I feel like Malaysia is lacking biostatistician. We do have a lot qualified biostatistician but not enough practicing biostatistician. In Malaysia, in most universities especially UKM, UM & USM, biostatistics is taught together with epidemiology. Eventhough there are similarities between epid & biostat but they are different. I am not practicing epid that much now so my knowledge on epid is disappearing. But talking about biostatistician, for medical & health research in Malaysia, we need to produce more and more biostatistician.
The issue now is whether we produce non-doctor biostatistician or doctor biostatistician? For some, they said it is a waste for medical doctor to do anything else other than medicine. Well….then Dr Mahathir is the example of major waste in the country. So do few of other leaders, oppositions alike.
I feel that medical doctor should take up biostatistic with epidemiology as elective (rather than core subjects) if they want to be a biostatistician or medical statistics. We know the lingo. We can easily understand what clients want. For non-doctors, they need to practice longer time to understand medical & health terms.
Secondly, being statistician, even though we need to learn mathematics & know the basics of everything but when talking to clients, we should speak their ‘language’ i.e. medical & health language and not statistical jargons. Just hide certain details like covariance, estimate, likelihood etc. Convert these terms to miningful meaningful terms for the clients.
Thirdly, educate the clients. Tell them when to use standard deviation and when to use standard error for example. But tell them slowly & must provide example.
Lastly, don’t print all the statistical output to them. Select relevant tables & graphs only. Guide them on how to report those findings.