Economics and Finance for Health Policy (HPOL5001)


This unit aims to provide students with an understanding of the financial and economic aspects of health policy. It introduces the main concepts and analytical methods of health economics, political economy and finance. Learning objectives: - understand the main models and debates regarding health funding countries and the implications for equity, delivery and governance of health services. - apply this knowledge to current Australian and global health systems and debates over reform. - understand the role of economic analysis in evaluating health policy change - be familiar with theoretical frameworks underlying health economics and current debates over health finance. Content: This unit introduces the main concepts and analytical methods of health economics, political economy and finance to examine the workings of health systems in Australia and comparable countries. It looks at the main models of health system funding and their implications for the structure, planning and delivery of services. The first module focuses on the basic concepts and methodologies of health economics and political economy and their contribution to policy analysis. The second module places funding structures in a broader political and policy context. Topics include the debates over the public-private mix and governance and accountability - who makes decisions about funding priorities? To whom should decision makers be held accountable and for what aspects of their work? How does health finance shape broader policy reform?

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Further unit of study information


Block mode with compulsory Intensive workshops on Campus. 2 x two day workshops plus online discussion


Health Economics Exercise (50%), Health finance assignment (50%)


Buse K, Mays N, Walt G (2012). Making health policy. Second edition. Open University Press: London. Other required and recommended reading materials available from eLearning site.

Faculty/department permission required?


Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.