MSc Health Policy, Planning and Financing

  • Graduate taught
  • Department of Health Policy
  • Application code Apply through the LSHTM
  • Starting 2020
  • UK/EU full-time: Contact LSHTM
  • UK/EU part-time: Contact LSHTM
  • Overseas full-time: Contact LSHTM
  • Overseas part-time: Contact LSHTM
  • Location: Houghton Street, London

The MSc Health Policy, Planning and Financing teaches you to critically analyse issues in health policy, planning and financing and enables you to devise appropriate health policy responses. This is a joint programme with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM).

Taking a multidisciplinary approach to formulate, design, implement, evaluate and appraise health policies and plans will enable you to work in health policy and planning roles in national governments, international organisations, research and management consultancy, industry and the voluntary sector.

As part of an international cohort who have all worked in health policy or public health services, students broaden their understanding of health related issues. Students’ experiences from social science, medicine, health service management, health care providers, national health care systems, international agencies and NGOs helps to enrich the learning environment and offers a broad range of perspectives.

You will learn financing models for health care, health economics, health policy and politics, and explore the many challenges facing modern health care systems. In addition to this you will be able to choose a wide range courses, allowing you to specialise in a specific field or explore a variety of topics. 

The programme provides training relevant to countries at all levels of development, although you can choose to specialise.

The LSE Department of Health Policy offers a wide range of programmes in health policy and health economics. Visit our website to find out which programme is best for you.

Teaching and learning in Michaelmas Term 2020 
Information on how LSE will deliver teaching and learning in Michaelmas term can be found here.

Programme details

Key facts

MSc Health Policy, Planning and Financing
Start date Late September 2020 at LSHTM
Application deadline None – rolling admissions. However please note the funding deadlines
Duration 12 months full-time, 24 months part-time
Availability See LSHTM website
Tuition fee See LSHTM website
Minimum entry requirement See LSHTM website
GRE/GMAT requirement None
English language requirements See LSHTM website
Location  Houghton Street, London (LSE), and Keppel Street, London (LSHTM)

For more information about tuition fees and entry requirements, see the fees and funding and assessing your application sections.

Entry requirements

Minimum entry requirements for MSc Health Policy, Planning and Financing

You must satisfy the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine general entrance requirements and the additional programme-specific entrance requirements, to be considered for admission.

See LSHTM entrance requirements

Programme structure and courses

You will take the LSE course Financing Health Care, and one compulsory choice between two options at LSHTM. In addition, you will choose courses from a range of possible combinations at both LSE and LSHTM. In addition, you will complete a 10,000-word dissertation on any topic in the field.



(* denotes a half unit) 

Financing Health Care* (LSE)
This course aims to give students a thorough grounding in health financing policy. It focuses on the health financing functions of collecting revenue, pooling funds and purchasing services, as well as on policy choices concerning coverage, resource allocation and market structure. The course mainly draws on examples from health financing policy in European countries, but the general principles studied apply internationally.

Health Services* (LSHTM)
Provides students with a range of ways of thinking about health services and health systems. Drawing on epidemiology, history, medicine, economics and sociology, the module will help students understand how services function, the reasons services have developed in the way they have, the basis of some universal, persistent problems, and possible solutions to such difficulties.
Health Policy Process and Power (LSHTM)*
Equips students to study or work in the health policy arena at international, national and local levels, including: reviewing different basic theoretical approaches and concepts used in policy analysis; analysing the political system within which policies are made and the contextual factors that influence policy change; identifying the different arenas involved in health policy, the actors within these arenas, and the key features of processes of policy identification, formulation, and implementation; and planning how to use in research and/or decision-making the policy analysis framework introduced during the course. 

Dissertation for MSc Health Policy, Planning and Financing (LSE)
The dissertation is an independent research project of 10,000 words on any topic in the field of health policy, planning and/or financing. The main body of the dissertation should include the background to the research, method of investigation, results of the analysis, discussion and policy implications and recommendations.

Courses to the value of two and a half units from a range of options at LSE and LSHTM

To find the most up-to-date list of optional courses please visit the relevant School Calendar page

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will always notify the affected parties as early as practicably possible and propose any viable and relevant alternative options. Note that that the School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to events outside of its control, which includes but is not limited to a lack of demand for a course or programme of study, industrial action, fire, flood or other environmental or physical damage to premises.

You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. Please note that changes to programmes and courses can sometimes occur after you have accepted your offer of a place. These changes are normally made in light of developments in the discipline or path-breaking research, or on the basis of student feedback. Changes can take the form of altered course content, teaching formats or assessment modes. Any such changes are intended to enhance the student learning experience. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the updated graduate course and programme information page.

Teaching and assessment

Contact hours and independent study

Within your programme you will take a number of courses, often including half unit courses and full unit courses. In half unit courses, on average, you can expect 20-30 contact hours in total and for full unit courses, on average, you can expect 40-60 contact hours in total. This includes sessions such as lectures, classes, seminars or workshops. Hours vary according to courses and you can view indicative details in the Calendar within the Teaching section of each course guide

You are also expected to complete independent study outside of class time. This varies depending on the programme, but requires you to manage the majority of your study time yourself, by engaging in activities such as reading, note-taking, thinking and research. 

