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This programme aims to develop critical analysis of issues within health policy, planning and financing and to enable students to devise appropriate health policy responses. Students come from a wide range of backgrounds. This is a joint programme provided by the School and the London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE). The course provides training relevant to countries at all levels of development, although participants are able to specialise.
Graduates enter careers in global health and national health policy and planning, research, advisory or advocacy roles in governments and international agencies. Find out more about our graduate careers and destinations.
Duration: one year year full-time or half-time over two years. Ways to study explained.
"One of the most exciting things has been putting knowledge into practice. By using the knowledge we learn, students are able to propose national reforms, to change national health policies and to evaluate health interventions."
By the end of this programme students should be able to:
- demonstrate knowledge and understanding of a diverse range of global and national health policies, including current and emerging trends and also of disciplines relevant to the study of health policy, planning and financing (epidemiology, health economics and other social sciences)
- apply their knowledge and skills using a multidisciplinary approach to formulate, implement and evaluate health policies and plans
- demonstrate written and verbal competence in communicating empirical evidence and in consolidating and critically appraising debates relevant to issues of health policy and health financing
- demonstrate competence in key research and presentation skills, such as undertaking a literature search, a critical review of published literature or to evaluate research findings
All students take one compulsory module from each institution:
- Financing Health Care (LSE)
- Health Services or Health Policy, Process and Power (LSHTM)
Students must also take one additional Term 1 module from each institution from the following:
- Health Economics
- Pharmaceutical Economics and Policy
- Introduction to Health Policy and Politics (formerly Foundations of Health Policy)
- Basic Epidemiology
- Issues in Public Health
- Health Policy, Process and Power
- Health Services
Term 2 and 3
Students take three modules from LSE and LSHTM including (but not restricted to) the following subject to availability:
- Statistical Methods in Health Care Economic Evaluation
- Advanced Health Economics
- Measuring Health System Performance
- Health Systems and Policies in Developing Countries
- Evidence Review and Synthesis for Decision Making
- Social Determinants of Health
- Global Health Policy: Institutions, Actors and Politics
- Economic Analysis for Health Policy in Low and Middle Income Countries
- Randomised Evaluations for Health Programmes: From Design to Implementation
- Behavioural Incentives Design in Health and Health Care
- Designing Disease Control Programmes in Developing Countries
- Economic Evaluation
- Epidemiology and Control of Malaria
- Health Care Evaluation
- Sociological Approaches to Health
- Study Design: Writing a Study Proposal
- Conflict and Health
- Design & Analysis of Epidemiological Studies
- Family Planning Programmes
- Health Systems
- History & Health
- Population, Poverty and Environment
- Qualitative Methodology
- Applied Communicable Disease Control
- Control of Sexual Transmitted Diseases
- Current Issues in Maternal & Perinatal Health
- Economic Analysis for Health Policy
- Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases
- Evaluation of Public Health Interventions
- Medical Anthropology and Public Health
- Nutrition in Emergencies
- Organisational Management
- Tropical Environmental Health
- Analytical Models for Decision Making
- Environmental Epidemiology
- Epidemiology and Control of Communicable Diseases
- Ethics, Public Health and Human Rights
- Globalisation & Health
- Reviewing the Literature
- Sexual Health
- Analysing Survey and Population Data
- Environmental Health Policy
- Health Services Management
- Principal & Practice of Public Health
- Proposal Development
In all cases, each student's full set of module choices must be approved by the Programme Directors at LSE and the School in order to confirm that students' choices fit with their stated career aims and form a coherent set of modules for the MSc. Students must also meet the entrance requirements for each particular module. Guidance will be provided in the course handbook, to outline the key differences between recommended modules and provide comments where relevant on optional modules - to help both students and tutors differentiate between and make module choices most appropriately.
As the last major component of the programme, students undertake a research project on a relevant topic – assessed through a written dissertation. The project should be an independent piece of work, appropriately guided and supported by a supervisor and other relevant staff. Substantive work, including any travel or fieldwork, should start after the exams in the summer.
