PUB HLTH 4081 - Health Economics

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2016

Health economics is the study of how scarce healthcare resources are allocated among competing interventions and among groups in society. This course introduces basic concepts and practical issues faced by decision makers at all levels in the health system in allocating scarce resources so that the choices they make maximise health benefits to the population. This course has four main learning modules each comprising a set of lectures: (1) An introduction to key concepts of health economics (e.g. opportunity costs) and how better choices in resource allocation might be made. There will be an introduction to the demand for and supply of health services, fundamentals of markets and the price mechanism with a focus on the healthcare market; (2) An introduction to economic evaluation in healthcare, with an emphasis on identifying, measuring, valuing and analysing health outcomes and costs. This module also discusses how economic evaluation can be used to allocate limited health care resources;(3) Equity: this module includes a reflection on equity in health care and the relationship between equity and economic evaluation (measuring efficiency) in priority setting;(4) An overview of the organisation of health care (provision and funding). The organisation and finance of the Australian health system will be specifically analysed and compared internationally.

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