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To evaluate the long-term impact of COVID19 on the physical, mental and psychosocial wellbeing of different communities in Israel

COVID-19, an acute infection caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus that first emerged in Wuhan China in December 2019, rapidly became global pandemic and as of January 2021 has infected 100,000,000 individuals and killed over 2 million. Vaccines are bringing hope of bringing the pandemic under control. When the pandemic eventually comes under control, hundreds of millions of individuals will have been infected. It is already apparent that a proportion of individuals are suffering from prolonged symptoms, sometimes described as long COVID. Beyond these prolonged acute episodes, the long term impact of the pandemic on physical, mental and psychosocial well being is unknown. In addition to the direct long term consequences on patients, the pandemic has severely disrupted healthcare services leading to decreased attendance, cancellation of services… this has neither been fully quantified, nor its impact evaluated.
The North of Israel is considered a peripheral zone. It has a diverse population of about 2 million individuals, including Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Druze, and Circassian communities. Compared with the centre of the country it is socio-economically deprived and experience worse health outcomes.
This project aims to better understand the impact of COVID19 on patients’ physical, mental and psychosocial wellbeing in the North of Israel using a longitudinal cohort of COVID19 patients and controls who regularly provide information about their health. The project also aims to assess the impact of the COVID19 pandemic on healthcare services through the systematic analysis of secondary care services process and outcome data. The project will be approached using an inequalities lens, i.e. how different groups comprising the population of Northern Israel have differentially been impacted.

The successful PhD candidate will collect, manage and analyse data provided by the patients enrolled in the cohort and from participating hospitals. The candidate will also be expected to conduct a review of the litteratire on the topic. It is anticipated that the findings will be relevant to other communities across Israel as well as globally. The successful PhD student will be part of the population health group of the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine at Bar-Ilan University. They will be supervised by Professor Michael Edelstein

Candidates are expected to hold a first degree in a related area and a further postgraduate qualification at Masters level in health research, epidemiology, public health, or a related subject. Knowledge and/or experience of quantitative methodologies and statistical packages (R or Stata) are strong advantages. Fluency in English is essential. Knowledge of Hebrew is an advantage but not essential. The candidate must be based in Israel, or willing to relocate, although due to the current COVID19 pandemic it may be possible to begin the fellowship while abroad. The University will provide assistance with regards to visas. The position is based at the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine in Safed, Northern Israel. Starting data is as soon as possible
Applications should be made by email directly to and include:
-A detailed CV (2 pages maximum) including publications if applicable
-A short covering letter in English (1 page maximum) highlighting your motivation for applying and your research experience and capabilities

The student will receive a stipend for the duration of the PhD. The Faculty will assist students with visas and administrative procedures. Relocation support may be available for students from low-income countries.

PhD position
Bar Ilan University
Safed (Tzfat)
Closing date
April 27th, 2021
Posted on
January 27th, 2021 11:54
Last updated
January 27th, 2021 11:54