Teaching methods

LSE is internationally recognised for its teaching and research and therefore employs a rich variety of teaching staff with a range of experience and status. Courses may be taught by individual members of faculty, such as lecturers, senior lecturers, readers, associate professors and professors. Many departments now also employ guest teachers and visiting members of staff, LSE teaching fellows and graduate teaching assistants who are usually doctoral research students and in the majority of cases, teach on undergraduate courses only. You can view indicative details for the teacher responsible for each course in the relevant course guide


All taught courses are required to include formative coursework which is unassessed. It is designed to help prepare you for summative assessment which counts towards the course mark and to the degree award. LSE uses a range of formative assessment, such as essays, problem sets, case studies, reports, quizzes, mock exams and many others. Summative assessment may be conducted during the course or by final examination at the end of the course.All full-unit courses are assessed by three hour unseen examinations in the summer term. Half-units are assessed by two hour unseen examinations. Some of the half-unit optional courses also have group/individual project work as part of the assessment. An indication of the formative coursework and summative assessment for each course can be found in the relevant course guide.

Academic support

You will also be assigned an academic mentor who will be available for guidance and advice on academic or personal concerns.

LSE is committed to enabling all students to achieve their full potential and the School’s Disability and Wellbeing Service provides a free, confidential service to all LSE students and is a first point of contact for all disabled students.


Career destinations after graduation are wide and varied, reflecting the diverse international mix and multi-disciplinary nature of the Health Policy, Planning and Financing class. Graduates from the programme are typically employed by national governments, international organisations, research/management consultancy, industry and the voluntary sector.

Further information on graduate destinations for this programme

Mentorship Programme

As a student in the LSE Department of Health Policy, you will be able to apply to take part in our Mentorship Programme. The programme connects current students with one of our alumni, active in a wide range of fields, to provide career mentoring as students graduate from the MSc courses. The programme gives students greater insight into career prospects after graduation and will help students build connections with current health policy leaders and experts to build their network. Learn more about the programme and our mentors on our website.

Support for your career

Many leading organisations give careers presentations at the School during the year, and LSE Careers has a wide range of resources available to assist students in their job search. Find out more about the support available to students through LSE Careers.

Student stories


Camille, France



Francis, Nigeria



Nuha, United Kingdom
“I would definitely recommend this programme to people who are passionate about health and eager to learn and grow under amazing guidance and mentorship. There are a host of opportunities available to you at the LSE, from career support to research opportunities, and the availability of many events in different fields means you can always continue learning and growing. The teaching support has been excellent, since the professors and seminar leaders are interested in your thoughts and development. From the day I started this MSc, I knew I wanted to savor each one, however stressful it may have been, and I am grateful to have been able to enjoy it as much as I could have done this year! My year at the LSE will always be fondly remembered as the place I grew the most and connected with people from around the world, and this experience has taught me so much about making the most of whatever opportunities come my way.“



Mayank, India
Medical Officer/Physician

“The experience of studying this programme at LSE has been truly incredible. I strongly feel I have gathered the much-needed skillset which I was missing as a physician and would now steer my new career path in health policy. The most attractive feature about this programme was the range of students from varied professional backgrounds and work experience. I learned a lot from the many discussions with my peers inside and outside the lecture rooms. Also, getting exposure of two world class institutions (LSE & LSHTM) was highly significant for me to choose this programme. And to top it all, the excellent faculty at LSE made the entire journey very comforting and enriching. Students looking forward to applying for this programme should be prepared for a year of insightful academics along with career events, socials and outstation trips with friends. Reflecting on my time at LSE just feels that it ended too soon!“



Jasmine, Canada
Internal Medicine Resident Physician

“As a front line healthcare worker, I entered the Health Policy, Planning and Financing programme with the skills to care for my individual patients. The programme has provided me with the knowledge and skills to advocate for ALL my patients  at the policy level. The value of this programme is in its networking and work opportunities that supplement the in-class learning. By the end of the MSc, I was applying my degree to make substantial transformations to a real national health system. It was these experiences offered by the programme that exceeded my expectations.“  



Angel, Spain
Head of Delegation for Algeria/Sahara, Spanish Red Cross

“I have been a humanitarian aid worker for the past 10 years as a health delegate on a wide variety of missions helping vulnerable people across the world. While working I have taken a few breaks where I have studied new international protocols and continued my education and studies, including my MSc at LSE. The mix of fieldwork and studying has really helped me develop my professional skills and I have been able to apply these in my missions for the Red Cross.

The degree content at LSE was exactly what I was looking for, providing me with the perfect mix of economics and health policy which has given me great support in my professional development. The professors on my course were excellent, not just in their teaching but also in their one to one interaction where I was able to learn about their experiences and gain invaluable advice. Attracting the brightest minds in the world LSE gave me the opportunity to make great friendships and contacts with people who share similar passions and interests as me. My only regret is that the experience was all too short and I wish I could have stayed longer, but I am extremely happy with everything my time at LSE has provided me.“


Meet the students of the LSE Department of Health Policy



Fees and funding

Tuition fees and funding opportunities 2020/21 for MSc Health Policy, Planning and Financing

See fee and funding information on LSHTM website


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