Nicola Cooper

Professor of Healthcare Evaluation Research

Biostatistics Research Group

Department of Health Sciences
University of Leicester
George Davies Centre, University Road
Leicester, LE1 7RH

Tel: +44 (0)116 229 7267

Personal Details

I am Professor of Healthcare Evaluation Research at the University of Leicester and Deputy Director of the NIHR-funded Complex Reviews Support Unit ( ). My primary research interest is in the interface and integration of medical statistics and health economics.


My research interests include:

· Health technology assessment

· Evidence synthesis (including network meta-analysis and diagnostic test accuracy) and its integration within a decision modelling context

· Data visualisation in health technology assessment

· Economic evaluation alongside clinical trials

· Bayesian methods in healthcare

Web-based tools developed by the Complex Reviews Support Unit

MetaInsight: An interactive web-based tool for the analysis and interrogation of network meta-analyses (frequentist and Bayesian).

· Binary :

· Continuous:

MetaDTA: An interactive web-based tool for the analysis and interrogation of diagnostic test accuracy meta-analyses



View a full list of publications on PubMed

Selected Publications

  • Freeman SC, Sutton AJ, Cooper NJ. Current challenges in the synthesis of continuous and time-to-event outcomes for health technology assessment. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 2020.
  • Owen R, Bradbury N, Xin Y, Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ. MetaInsight: An interactive web-based tool for analyzing, interrogating and visualizing network meta-analyses using R-shiny and netmeta. Research Synthesis Methods. 2019. 99: 64-74.
  • Freeman SC, Scott NW, Powell R, Johnston M, Sutton AJ, Cooper NJ. Utilising component network meta-analysis to identify the most effective components of psychological preparation for adults undergoing surgery under general anaesthesia. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 2018.
  • Owen RK, Cooper NJ, Quinn TJ, Lees R, Sutton AJ. Network meta-analysis of diagnostic test accuracy studies identifies and ranks the optimal diagnostic tests and thresholds for healthcare policy and decision making. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 2018.
  • Achana F, Sutton AJ, Kendrick D, Hayes M, Jones DR, Hubbard SJ, Cooper NJ. A decision analytic model to investigate the cost-effectiveness of poisoning prevention practices in households with young children. BMC Public Health 2016; 16: 705.
  • Boyle P, Smith LK, Cooper NJ, Williams KS, O’Connor H. Gender balance: Women are funded more fairly in social science. Nature 2015; 525(7568): 181-183.
  • Achana F, Hubbard SJ, Sutton AJ, Cooper NJAn exploration of synthesis methods in public health evaluations of interventions concludes that the use of modern statistical methods would be beneficial. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 2014; 67(4): 376-390.
  • Achana F, Cooper NJ, Bujkiewicz S, Hubbard SJ, Kendrick D, Jones DR, Sutton AJ. Network meta-analysis of multiple outcome measures accounting for borrowing of information across outcomes. BMC Medical Research Methodology 2014; 14: 92.  doi:10.1186/1471-2288-14-92
  • Bujkiewicz S, Thompson JR, Sutton AJ, Cooper NJ, Harrison MJ, Symmons DPM, Abrams KR. Use of Bayesian Multivariate Meta-Analysis to Estimate the HAQ for Mapping Onto the EQ-5D Questionnaire in Rheumatoid Arthritis. Value in Health 2014; 17(1): 109-115.
  • Saramago P*, Cooper NJ*, Sutton AJ, Kendrick D. Cost-effectiveness of interventions for increasing the possession of functioning smoke alarms in households with pre-school children: a modelling study. BMC Public Health 2014; 14: 459 (*Joint first author)
  • Tan SH, Cooper NJ, Bujkiewicz S, Sutton AJ,. Novel presentational approaches were developed for reporting network meta-analysis. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 2014; 67(6): 672-680. doi/10.1016/j.jclinepi.2013.11.006
  • Achana FA, Cooper NJ, Dias S, Lu G, Rice S, Kendrick D, Sutton AJ. Extending methods for investigating the relationship between treatment effect and baseline risk from pairwise meta-analysis to network meta-analysis. Statistics in Medicine 2013; 32(5); 752-771.
  • Bujkiewicz S, Sutton AJ, Abrams KR, Cooper NJ, Spiegelhalter DJ. Transparent interactive decision interrogator-reply to letter to the editor by Michael Coory. Value in Health 2013; 16(1): 216-21.
  • Novielli N, Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ. Evaluating the cost-effectiveness of diagnostic tests in combination: is it important to allow for performance dependency? Value in Health 2013; 16(4): 536-541.
  • Novielli N, Sutton AJ, Cooper NJ. Meta-analysis of the accuracy of two diagnostic tests used in combination: application to ddimer and wells score for the diagnosis of deep vein thrombosis. Value in Health 2013; 16(4): 619-628.
  • Welton NJ, Sutton AJ, Ades AE, Cooper NJ, Abrams KR. Evidence Synthesis for Decision Making (Statistics in Practice). Wiley-Blackwell 2012.
  • Bujkiewicz S, Jones H, Lai M, Cooper NJ, Hawkins N, Pilgrim H, Abrams KR, Spiegelhalter DJ, Sutton AJ.  Development of a Transparent Interactive Decision Interrogator to facilitate the decision-making process in health care. Value in Health 2011; 14(5): 768-776.
  • Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Lai M, Peters J, Abrams KR, Juni P, Wandel S, Paulden M, Welton N, Conti S, Palmer S, Bujkiewicz S, Spiegelhalter DJ.  How valuable are multiple treatment comparison methods in economic decision modelling? Value in Health 2011; 14(2): 371-380. ISPOR ‘Value in Health Paper of the Year Award 2012’
  • Coyle D, Lee K, Cooper NJ. Use of evidence in economic models. In I Shemilt, M Mugford, L Vale, K Marsh, C Donaldson. Evidence based economics: health and other policy domains. Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2010.
  • Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Morris D, Ades AE, Welton NJ. Addressing between-study heterogeneity and inconsistency in mixed treatment comparisons: Application to stroke prevention treatments in individuals with non-rheumatic Atrial Fibrillation. Statistics in Medicine 2009; 28(14): 1861–1881.

