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Here’s the official blurb we’ve prepared to advertise recruitment to our MSc Programme in Health Economics and Decision Science. And yes: we can also do a gym session, if you like. And yes: you can wear army pants… What more would you want?
UCL’s MSc in Health Economics and Decision Science took in its first cohort of students in the 2017-18 academic year and has grown in popularity since then as it fills a gap in training and skills-transfer in higher education.
It spans the disciplines of economics, and statistics applied to health and health care, and embraces the multi-disciplinary nature of Health Economics and Decision Science. The MSc is offered in a modular format where students may “mix and match” modules that permit bespoke degrees within the overall constraints of UCL’s quality assurance process for taught degrees; this also allows students who are curious about interdisciplinary or related areas to take additional modules of interest or relevance.
Students reading for this MSc are offered an extensive range of modules in health systems, microeconomic theory, econometrics, economic evaluation, biostatistics, modelling for decision science, health management, urban health. These are taught by leading academics in the fields of economics, statistics, epidemiology, health management, philosophy, geography, public health and health policy, to ensure that students develop a deep understanding of fundamental theory and their applications for research and policy. The course directors also liasie with a range of potential employers to create internship opportunities where students can experience the working environment in their field and develop important professional networks. The MSc enables students to broaden their knowledge key factors that strengthen health systems and capacity, specifically the efficiency, effectiveness, value and behaviour in the production and consumption of health care in their own countries and globally.
In addition to building a knowledge base, students also lead an independent piece of research for their dissertation project that can take the form of a literature review or a study involving data analysis. This experience encourages students to critically reflect on crucial questions around the efficiency, and effectiveness, as well as value and behaviour in the production and consumption of health care. Through this experience, students develop skills in critical thinking and analyses as well as in project management. This contributes to the students’ abilities to improve health care outcomes and health equity in their home countries or elsewhere.
Student destinations are in government, particularly Ministries of Health and/or Welfare; international agencies such as the WHO, UNICEF, World Bank, and Overseas Development Institute; leading academic institutions (examples of where our students have ended up working, in the UK include UCL, LSE, King’s College London and the Royal College of Physicians); consultancies or think tanks such as the Office of Health Economics, Evidera, Frontier Economics, where they can use the knowledge and skills from the MSc to generate evidence and policies to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and equity of health systems at a time where there is important push for universal health coverage.