Health economics at the LSHTM
LSHTM is ranked in the top three institutions for health economics research in the UK, according to a recent study by the World Bank. The School has a long tradition in health economics, dating all the way back to the establishment of the University. As recommended by the Ministry of Health in 1921, "An institute of state medicine should be established by the University of London in which instruction should be given in public health, forensic medicine, industrial medicine and in medical ethics and economics".
Health economists at LSHTM work within the Health Economics and Systems Analysis Group of the Department of Global Health & Development, the Department of Health Services Research & Policy, and the Department of Social & Environmental Health Research.They collaborate on research and teaching across the School. Their research interests encompass countries at all levels of development, and research is conducted in collaboration with many external partners.
Health Economics courses are an integral part of the teaching at LSHTM; see staff and students in PHP discuss health economics at LSHTM and the benefits of studying this key subject. Professor Anne Mills is President of the International Health Economics Association (iHEA) for 2012-3. Here she discusses her priorities in the role, including an increased focus on serving the needs of health economists in low and middle income countries, and looks ahead to the 9th World Congress on Health Economics in Sydney in July 2013.
9th World Congress on Health Economics, Sydney, Australia, 7-10 July 2013
The main areas of health economics research in the Faculty are:
- Economic evaluation methods (Cairns, Grieve)
- Impact evaluation methods (Acharya, Hanson, Powell-Jackson)
- Stated preference methods (Cairns, Borghi, Hanson, Lagarde, Mangham, Terris-Prestholt)
- Economic evaluation in specific areas:
- Cancer (Cairns, Miners)
- HIV, STIs, TB (Guinness, Miners, Terris-Prestholt, Vassall)
- Interrupting disease vectors of salmonella, E. Coli and MRSA (Roberts, Santos)
- Child and maternal health (Borghi, Hanson, Pitt)
- Chronic diseases (Acharya, Griffiths)
- Malaria (Goodman, Hansen, Hanson, Mangham, Mills, Pitt, Wiseman, Yeung)
- Primary and secondary prevention (Legood, Santos, Terris-Prestholt)
- Surgical procedures and interventions in adult and paediatric intensive care (Grieve, Sadique)
- Vaccines and related issues (Legood, Griffiths, Terris-Prestholt)
- Decision analysis (Dowie, Chalabi)
- Financing health care in low and middle income countries (Gilson, Goodman, Hansen, Hanson, Lagarde, Mills, Palmer, Powell-Jackson, Vassall)
- Equity and inequalities (Gilson)
- Regulatory economics including contracts (Allen, Goodman, Guinness, Hanson, Palmer, Mills)
- Private sector providers (Goodman, Hanson, Mills)
- Human resources (Gilson, Lagarde, Palmer)
- Household behaviour (Gilson, Powell-Jackson, Santos, Vyas)
- Macroeconomics and health (Smith, Keogh-Brown, Wiseman)
- Globalisation and health-related trade (Martinez-Alvarez, Smith)
- Agri-health economics (Cornelsen, Smith)
Further information on major research projects is available as follows:
We have a flourishing research degree programme in health economics, with around 20 students. Students normally spend the first year developing their research topic, undertaking relevant literature reviews, strengthening specific skills needed for their research, and following a transferable skills training programme. The second year is normally spent collecting and/or analysing data, and the third year completing analyses and writing up.
Examples of current and recently completed research topics include:
- An investigation of alternative statistical methods for cost-effectiveness analyses that use Cluster Randomised Trials
- Economic evaluation of the Maimwana project: a community-based randomised controlled trial to reduce neonatal and maternal mortality and mother-to-child transmission of HIV
- Economic evaluation of a community-based intervention: measuring the value to society
- Variations in performance of three public insurance schemes in Thailand
- Hospital autonomisation in Bogota, Colombia: a transactions cost economic analysis
- Economic analysis of the retail supply chain for malaria treatment in Cambodia
- The role of professional education and training in workforce migration
- The impact of medical tourism on the Thai health system
- Global Health Diplomacy: a meta narrative of the role of the World Health Organisation in the global governance of non-communicable disease and trade
The Faculty’s London-based Masters programme includes four health economics related modules which can be selected by students on any of the Faculty’s Masters Degree programmes, as well as by students on some Masters programmes run by the two other faculties. In addition, the MSc Public Health (Health Economics) enables students to follow a stream specifically designed to provide a foundation for the understanding of health economics as applied in health services research. The stream is aimed at anyone – with or without previous training in economics – who is interested in working as a health economist in an academic or professional capacity across high, middle and low income countries.
