HP4C1E      Half Unit
Economic Analysis for Health Policy

This information is for the 2017/18 session.

Teacher responsible

Professor Andrew Street


This course is compulsory on the Executive MSc in Health Economics, Outcomes and Management in Cardiovascular Sciences. This course is not available as an outside option.

Course content

The course will serve as an introduction to major developments in the economics of health and health care. It will provide medical practitioners with a strong understanding of the role economics can play in health policy and health system administration. It will provide a framework with which to understand the changing nature of health care supply and delivery and the interactions between patients and health care systems.  It will review major changes in the financing and delivery of health care and both domestic and international efforts to control health care costs and improve efficiency.

Seminar sessions will focus on current policy debates in the area of health and health care drawing on the theory and evidence from the lectures augmented by current readings from both academic and popular sources.


15 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the MT.

This will include 10 x 90 minutes of interactive lectures and 5 x 120 minutes of case-study based seminars.

Formative coursework

An 800-word “mock” blog entry for The Conversation, which covers policy-relevant issues and often has academic contributors. A series of topics will be provided to students to choose from.

Indicative reading

Pauly M. The economics of moral hazard, American Economic Review, June 1968, 58(3). Coupled with Gladwell M. The Moral Hazard Myth. The Bad Idea Behind our failed Health-care System [www.gladwell.com/archive.html].

Manning W et al, Health Insurance and the demand for medical care: evidence from a randomized experiment, American Economic Review, June 1987, pp. 251-277.

Summers L. Some simple economics of mandated benefits, American Economic Review, May, 1989.

Thomson S et al. Financing Health Care in the European Union, European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, 2009.

Skinner JS, Chandra A, Goodman DC, Fisher ES. The elusive connection between health care spending and quality. Health Affairs 2009;28(1):w119–23. Coupled with Gawande A. The cost conundrum, The New Yorker, 1 June 2009,

Currie J. Healthy, wealthy, and wise? Socioeconomic status, poor health in childhood, and human capital development, Journal of Economic Literature, 2009;47(1):87–122.

Stabile M, Thomson S et al. Containing health care costs in high-income countries: evidence from four nations, Health Affairs 2013;32(4):643–652.

Cutler D. Your Money or Your Life, Oxford University Press, 2005.

A selection of articles from the popular press by high quality journalists and public intellectuals on policy issues in health and health care.


Other (70%) and other (30%).

The two assessments will be:

1. “Journal referee report” for a health economics paper, which will include 2 elements: a summary and critical appraisal of the paper (1500 words) and a peer-review report with suggestions for improving the paper (1000 words). This assessment will evaluate the students’ ability in summarising, applying, and critically appraising the relevance of health economics concepts to a health policy.

2. Individual-based video presentation. Students will be asked to record a video on their own on a topic that will be assigned to them. This will assess the students’ ability to describe, summarise, apply, critically appraise, and communicate the concepts learned in class to a particular case study.

Key facts

Department: Health Policy

Total students 2016/17: Unavailable

Average class size 2016/17: Unavailable

Controlled access 2016/17: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Commercial awareness
  • Specialist skills

Course survey results

(2015/16 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 100%



Reading list (Q2.1)


Materials (Q2.3)


Course satisfied (Q2.4)


Lectures (Q2.5)


Integration (Q2.6)


Contact (Q2.7)


Feedback (Q2.8)


Recommend (Q2.9)