at Swansea University and Co-Director of the Population Data Science Research Institute at Swansea University. He specialises in developing and linking geospatial models of the natural and built environment to anonymised linked electronic health records and administrative data, to better understand the impacts of where and how we live on population health and wellbeing. Rich is Co-Director of HDR Wales, Associate Director of the Social and Environment Driver Programme and an academic lead for ADR Wales.

Vahé Nafilyan

Vahé Nafilyan is a statistician and assistant deputy director at the UK Office for National Statistics. He leads the health modelling hub, a group of teams building and analysing linked data to provide new insights on important public health issues. He holds a PhD in economics from King’s College London.

Contact details

Sophie Almond | External Communications Officer | Health, Population and Methods Communications

Office for National Statistics | Swyddfa Ystadegau Gwladolsophie.almond@ons.gov.uk