Master of Public Health in Health Economics

PRICELESS SA is the leading Southern African institution for formal, degreed, postgraduate teaching and mentoring in health economics and decision science.
Master of Public Health in Health Economics

Our Master of Public Health in Health Economics, established in 2018, will produce health economists equipped to support health policy decision-making in South Africa and the region.

Graduates will be highly skilled to:

  • design and conduct health economic evaluations tailored for sub-Saharan Africa
  • apply economic approaches to informing policy decisions on the efficient allocation of scarce resources
  • provide technical advice to policymakers on using economic policy levers to modify health behaviours.

The three-year, part-time programme is jointly coordinated with the Centre for Health Policy in the Wits School of Public Health. Core courses in public health are compulsory for all Master of Public Health students. Students then specialise in their chosen stream.

Read more about the Master in Public Health

Courses for the Health Economics stream

Introduction to Health Economics

Introduction to Health Economics explores the insights that an economic perspective can bring to planning and implementing health services and health systems. The first half of the course focuses on the application of classical and behavioural economic approaches to analysing individual health behaviour and the functioning of health markets. The second half covers the principles and common methods of economic evaluation, particularly cost-effectiveness analysis. Students also acquire basic skills in interpreting and critiquing cost-effectiveness studies.

Healthcare Financing

Healthcare Financing introduces financing concepts and their application. Students acquire an understanding of financing arrangements in terms of sources, collection, risk pooling, regulation and strategic purchasing. They engage with the experiences of a range of countries moving towards universal health coverage.

Economics of Health Care

Economics of Health Care covers the application of economic approaches to the analysis of health and healthcare delivery. Students learn how classical supply and demand curves have been used to analyse the production and consumption of health services, and about the insights these analyses provide for improving the organisation and delivery of health services. They are also introduced to recent behavioural economic approaches and their relevance for understanding healthcare demand and supply.

Economic Evaluation

Economic Evaluation covers advanced topics in cost-effectiveness and cost-utility analyses relating to identifying, measuring and valuing health outcomes measures and costs. Students learn the theoretical underpinnings and methods for doing an economic evaluation.

Decision Analysis for Economic Evaluation

Decision Analysis for Economic Evaluation teaches students to build decision analytical models, conduct appropriate sensitivity analyses, and apply these analyses to making decisions about introducing new health technologies.

Faculty is drawn from specialists in the Wits School of Health and visiting international experts.

International faculty 2019

  • Prof Simon Dixon, Health Economics and Decision Science, School of Health and Related Research, University of Sheffield
  • Prof Andrew Briggs, Chair in Health Economics, Institute of Health and Wellbeing, University of Glasgow

For more information from PRICELESS, please email our Research Director Dr Evelyn Thsehla. We welcome your enquires.

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