COURSE OF STUDY
LSE Module 1 (Autumn 2019)
GLOBAL HEALTH POLICY
Health policy is no longer purely a government activity, but globalisation and global organisations have impacted on the nature of global health, and the policies created to manage the health needs of the global population. This module critically examines global health policy and normative shifts in understanding global health which impact upon it. The multi-actor framework of global health actors involved in the provision and practice of health policy now includes United Nations agencies (WHO, UNICEF, UNAIDS etc), a number of NGOS, civil society organisations, private sector, foundations, public private partnerships. Each actor has their own priorities for setting the global health agenda, and this module examines the role of each and their impact on health policy at national, regional and global levels. The module will analyse a range of case studies of global health events and global health policies and the governance arrangements made by them. In doing so, this module will draw on contributions from international relations, political science, sociology and public health research.
PAYING FOR HEALTHCARE
This course aims to introduce students to a comparative approach to analysing the development of health care financing, both in theory and in practice, with an emphasis on critical assessment of current and future policy options and issues. 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 developed countries, given these systems are the most advanced, have extensive readily available literature, and are based on best practice principles. However, healthcare system financing in developing countries will also be discussed, albeit to a lesser extent.
EVIDENCE REVIEW AND SYNTHESIS
Faculty: Dr. Mark Newman
Evidence review and synthesis methods (such as systematic reviews and meta-analyses) are increasingly used to evaluate the relative benefits and harms of healthcare interventions. A broad range of decision making bodies across the health care sector (including health technology assessment bodies, drug and medical device licensing agencies, biopharmaceutical industry, and hospitals) need individuals equipped with the methods of reviewing and synthesising the existing body of evidence by performing systematic reviews and meta-analyses. This course will be focused on the principles of reviewing and synthesising the existing body of literature. The course will have three components. The first will provide the rationale for adopting a systematic approach for evidence review and synthesis. It will equip students with the methods to undertake risk of bias assessments of randomised and non-randomised studies. The second component will focus on the quantitative synthesis of multiple studies in meta-analysis. The third component will discuss the opportunities and challenges of using evidence for decision-making.
Chicago Module 2 (Spring 2020)
MICROECONOMICS FOR HEALTH POLICY
Faculty: Dr. Robert Kaestner
This course is the first of a two-part sequence in microeconomic theory. This course covers the theory of consumer choice, the theory of the firm, and the concept of equilibrium. The course will also include applications of economics to global healthcare and health policy issues. The first half of the course focuses on the consumer and the second half explores supply-side economics.
STATISTICS FOR PUBLIC POLICY
Faculty: Dr. Colm O’Muircheartaigh
This course aims to provide students with a basic understanding of statistical analysis for policy research and leadership. This course makes no assumptions about prior knowledge, apart from basic mathematics skills. Examples will draw on current events and global health debates when possible. This course will focus on giving enough statistical knowledge and understand to interpret analysis and use it to make informed policy decision and determine where rigor is lacking.
LEADERSHIP, NEGOTIATION AND ADVOCACY IN HEALTH POLICY: STRATEGIES AND TACTICS
Faculty: Dr. John Burrows
The course discusses two major ‘soft skills’ that are critical to drive successful health policy engagement and reform: Leadership and Negotiation. The course will build on and complement the technical skills that the candidates learn during the Masters in Global Health Policy courses at the Harris School of Public Policy Studies and the London School of Economics and Social Policy. The first couple of lectures will present various leadership styles and provide candidates with practical recommendations to enhance their leadership in Health Policy. The second set of lectures discuss negotiation strategies and tactics and provides students with effective negotiation tactics and strategies to help them prepare for and succeed during negotiations. The third set of classes focus on Advocacy and lobbying in Public and Health Policy. The final sessions are practical cases in leadership, negotiations and advocacy in Health Policy that the candidates will go through to apply the strategies and tactics learned in this course.
The Cure: Harris Policy Project (Summer 2020)
THE CURE: HARRIS POLICY PROJECT is an intensive research project in which students develop a strategy for improving a specific element of the health care system. The project may provide a foundation for the dissertation, and can become a blueprint for an impactful career in health care policy. In this personally-crafted project, students gain experience and mentorship in writing a substantive academic paper, preparing and delivering an executive summary, and presenting evidence-based policy solutions to their local organization.
