HP421      Half Unit
Economic Analysis for Health Policy in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Mylene Lagarde COW.3.02


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Global Health Policy. This course is available on the MSc in Health Policy, Planning and Financing, MSc in International Health Policy and MSc in International Health Policy (Health Economics). This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


There is no pre-requisite for this course in terms of economic or statistical knowledge. 

Course content

The aim of the course is to provide students with some key analytical methods and concepts used by economists to study health care policies in low- and middle-income countries. The course takes a micro-economic perspective, in that it will study how individuals involved in health care systems (patients, providers, insurers) make decisions which affect the utilisation and delivery of health care services.

The course will present key theoretical concepts and use empirical evidence particularly relevant for policy questions in low- and middle-income settings. The course will be applied in nature, as students will learn through case studies which will expose to different types of data and evidence to analyse decisions made by individuals and then articulate recommendations for health policy.

By the end of this course, students will be able to:

• define fundamental principles and concepts of health economics relevant to health policy challenges in low- and middle-income countries

• understand the economic models of decisions made by individuals on the demand- and supply-side of health care markets in low and middle-income countries;

• apply economic reasoning and models to identify problems and to recommend relevant health care policies;

• refer to seminal literature and evidence in the health economics and health policy fields in low- and middle-income countries;

• be able to interpret simple results from empirical economic studies, and formulate policy recommendations.


15 hours of lectures and 13 hours and 30 minutes of seminars in the LT. 3 hours of help sessions in the ST.

Ten 1.5 hour lectures and nine 1.5 hour seminars, plus a three-hour revision seminar in the ST.

Formative coursework

Coursework assessed throughout the LT and mock exam.

Indicative reading

The course draws from a variety of textbooks and articles, providing essential references to understand the theoretical concepts and read key empirical studies. A complete reading list is provided at the start of the term.

The following papers are a selection of readings used in the course:



Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.

Key facts

Department: Health Policy

Total students 2018/19: 56

Average class size 2018/19: 14

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

Student performance results

(2015/16 - 2017/18 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 4.8
Merit 58.3
Pass 36.9
Fail 0