Health Policy and Financing (HP&F)

Progress towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC) requires equitable and effective health policies and financial arrangements. But how do these policies come about? And how can health financing work to improve public health? This course takes a critical perspective at current debates in health policy and financing with a specific focus on Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs), rooted in a commitment to UHC.

This course is tropEd accredited  and is intended for public health professionals looking to elevate their capabilities in healthcare financing. It can be followed as a stand-alone course or as part of the Master in International Health or Master in Public Health programmes.

Start
13/05/2024
Duration
3 weeks
Location
KIT, Amsterdam
EC
4
Language
English
Course period 2024
13/05/2024 until 31/05/2024
Course fee 2024
EUR 2.240
Early bird and other Discounts
Learn more about our discounts
Academic application deadline (course 2024)
20/03/2024
Contact
courses@kit.nl

From the course Health Policy and Financing I learned how to organize and manage a program in Nepal called Microfinance and Microhealth insurance or so called community based health insurance . The main objective of this program is of increasing financial accessibility. This is obtained by increasing income through skill based training. But also by creating awareness regarding common female and reproductive health problems and diseases and taking health as an asset and value and care for it. The program has been undertaken in five different Outreach Centres of Dhulikhel Hosptial located in different rural areas of Nepal: Salambu, Bahunepati, Dapcha, Baluwa, and Kattike Deurali.  Until now the programme has a total of 28 groups of which six groups have completed their loan cycle. The total no. of beneficiaries are 300. Besides accessing credit, the women are given different kinds of skill-based trainings and awareness sessions on different health issues through this programme. Similarly, the Microhealth Insurance Program has targeted improvement of health of mother and children. My training at KIT has provided me the knowledge to further strengthen these programs and serve the needy people at their doorstep.

Akina Shrestha from Nepal, followed the Health Policy and Financing course as part of the MPH/ICHD. Now working as public health manager in Dhulikhel Hospital-Kathmandu University Hospital.

“Money makes the world go ‘round”. Money alone does not ensure a functioning health system; policy is an equally important pillar of public health. This module gave me a deeper understanding of the complexities of health policy and financing. Of course the students studied and debated the issues that low- and middle-income countries face, but there was also room to look at opportunities, good-practices and out-of-the-box approaches to health policy and financing.

Awareness of health policy and financing is also relevant for those working ‘in the field’, as a midwife I found that after taking this module I could better understand and/or criticize policy or financing decisions being made by those in higher levels.”

Patricia Titulaer-van Ham, Midwife from the Netherlands. She followed the Health Policy and Financing course as part of the  MIH.

“I was really surprised to learn that health is not operating on its own. There is a strong relationship between health and other ‘challenges’ in the world like education, sanitation, live style, environment, water, economics etc. There are different approaches and there is not such as a ‘one fits all solution’. Therefore it is so important that for example NGO’s, Agencies and Government are work together.”

Fried Lammerink from the Netherlands, followed the HRH course as part of the MPH/ICHD. Educational background: Nursing & Management.  Worked as Policy Advisor Government of Lesotho and will start to work as organisational development advisor in Cambodia.

”‘Health policy and financing module deeply taught me how I critically could analyse the currd on available evidences through writing a policy brief. Furthermore, the module was very helpful to understand different methods of financing of the health systems.”

Amirhoushang Omidvari from Iran, MPH/ICHD 2013, background Medical Doctor, now working as a Clinical Research Training Fellow in Global Health at School of Public Health, Imperial College London.

“In our time, organizations and technology are evolving so rapidly that health care professionals must continually seek new skills and perspectives that enable them not only to respond to change, but also to anticipate it. And this is exactly what we were trained in KIT. Besides these academic competencies that are making a lot of difference in what I do now, staying and studying in Amsterdam also had positive effects in many ways; the principles of “equal opportunity for all people, irrespective of gender, age, race or religion” were visible in all aspects of the Dutch life.”

John Kingsley Krugu from Ghana, MPH/ICHD 2010, background in biological sciences, now PHD Research Fellow at Maastricht University.

“I work as a deputy manager in the Federal Ministry of Health within the department for emergency and humanitarian action. We cover natural disasters and conflict-affected areas, which, sadly, are numerous. By designing and implementing capacity building programmes, and working together with health partners and international donors, we try to improve our public health sector at regional levels. I came to KIT because I wanted to add more knowledge to my experience. I hope that my master’s degree from KIT will help me to influence decision-makers in Sudan.”

Shaza Sidahmed from Sudan, MPH/ICHD 2012, background medical doctor. Working for Federal Ministry of Health.

“The MPH study program was comprehensive and mixed of theories, practices, skills, tools to apply the knowledge, and real examples from developing countries. Program topics were all interesting and relevant to practical work in the field. With what I learned I can contribute to strengthening the policy and strategies relevant to health in Afghanistan.”

Khalid Sharifi from Afghanistan, MPH/ICHD 2010, background medical doctor, now working as Managing Director of Afghan NGO, Social and Health Development Program (SHDP).

