10 Fun Careers in Medicine

Statistical analysis is critical in the medical field. Biostaticians track health events globally and analyze data to relay to the medical community and the public. © Creatas/Thinkstock

If you, too, were startled by the numbers illustrating the infection rate and death estimates of the 2014 West African Ebola outbreak — more than 20,000 cases by early November 2014, maybe more than 1.4 million by the beginning of 2015 — you can thank a biostatistician for that eye-opener [source: Grady].

Biostaticians don't just create and apply mathematical and statistical models to identify and analyze disease outbreaks, though. They're skilled in both math and medicine, and they use these skills to interpret enormous amounts of medical data. Then, they translate the lessons into usable information such as emerging public health trend reports; the risks and effectiveness of new medications, medical treatments and procedures; and analysis of clinical studies.