LSE Module 3 (Autumn 2020)
COST-EFFECTIVENESS IN HEALTH CARE
Faculty: Dr. Alistair McGuire
This course will introduce students to the basic notions of economic evaluation including cost-benefit analysis, cost-utility analysis and cost-effectiveness analysis as applied to the health care sector. The course will discuss notions of welfare economics and extra-welfarism, the identification and measurement of resource costs when markets do not exist (shadow prices), the measurement of health outcomes (including life years gained and Quality Adjusted life-years gained (QALYs)), methods of discounting and the basic calculations involved in estimating the cost-effectiveness of new health care technologies, including Markov modelling. The definition of the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) will be outlined, as will the treatment of uncertainty (including structural (model) uncertainty, sensitivity analysis, and multivariate, parameter uncertainty). The use of bootstrap elements to estimate standard errors for the ICER will be described. Presentation of results, including the use of Acceptability curves, will also be covered. Finally, the use of cost-effectiveness in pharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement will also be detailed.
ECONOMICS OF THE PHARMACEUTICAL SECTOR
Faculty: Dr. Panos Kanavos
The aim of this course is to introduce students to the economics of pharmaceutical sector and related policies and practices that affect national and international markets. The course will provide students with an understanding of basic features of pharmaceutical markets, how pharmaceutical markets work and how competition manifests itself in different parts of pharmaceutical markets. It will illustrate how the pharmaceutical market is linked to the health care market, why it is often the focus of much regulation, and to help students understand the multidimensional goals of pharmaceutical policies. It will introduce students to the economic and policy problems encountered in managing pharmaceutical markets and how to evaluate the impact of alternative policy approaches. The course will also give students some experience in critically evaluating the impact of policy on market outcomes and enable students to analyse pharmaceutical markets from the perspectives of several main actors, governments, third party payers, the pharmaceutical industry, doctors, patients, pharmacists and wholesalers.
MEASURING THE PERFORMANCE OF HEALTH SERVICES AND SYSTEMS
Health systems are increasing introducing more systematic ways to assess the performance of health services and health care organizations. This course aims to consider the new opportunities and challenges associated with the measuring the performance of these entities, and using them to improve performance itself. In particular, the course will examine the key dimension of health care performance, including: health improvement, patient experience and cost of care. This course will explore the types of measurement instruments and analytic tools that are used to measure the performance of the entire health system, but also those used to examine the performance of health care organizations within systems, and examine the implications of these issues for policy makers and regulators. Lectures generally focus on measuring health system performance in high-income countries but draw on the experience of other countries where relevant.
Chicago Module 4 (Spring 2021)
ANALYTICAL POLITICS: THE POLICY-MAKING PROCESS
This course has four objectives, three substantive and one methodological.
The three major substantive themes of the course are (i) the normative foundations of policy making, (ii) how strategic interactions give rise to social dilemmas that create room for public policy to improve social welfare, and (iii) how technological, political, and institutional factors constrain policymakers and sometimes prevent good policies from being enacted.
Methodologically, the course introduces basic game theory. Game theory is the mathematical tool used to study situations of strategic interdependence, which is most of life. As such, it is a critical for understanding the substantive issues discussed above. In addition, understanding basic game theory is a valuable skill in its own right for policy professionals. It helps us predict and understand how people and organizations will behave in response to changes in the policy environment.
MIXED METHODS TO PUBLIC RESEARCH
This course will introduce students to a diverse range of mixed methods approaches to policy research and will provide them with a foundation in multiple disciplinary perspectives and methodological approaches. This course aims to help students become critical consumers of both qualitative and quantitative research; specifically, what types of questions best lend themselves to quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods studies.
The first part of the class will introduce the differences between the uses and methodological considerations of the different approaches. The bulk of the class will focus on examining the research design and evaluating case studies to teach and apply concepts and techniques.
MICROECONOMICS FOR HEALTH POLICY II
This course will explore why markets and policies might fail to be efficient and what policies and markets may be used to correct these inefficiencies. Using the competitive model developed in the first course as a point of departure, the course will examine how different market structures, the existence of externalities, and informational considerations alter the performance of the market. The course will also examine the welfare implications of using markets to allocate resources.
Dissertation in Health Economics and Policy (Summer 2021)
The DISSERTATION could be on any topic in the field of health policy and economics. It should attempt to integrate approaches and knowledge learned across courses and present results to address a health policy, economic issue or a problem identified through the use of either primary or secondary data. It must demonstrate adequate knowledge of relevant theoretical and empirical literature in the field. In addition, careful analysis of the policy implications and formulation of policy recommendations is essential. The main body of the dissertation should, in principle, include the background to the research, method of investigation, results of the analysis, discussion and policy implications and recommendations. (Professor Elias Mossialos)