HP4C5E      Half Unit
Using Health Economics to Analyse and Inform Policy and Practice

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Andrew Street COW 3.03


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 health care sector is extremely complex, and this gives rise to concerns about how the health system should be organised, how incentives should be designed, and how performance should be evaluated. The objective of the course is to give students an introduction to how health systems are constructed, and how the various parts of the system interact; the role of regulation, resource allocation, payment arrangements, and performance measurement; the complexities of evaluating policy and performance; and the contribution that health economics can make to the evaluation and development of health policy. Participants are introduced to variety of econometric methods as the course progresses.


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

Formative coursework

The formative assessment is a 1000 word outline of the summative assessment essay question.

Indicative reading

Bridgewater B, Hickey GL, Cooper G, Deanfield J, Roxburgh J. Publishing cardiac surgery mortality rates: lessons for other specialties BMJ 2013; 346 :f1139

Busse, R, et al (2013), Diagnosis Related Groups in Europe: Moving Towards Transparency, Efficiency, and Quality in Hospitals? British Medical Journal, vol 346, f3197, pp. f3197. DOI: 10.1136/bmj.f3197

Glazer J and McGuire TG. Optimal Risk Adjustment. Chapter 26 Jones A (ed) Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham 2006

Mason, A., Goddard, M., Weatherly, H., & Chalkley, M. (2015). Integrating funds for health and social care: an evidence review. Journal of Health Services Research & Policy, 20(3), 177-188.

Smith PC, Street A. Concepts and Challenges in Measuring the Performance of Health Care Organizations Chapter 30 Jones A (ed) Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham 2006.

Williams A. Economics of coronary artery bypass grafting. Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985; 291 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.291.6491.326


Essay (100%, 5000 words) in the LT.

The course will be assessed on the basis of a 5000 word essay on a specific topic. In writing this essay, students will be able to demonstrate and synthesise what they have learned from the lectures, reading material, group discussions and their own independent research and thinking. 

Formative assessment will be based on a 1000 word outline of the essay. This will give students an opportunity to develop their thoughts ahead of the summative assessment and will allow feedback from course teachers that will guide students when they work on their longer answers.

Due to the executive nature of the course and the 1 week nature of the module, this method of assessment will allow students to work away from campus alongside their professional roles.

Key facts

Department: Health Policy

Total students 2018/19: Unavailable

Average class size 2018/19: Unavailable

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

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