Epidemiologist / Data Scientist (Environmental Surveillance)

Non Employee Supervisors
North Richmond, California, US
Jul 23, 2021
Aug 03, 2021
Employment Type
Full time
Salary Type
The Division of Communicable Disease Control (DCDC) of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and Heluna Health are recruiting for an Epidemiologist / Data Scientist for an enhanced Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) surveillance system that utilizes wastewater data to augment other COVID-19 surveillance data to inform epidemiologic and public health needs. Wastewater, or sewage, can be tested for RNA from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Pathogen monitoring in wastewater has been used in the surveillance of other infectious diseases, such as polio. This position will serve as an epidemiologist / data scientist on the CDPH wastewater surveillance team and is responsible for analysis, visualization, interpretation, and reporting of wastewater data to inform public health response.

This position will support the data analysis and interpretation of data generated by a developing statewide wastewater surveillance system, in collaboration with a multidisciplinary CDPH team, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the California State Water Resources Control Board (CA State Water Board), California wastewater utilities, public health and non-public health testing laboratories, local health departments, and other partners (e.g., academia, state partners) as appropriate.

The Epidemiologist / Data Scientist will analyze wastewater data alongside epidemiologic data and environmental and laboratory parameters, for use in the public health response to COVID-19. Required data analysis, reporting, and visualization activities include using statistical software to compare multiple existing state COVID-19 data sources with wastewater data including use of multivariable regression models and spatial analyses to better understand trends and burden of disease. The position will also work with other CDPH epidemiology and surveillance teams to integrate and analyze wastewater data in the context of other COVID-19 surveillance efforts, including whole genome sequencing and variant tracking, sentinel site syndromic surveillance, serosurveillance studies, and vaccination surveillance, as appropriate.

This position will also be responsible for data visualization and the design and maintenance of a dashboard. The Epidemiologist / Data Scientist will also work with CDPH and local health departments to summarize and report wastewater surveillance results to inform epidemiologic and programmatic decisions related to COVID-19 prevention and public health response. In addition, this position will support CA State Water Board, wastewater utilities, laboratories, and CDC in wastewater data curation and management, as needed. As needed, this position will also support other projects including, but not limited to, enhanced surveillance projects, outbreak investigations and surge efforts.

Applicants must submit a cover letter and resume to be considered.

This position is a primarily remote working position but occasional in-person presence at the Richmond, CA Campus may be needed.

Must be able to work flexible hours that may include occasional holidays and weekends.

Annual salary range: $70,000 to $75,000

  • Conduct epidemiologic data and spatial data analyses.
  • Link large datasets to other sources of data including spatial datasets.
  • Lead development of visualizations of wastewater surveillance study data including creation and maintenance of online dashboards.
  • Generate summary reports for state and local health leadership
  • Support wastewater data management and infrastructure development, in collaboration with State Water Board, and dedicated data team.
  • Assist in interpretation of wastewater surveillance data to inform epidemiologic and programmatic public health decisions related to COVID-19 disease.
  • Contribute intellectually to the design and implementation of wastewater surveillance to inform the California COVID-19 public health response.
  • Plan and participate in regular conference calls with CDC, Local Health Officers, State Water Board, Sanitation Agencies, and other partners.
  • Present on conference calls with partners, at meetings and scientific conferences.
  • Collaborate with other CDPH epidemiology and surveillance teams to integrate and interpret wastewater data in the context of the overall CDPH COVID-19 response
  • Collaborate with CDC, state and local public health departments, laboratories, sanitation agencies, water boards and other partners (e.g., academia).
  • Collaborate effectively in a team environment.
  • Conduct critical literature review of environmental and wastewater surveillance studies.
  • Collaborate with a data team dedicated to this project.
  • Perform other duties as directed by leadership.

  • Demonstrated ability to effectively communicate orally and in writing with public health and healthcare professionals and internal partners.
  • Understanding of the fundamentals and principles of epidemiology, biostatistics, geographic information systems, spatial analyses, public health and data visualization.
  • Skills in statistics relevant to infectious disease epidemiology, including conception, execution and interpretation of statistics and a preference for experience in statistics tied to real-world or public health implications
  • Ability to perform data entry, clean data, and assess and ensure data quality with attention to detail.
  • Ability to perform statistical and spatial data manipulation and cleaning
  • Knowledge and application of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requirements and protection of health information.
  • High level analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Familiarity with environmental surveillance techniques preferred.
  • Familiarity with statistical modeling preferred.
  • Completes assignments in a timely and efficient manner.
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple tasks, and work independently.
  • Demonstrate reliability and integrity.
  • Fluency in spoken English is required.

  • Master's degree in public health or related field, or equivalent work experience (e.g., 2 or more years in public or environmental health) required.
  • Experience in data entry, management, cleaning and analyzing data.
  • Experience in reporting and visualization of public health or epidemiologic data.
  • Basic knowledge and experience in dashboard design strongly preferred.
  • Intermediate knowledge and experience with statistical software including R programming required.
  • Intermediate knowledge of GIS software such as ArcGIS or QGIS strongly preferred.
  • Familiarity with environmental surveillance techniques preferred.

  • None

Other Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
  • Knowledge of and skilled in the use of Microsoft Office products including Word, Excel, Access, Outlook, and Power Point


Stand Frequently

Walk Frequently

Sit Frequently

Handling / Fingering Frequently

Reach Outward Occasionally

Reach Above Shoulder Occasionally

Climb, Crawl, Kneel, Bend Occasionally

Lift / Carry Occasionally - Up to 50 lbs

Push/Pull Occasionally - Up to 50 lbs

See (Vision) Constantly

Taste/ Smell Not Applicable

Constantly (5+ hrs/day)

Frequently (2 - 5 hrs/day)

Occasionally (0 - 2 hrs/day)

Not Applicable Not required for essential functions


Primarily Remote / but occasional work in Richmond, CA

Must have functioning internet access at remote location. There is no reimbursement for internet access.


It is the policy of Heluna Health to provide equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, genetic information or any other protected characteristic under applicable law.