Content

The course aims to offer participants a better understanding of health systems governance and policy processes, including the role of aid, economic interests and communities at global, central and local levels; health pooling and purchasing arrangements, including health insurance; benefit packages and the involvement of private providers. Participants will be equipped with the skills to write a policy brief on health financing options for UHC in low- and middle-income contexts as a final assignment.

As part of this course, students are required to critically read and discuss papers on specific health policy debates in low and middle income countries. Examples of such policy debates include:

  • feasibility of national insurance systems
  • the role of private sector and contracting arrangements and
  • the relationship between decentralisation and equity
  • Content

  • Health systems governance and policy processes, including the role of aid
  • Economic interests and communities at global, central and local levels
  • Health pooling and purchasing arrangements, including health insurance
  • Benefit packages, contracting and the involvement of private providers
  • Objectives

    At the end of the module the participants should be able to:

  • Discuss and apply a framework for policy analysis, considering effectiveness, equity and implementation challenges
  • Appraise the role of external aid and donors in health financing in LMICs
  • Analyse the key dynamics in health systems governance in LMICs at different levels, including stakeholder interests, trade-offs and context specificity
  • Understand the advantages and disadvantages, drawbacks and limitations of tax-financed and social health insurance models of health financing
  • Analyse comparative advantages and disadvantages of public and private roles and relationships, including contracting, across functions and institutions within the health system
  • Evaluate the contribution of different resource mobilisation, pooling and purchasing arrangements to UHC
  • Application

    Admission criteria

  • Academic training or professional qualification in a relevant area
  • Work experience in a related area, including experience in management or planning in developing countries
  • Proficiency in spoken and written English
  • Application procedure

    The application package is due two months before the start of the course.

    Please upload your application online. The following documents should be uploaded:

  • A one-page letter of motivation
  • Copies of your diplomas and grade reports
  • An up-to-date curriculum vitae and a list of publications if applicable
  • What we expect from your motivation letter:
    Please indicate in your motivation letter why you want to follow this specific course, why you want to follow the course at KIT Amsterdam, what do you expect to learn and how you will apply your newly gained competencies from the course in your work, what kind of benefits will it bring to your future career, etc. Describe a relevant problem you have experienced in the last two years that you would like to discuss during this specific course. Your motivation should be about ½-1 page. Please do not repeat your CV again.

    This course can be taken on its own, as advanced module of the Master of Public Health (MPH) or as part of the Master in International Health (MIH) programme.

    FAQ Online Application System

    Do you have a question about our Online Application System? Then you can find the answer in our FAQ Online Application System:

    Go to our FAQ Online Application System-page 

    Discounts and Fees

    We offer a range of discounts for early bird applicants, alumni, tropEd students and groups. See below the discounts and fees for Health Policy and Financing (HP&F) course. See for more information about our discounts for groups and other short courses on our exclusive discount page.

    Regular course fee€2.240,-Start date: 31-5-2024
    Early bird fee€1.904,-Paid before: 13-2-2024
    Alumni discount€1.792,-
    tropEd fee€1.904,-

    Practical information

    Location

    Face-to-face classes at KIT’s training facilities in Amsterdam.

    Accommodation

    There is a severe shortage of student accommodation in Amsterdam and participants are advised to contact KIT for information. KIT will endeavour to assist participants in their search for housing.

    Visa requirements

    Citizens of most EU or European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries do not need a visa to enter the Netherlands. Visit the Nuffic website for the latest information on visa requirements.

    Participants from other countries must obtain a short-stay visa (for up to three months) through the Netherlands embassy or consulate covering the applicant’s country. Applicants will need a letter of admission to the course and proof of sponsorship or sufficient funds to cover the course fee, travel and accommodation costs. Applicants should take into account that in some countries this procedure can take several months.

    Insurance requirements

    Course participants and accompanying dependents are required by Dutch law to have health, accident and third-party insurance. Unless their current insurance policy covers their stay abroad, participants must insure themselves and their dependents in the Netherlands. Dutch insurance companies offer reasonable rates to foreign students.

    Funding

    The arrangement of financial support to cover all study costs is the responsibility of the applicant. KIT does not offer financial support or scholarships.

    Orange Knowledge Programme (OKP)

    Unfortunately the OKP programme has ended. For 2024 there are no scholarship rounds. 
    Read more on the OKP page.

    European Credits

    The European Credit Transfer System (EC) facilitates the transfer of course credits between different institutions of the same academic level. A study load comprising 28 hours of formal teaching and private study is equivalent to one EC credit point.

    Accreditation

    This course is also accredited for the Master in International Health programme organised by TropEd, a network of European institutions for higher education in international health.

    Apply online

    Apply online

    You can find all information about our online application system on this page 

    Apply online now

    Why study at KIT?

    • Up-to-date approach to complex public health issues

    • Practice-oriented

    • Exchange between disciplines

    • Interactive Education

    • Development of personal and professional competencies

    • Network building

    • Participants from diverse backgrounds and countries

    • Personal tutoring

    • Teaching by highly qualified specialists

    • Positively reviewed by tropEd

    • KIT: international centre of excellence in international health and development

    • Accredited by NVAO

    Coordinators & Support

    Photo of Rinia Sahebdin

    Rinia Sahebdin

    Course Administration Officer

    Read more