Rebecca Hubbard, PhD
Research interests and experience
- Biostatistics: methods for multistate disease processes; hierarchical models; Bayesian methods; methods for longitudinal observational studies
- Cancer control: biostatistics; breast cancer; colorectal cancer
- Aging & geriatrics: biostatistics; Alzheimer’s disease; healthy aging
- Health services & economics: biostatistics; evaluation of screening programs; health outcomes research
Associate Investigator and Biostatistician Rebecca Hubbard leads innovative research to develop statistical approaches for longitudinal observational studies of cancer screening that help people make more informed decisions. Her work addresses important questions about how best to balance benefits and harms of alternative strategies for cancer screening and detection.
Since joining GHRI in 2008, Dr. Hubbard has played an integral role in the Statistical Coordinating Center (SCC) of the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium (BCSC)—a National Cancer Institute (NCI)-funded network of mammography registries that serves as the nation’s largest longitudinal collection of breast imaging data. She is the principal investigator of the BCSC Data Resource, which provides data and analytic support for researchers worldwide who use BCSC data to answer important questions about breast cancer screening. She also leads all SCC projects that use Medicare data. Collectively, these projects are helping researchers, policymakers, providers, and patients understand the relationship between cancer screening and health care utilization more broadly.
At a time when the nation is grappling with questions about best practices for cancer screening—especially for breast cancer—Dr. Hubbard is also developing new statistical methods for estimating the long-term implications of repeat cancer screening. She used this novel approach in a 2011 breast cancer study that examined false-positive results from screening mammograms for 169,000 women in the BCSC database. Her team found that, on average, more than half of women screened yearly for a decade would have a false-positive result—and that having prior mammograms for comparison cut the odds of a false-positive result in half. Published in the Annals of Internal Medicine (see news release), Dr. Hubbard’s paper was recognized as one of the top 12 publications of 2011 funded by NCI’s Epidemiology and Genomics Research Program.
Among Dr. Hubbard’s other statistical interests are hierarchical models, Bayesian methods, and multistate models including Markov processes. Her other areas of application include colorectal cancer and aging and dementia. Dr. Hubbard serves as a journal referee and belongs to professional organizations including the International Biometric Society and the American Statistical Association (ASA). In 2008, the ASA’s biometrics section gave her the David P. Byar Young Investigator Award. Dr. Hubbard also has a master’s degree in epidemiology and serves as an affiliate assistant professor in biostatistics at the University of Washington.
Hubbard RA, Zhu W, Horblyuk R, Karliner L, Sprague BL, Henderson L, Lee D, Onega T, Buist DS, Sweet A. Diagnostic imaging and biopsy pathways following abnormal screen-film and digital screening mammography. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2013 Apr;138(3):879-87. doi: 10.1007/s10549-013-2466-5. Epub 2013 Mar 8. PubMed
Goldman LE, Walker R, Hubbard R, Kerlikowske K. Timeliness of abnormal screening and diagnostic mammography follow-up at facilities serving vulnerable women. Med Care. 2013 Apr;51(4):307-14. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0b013e318280f04c. Epub 2013 Jan 25. PubMed
Kerlikowske K, Zhu WW, Hubbard R, Gellar B, Dittus K, Braithwaite D, O’Meara E, Wernli KJ, Miglioretti D, for the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium. Outcomes of screening mammography by frequency, breast density and postmenopausal hormone therapy. JAMA Intern Med. 2013;():1-10. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.307.
Kerlikowske K, Zhu W, Hubbard RA, Geller B, Dittus K, Braithwaite D, Wernli KJ, Miglioretti DL, O'Meara ES. Outcomes of screening mammography by frequency, breast density, and postmenopausal hormone therapy. JAMA Intern Med. 2013 Mar 18:1-10. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.307 [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Braithwaite D, Zhu W, Hubbard RA, O'Meara ES, Miglioretti DL, Geller B, Dittus K, Moore D, Wernli KJ, Mandelblatt J, Kerlikowske K, for the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium. Screening outcomes in older U.S. women undergoing multiple mammograms in community practice: does interval, age or comorbidity score affect tumor characteristics or false positive rates? J Natl Cancer Inst. 2013 Mar 6;105(5):334-41. doi: 10.1093/jnci/djs645. Epub 2013 Feb 5. PubMed
Hubbard RA, Miglioretti DL. A semiparametric censoring bias model for estimating the cumulative risk of a false-positive screening test under dependent censoring. Biometrics. 2013 Mar;69(1):245-53. doi: 10.1111/j.1541-0420.2012.01831.x. Epub 2013 Feb 5. PubMed
Ding VY, Hubbard RA, Rutter CM, Simon GE. Assessing the accuracy of profiling methods for identifying top providers: performance of mental health care providers. Health Serv Outcomes Res Methodol. 2013;13(1):1-17. Epub 2012 Sep 18. PubMed
Gray SL, Anderson ML, Hubbard RA, LaCroix A, Crane PK, McCormick W, Bowen JD, McCurry SM, Larson EB. Frailty and incident dementia. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2013 Feb 18 [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Imel ZE, Hubbard RA, Rutter CM, Simon G. Patient-rated alliance as a measure of therapist performance in two clinical settings. J Consult Clin Psychol. 2012 Dec 10 [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Hubbard RA, Zhu W, Onega TL, Fishman P, Henderson LM, Tosteson AN, Buist DS. Effects of digital mammography uptake on downstream breast-related care among older women. Med Care. 2012;50(12):1053-9. PubMed
To view more publications, please see Dr. Hubbard's CV.