Dr Genevieve Cezard is a fellow of the Big Data for Complex Diseases driver programme and a
statistician-epidemiologist in the Cardiovascular Epidemiology Unit at the University of Cambridge. Genevieve’s research focuses on leveraging linked electronic health records to understand and improve population health in the UK. Her research interests include health inequalities, disease associations and the development of multiple long-term conditions.

Genevieve joined academia in 2010, initially as a statistician at the University of Edinburgh, awakening her interest in social epidemiology. In 2016 she was awarded a competitive St Leonard’s and Geography & Sustainable Development PhD studentship at the University of St Andrews to study ethnic differences in health in Scotland. She followed on to research social inequalities in disease trajectories and showed that it is possible to distinguish and characterise different typical multimorbidity trajectories based on a small number of diseases. She joined the University of Cambridge in 2021 to explore the relationship between COVID-19 infections and vaccinations and the development of chronic conditions. Notably, she was the lead analyst for England on the first epidemiological study to use individual-level electronic health records data covering the entire UK population to provide a UK-wide picture of under-vaccination and its associated risk factors and adverse outcomes. These results are being used to help create health policy and public health interventions to improve vaccine uptake.

Within her current fellowship, Genevieve investigates the relationship between diabetes and the development of multiple long-term conditions and aims to identify distinct disease trajectories and their underlying mechanisms.

About Genevieve’s Big Data for Complex Disease Fellowship project

Diabetes is associated with a range of complications such as heart, kidney, eye and foot conditions. In addition, people with diabetes are at higher risk of getting multiple diseases compared to people without diabetes. The set of diseases which affect people with diabetes has shifted over time due to improved risk management of these complications and because of the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic (i.e. change in lifestyle, reduced access to health services and increased risk of developing new diseases).

This fellowship focuses on the additional longer-term conditions that people with a new diagnosis of diabetes develop. The health journeys of people with diabetes compared to those without diabetes will be followed during the unique period of the COVID-19 era (2020-27) when lifestyles and access to health services changed dramatically. Using hospital and GP health records across the entire populations of England, Scotland and Wales (around 70 million people in total), this research will study the health consequences of having a new diagnosis of diabetes and for diverse population subgroups (by sex, age, ethnicity, socio-economic status and region). The results will inform guidelines on how people with diabetes can be best followed up in England, Scotland and Wales.