Document Detail

Analysis of longitudinal data to evaluate a policy change.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18618416     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Longitudinal data analysis methods are powerful tools for exploring scientific questions regarding change and are well suited to evaluate the impact of a new policy. However, there are challenging aspects of policy change data that require consideration, such as defining comparison groups, separating the effect of time from that of the policy, and accounting for heterogeneity in the policy effect. We compare currently available methods to evaluate a policy change and illustrate issues specific to a policy change analysis via a case study of laws that eliminate gun-use restrictions (shall-issue laws) and firearm-related homicide. We obtain homicide rate ratios estimating the effect of enacting a shall-issue law, which vary between 0.903 and 1.101. We conclude that in a policy change analysis it is essential to select a mean model that most accurately characterizes the anticipated effect of the policy intervention, thoroughly model temporal trends, and select methods that accommodate unit-specific policy effects. We also conclude that several longitudinal data analysis methods are useful to evaluate a policy change, but not all may be appropriate in certain contexts. Analysts must carefully decide which methods are appropriate for their application and must be aware of the differences between methods to select a procedure that generates valid inference.
Benjamin French; Patrick J Heagerty
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Statistics in medicine     Volume:  27     ISSN:  0277-6715     ISO Abbreviation:  Stat Med     Publication Date:  2008 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-09-22     Completed Date:  2009-02-12     Revised Date:  2014-05-13    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8215016     Medline TA:  Stat Med     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  5005-25     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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MeSH Terms
Data Interpretation, Statistical*
Firearms / legislation & jurisprudence
Homicide / statistics & numerical data
Longitudinal Studies
Meta-Analysis as Topic
Models, Statistical
Policy Making*
United States
Grant Support

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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