  • Sutton AJ, Cooper NJ, Goodacre S, Stevenson M. Integration of meta-analysis and economic decision modelling for evaluating diagnostic testsMedical Decision Making 2008; 28(5): 650-667
  • Welton NJ, Cooper NJ, Ades AE, Sutton AJ. Evidence synthesis of competing interventions when effectiveness outcomes measured inconsistently across trials: Evaluation of antivirals for treatment of influenzaStatistics in Medicine 2008; 27: 5620-5639.
  • Lambert PC, Billingham LJ, Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Abrams KR. Establishing the cost-effectiveness of an intervention in a clinical trial when partial cost information is available: A Bayesian approach.  Health Economics 2008; 17(1): 67-81.
  • Cooper NJ, Lambert PC, Abrams KR, Sutton AJ. Predicting costs over time using Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo methods: An application to early inflammatory polyarthritis. Health Economics 2007; 16(1): 37-56.
  • Sutton AJ, Cooper NJ, Jones DR, Abrams KR, Lambert PL.  Evidence-based sample size calculations for future trials based on meta-analysisStatistics in Medicine 2007; 26: 2476-2500.
  • Cooper NJ, Jones DR, Sutton AJ.  Systematic review results are underused in designing new studies. Clinical Trials 2005; 2(3): 260-264.
  • Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Abrams KR, Turner D, Wailoo A. Comprehensive decision analytical modelling in economic evaluation: A Bayesian approach.  Health Economics 2004:13(3) 203-226.

Erratum HE 2004

WinBUGS 13 code for HE 2004

WinBUGS 14 code for HE 2004

  • Cooper NJ, Mugford M, Symmons DPM, Barrett EM, Scott DGI. Development of resource-use and expenditure questionnaires for use in rheumatology research. Journal of Rheumatology 2003;30(11): 2485-2491.

Resource use and expenditure questionnaire

  • Cooper NJ, Abrams KR, Sutton AJ, Turner D, Lambert P. Use of Bayesian methods for Markov modelling in cost-effectiveness analysis: An application to taxane use in advanced breast cancer. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A 2003; 166(3): 389-405.

Additional tables and figs JRSS 2003

WinBUGS 14 code for HE 2004

  • Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Mugford M. Abrams KR. Use of Bayesian Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods to model cost dataMedical Decision Making 2003: 23: 38-53.

MRC HSRC Workshop

"The Use of Evidence in Economic Decision Models"

The recent methods guidelines for health technology assessments from NICE (2004) recommend ‘all relevant evidence must be identified’ and ‘evidence must be identified, quality assessed and, where appropriate, pooled using explicit criteria and justifiable and reproducible methods’.  The guidelines also state that ‘explicit criteria by which studies are included and excluded’ should be presented.

Two workshops, funded by an MRC HSRC workshop grant, were organised with the aim of producing specific procedural guidance to complement the NICE guidance and to provide a clear definition of all relevant evidence in the context of decision-analytical modelling.

WORKSHOP 1: Establishing the current situation

Dr Zoe Philips, University of Nottingham & Laura Ginnelly, University of York

“Review of guidelines for good practice in decision-analytic modelling in health technology assessment”

Philips.pps Bojke.pps

Dr Nicola Cooper, University of Leicester

“Use of evidence in decision models: An appraisal of health technology assessments in the UK since 1997”


Dr Carole Longson, National Institute for Clinical Excellence

“View from NICE – current issues”


Suzy Paisley, University of Sheffield

“Identifying evidence for decision analytic models”


Paul Tappenden, University of Sheffield

“Ideal versus practical issues of using all available evidence to inform decision model



Debbi Caldwell, University of Bristol

“The potential role of mixed treatment comparisons”


Dr Alex Sutton




WORKSHOP 2: Methodology for appropriate use of evidence in decision models

Louise Longworth, NICE

“Guidelines reporting of evidence identification for the and selection in decision models: the NICE perspective”


Jim Chilcott, Suzy Paisley, University of Sheffield

“Systematising the process: the role of problem structuring methods (PSM) in informing model structure”

Chilcott Paisley Tappenden.pps

Boby Mihaylova, Senior Researcher, University of Oxford.

“Advantages of individual patient data”

Dr Rebecca Turner, MRC Biostatistics Unit, Cambridge

“Addressing differences in rigour and relevance of evidence - a review of existing methods”


Dr Karl Claxton, Dr Neil Hawkins, University of York

“Optimising Drug Development and Efficient Licensing and Reimbursement Rules: The Role of Value of Information Analysis”.


Prof Tony Ades, University of Bristol

“What can we learn from data? A comparison of direct, indirect and observational evidence”Ades.pps

Dr Alex Sutton, University of Leicester



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