A Distance-Learning Masters in Public Health is also available, offering a compulsory core module in health economics and choice of two elective modules.
Subject to having the necessary academic background, London based and distance learning modules can be taken as free standing short courses. For further information see the prospectus.
We have an excellent track record of supporting fellowship applications, at PhD, post doctoral and career development levels. Contact us if you are interested in developing an application for a fellowship that would be based in the Faculty.
Smith R and Coast J. The economic burden of antimicrobial resistance: Why it is more serious than current studies suggest. London: LSTHM, Oct 2012.
Health Policy and Planning Special Issue. Research to support universal coverage reforms in Africa: the SHIELD project. Guest editors: Di McIntyre and Anne Mills. Volume 27 suppl 1, March 2012 (all papers are open access)
Blaauw D, Erasmus E, Pagaiya N, Tangcharoensathien V, Mullei, K, Mudhune S, Goodman C, English M and Lagarde M. Policy interventions that attract nurses to rural areas: a multicountry discrete choice experiment. WHO Bulletin, 88: 321-400, 2010.
Gingrich C, Hanson K, Marchant T, Mulligan J, Mponda H. Price subsidies and the market for mosquito nets in developing countries: A study of Tanzania’s discount voucher scheme. Social Science and Medicine, 73(1): 160-168, 2011.
Goodman C, Kachur P, Abdulla S, Bloland P and Mills A. Concentration, contestability and drug prices in the retail market for malaria treatment in rural Tanzania. Health Economics, 18(6): 727-742, 2009.
Hanson K and Jack W. Health worker preferences for job attributes in Ethiopia: Results from a discrete choice experiment. Health Affairs, 29: 1452-1460, 2010.
Keogh-Brown MR, Smith RD, Edmunds JW and Beutels P. The macroeconomic impact of pandemic influenza: estimates from models of the UK, France, Belgium and the Netherlands. The European Journal of Health Economics 11(6): 543-554, 2010.
Kiiskinen U, Suominen-Taipale L, Cairns J. Think twice before you book? Modelling the choice of public vs. private dentist in a choice experiment. Health Economics, 19(6):670-82, 2010
Lagarde M. How to do (or not to do) … Assessing the impact of a policy change with routine longitudinal data. Health Policy and Planning, 1-8, 2011 (published online January 2011).
Lock K, Smith RD, Dangour A, Keogh-Brown M, Pigatto G, Hawkes C, Fisjberg R, Chalabi Z. Health, Agricultural and Economic Effects of Adopting Healthy Diet Recommendations. The Lancet, 376: 1699-1709, 2010.
McKenna C, Chalabi Z, Epstein D, Claxton K. Budgetary policies and available actions: a generalisation of decision rules for allocation and research decisions. Journal of Health Economics 29(1): 170-181, 2010.
Sekhon JS and Grieve RD. A matching method for improving covariate balance in cost-effectiveness analyses. Health Economics, 2011 (published online June 2011).
Smith RD and Hanson K (eds). Health systems in low- and middle-income countries: an economic and policy perspective. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011. http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199566761.do
Smith RD, Keogh-Brown M, Barnett A. Estimating the economic impact of pandemic influenza: an application of the computable general equilibrium model to the UK. Social Science and Medicine, 73: 235-244, 2011.
Tangcharoensathien V, Patcharanarumol W, Ir P, Aljunid S, Ghufron Mukti A, Akkhavong K, Banzon E, Boi Huong D, Thabrany H and Mills A. Health Financing Reforms in South East Asia: challenges in achieving universal coverage. Lancet 377 (9768): 863-873, 2011.