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Staff Scientist 1 -- Data Wrangler

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) is one of 27 Institutes and Centers at the National Institutes of Health. NLM is a global leader in biomedical informatics and computational health data science and the world’s largest biomedical library. NLM’s legislative mandate is to support the essential work of acquiring, organizing, preserving, and disseminating biomedical information. NLM provides public access to this information 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

NLM Division: Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications

NLM Program/Office: Computational Health Research Branch

Application Period: 09/04/2023 to 10/04/2023

Position Description/Responsibilities:

NLM CHRB is looking for an outstanding candidate with a strong background in the vocabulary of clinical variables, reports, and panels for research studies about coding error rates in large sets of mapping instances from local medical record codes to Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC). This candidate will be responsible for:

  • researching approaches to produce more consistent variable names and data structures for data submitted by independent researchers to a central database;
  • facilitating mappings between local names/codes from various sources and the appropriate standard coding system, i.e., LOINC for tests and measurement and Unified Code for Units of Measure (UCUM) for units of measure;
  • detecting errors in mappings from local codes to LOINC using software tools and suggesting fixes and improvements in those tools;
  • tracking error rates discovered by test type, frequency, and mapping source and developing tables of these rates suitable for publication;
  • managing tables that control validation software and improving the tables as necessary;
  • researching the literature and web sources and working with content experts to determine the meanings of new variables and variables that are incomplete or obscure;
  • authoring and/or participating in writing publications about the processes and inferences from the large real-world mapping files;
  • developing new classes/subclasses (hierarchies) for specified areas of content, as needed, and reviewing the literature and other sources and citing them to justify a particular class organization for use of the validation tools;
  • participating in LOINC committee meetings and regular internal meetings; and
  • performing general editing of content.

Position Requirements:

The ideal candidate may or may not be a United States citizen. We are looking for an individual with:The ideal candidate may or may not be a United States citizen. We are looking for an individual with:

  • an advanced degree in a medically related science, such as M.D., Ph.D., D.O., Clinical Genetics, genetics counselor, Clinical Chemist, or Clinical Microbiologist.
  • experience with the collection and management of clinical data and the use of LOINC, UCUM, and Health Level Seven International Version 2 (HL7 V2);
  • at least one year of experience with clinical or claims data or managing master tables for medical record systems or equivalent
  • Experience with Exel or statistical programs such as SAS or R for building tables and generating simple statistics and distributions.
  • broad knowledge of medical record content, especially names and meanings of tests, measurements, and other diagnostic studies, and general familiarity with structured laboratory and clinical terminology, including the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) units of measure; and
  • strong skills in data manipulation of spreadsheets, statistical software, or Python and in writing.

Federal agencies may request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine. Employees providing healthcare or services in support of healthcare (Healthcare Workforce) may be required to receive a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine because they are expected to perform duties that put them in contact or potential contact with patients. COVID-19 vaccination and other vaccination documentation may be requested from Healthcare Workforce personnel at any point during the onboarding process or at any time during employment with NIH.

Education Requirements

Must have a doctoral degree.

Salary and Benefits:

This non-competitive appointment in the excepted service is like a federal full-time position. Salary will be commensurate with experience and qualifications. A full package of benefits is available.

How to Apply

Interested individuals should send a copy of their CV with the names of three references along with a cover letter detailing research interests and evidence of engagement in multi-disciplinary collaborative research to Please include the announcement number, NLM2189-2022, in the cover letter. Do not include your birth date, social security number (SSN), or personal photograph on application materials.

Review of applications will begin on October 04, 2023. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

Contact Information: Ms. Nikeia Miller

HHS, NIH, and NLM are equal opportunity employers.

Last Reviewed: September 5, 2023