Changes to the course
The School will seek to deliver this course in accordance with the description set out in this course page. However, there may be situations in which it is desirable or necessary for the School to make changes in course provision, either before or after registration. For further information, please see our page on changes to courses.
A student must normally satisfy the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine general entrance requirements and the additional programme specific entrance requirements as follows:
The normal minimum entrance qualification for registration at the School on a Master's programme is at least one of the following:
- a second-class honours degree of a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, in a subject appropriate to that of the course of study to be followed
- a registrable qualification appropriate to the course of study to be followed, in medicine, dentistry or veterinary studies
Applications with an appropriate technical qualification, or equivalent qualification and experience from overseas, are also welcomed.
Additionally for the MSc Health Policy, Planning & Financing, applicants should ideally have prior work experience in areas relating to health, policy, planning and financing. Preference will be given to such candidates given the competitive nature of this course. A minimum of one year’s experience in health policy or public health related work is recommended.
Any prospective student who does not meet the above minimum entry requirement, but who has relevant professional experience, may still be eligible for admission. Please contact the course directors if you are not sure whether this is the right course for you.
English Language Requirements
If English is not your first language, you will need to meet these requirements: Band B
Please see our English Language Requirements FAQs for information
You will need the equivalent of a bachelor's degree to undertake an MSc. This will usually require you to have a BSc degree or have completed the first three years of your medical degree. More information on intercalating an MSc at the School.
Graduates from this joint programme provided by the School and the London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) enter a diverse range of positions in global health and national health policy and planning, research, advisory or advocacy roles in governments and international agencies.
Below you will find just a few of the positions and organisations that our graduates from this course have entered:
- Example job titles:
Advocacy officer for a medical NGO
Health Policy Consultant
Health Research and Policy Officer
Planning and Evaluation Economist
Policy and Public Affairs manager
Specialist Registrar (Infectious and Respiratory Diseases)
Teaching Fellow in Global Health
- Example organisations:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
LSE (The London School of Economics and Political Science)
McKinsey & Company
Medecins Sans Frontieres
Ministère de la Santé Française (French Ministry of Health)
Ministry of Health
Ministry of Labour and Social Policy
Overseas Development Institute
Royal College of Physicians
Save the Children
World Health Organisation
HealthTech Women UK
"I am a health policy researcher working to strengthen health systems in the Philippines and Southeast Asia. This programme’s unique structure provides a broad perspective on health policies, as well as academic resources from two premiere institutions. I am confident that with this MSc, I now have the toolkit that will allow me to contribute to health system reforms in my home country."
Hear from Lizna, MSc Health Policy, Planning & Financing student
Lizna shares her experience of studying the MSc Health Policy, Planning & Financing at LSHTM.
All applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible to ensure availability of a place and a timely decision on their application. This is particularly important for applicants with sponsorship deadlines.
The final closing date for taught Master’s applications is as follows:
- 2 August 2019 by 23:59 British Summer Time (BST) for international applicants requiring a Tier 4 Student Visa, and
- 23 August 2019 by 23:59 British Summer Time (BST) for applicants not requiring a Tier 4 Student Visa.
Do you need a visa?
If you have EU nationality or you are from Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, you do not need immigration permission to come to the UK. You can enter, study and work in the UK without restriction. If you have dual nationality, and you choose to come to the UK using your EEA or Swiss passport, you do not need immigration permission.
For useful guidance on EEA nationals in the UK, go to the UKCISA website.
Students from outside the EEA
All non-EEA nationals who want to study in the UK must hold immigration permission that allows you to study in the UK.
If you are coming to the School to study on a full time degree programme and you have no other immigration permission for the UK, you will need to apply for a Tier 4 Student visa. You can only apply for Tier 4 when your offer at the School is unconditional.
If you already hold a Tier 4 visa for a different institution, you will probably have to apply for a Tier 4 visa for the School before you can start studying with us.