HEALTH CARE POLICY

The Health Care Policy specialization is designed for those who want to make a difference in health and healthcare delivery systems. You’ll get a firsthand understanding of how to analyze, implement, and evaluate responsive health policies at the local, state, and national levels. You’ll also be introduced to the political, economic and social factors affecting health care delivery to diverse populations, including the disadvantaged and vulnerable. These skills can be applied to government health care agencies, private and public hospitals, health advocacy groups, or insurance companies.

Students must complete one required course, PAF 9710, plus three additional courses from the list below (click on the individual class link for a full description):

PAF 9710 Health and Health Care [REQUIRED]
3 hours; 3 credits
Health care managers and policy makers seek to maximize the promise and minimize the problems associated with improving health and providing health services to all Americans. This involves understanding the determinants of population and individual health, the organizational structure and financing of the health care system, the public policy making process, and approaches to improved quality, performance and accountability.
Prerequisite: none
PAF 9180 Policy Analysis
3 hours; 3 credits
Overview of the use of analytic techniques in solving public sector problems and designing government programs. Topics include agenda setting, approaches to problem solving, the role of values in policy making and policy analysis, policy-relevant data collection and analysis, principles of benefit-cost analysis, techniques of policy analysis (e.g., queuing, simulations, formal modeling), strategies for policy adoption and implementation, and the politics of policy analysis.
Prerequisite: none
PAF 9715 Health Care Policy
3 hours; 3 credits
The purpose of this course is to: examine policy issues relevant to four overarching concerns within health care: health status; access to health care; health care quality; and health care costs; in so doing, provide an understanding of various methods used to analyze health care policy issues and options.
Prerequisite: PAF 9710
PAF 9720 Population Based Health Planning
3 hours; 3 credits
Explores the history, rationale, and practice of population-based health care planning. Major features and issues in the total cycle of planning and control. Framework of classical population-based planning models and practice viewed from the perspective of marketplace scenario. The course assumes knowledge of the structure of the American health care system.
Prerequisite: PAF 9710
PAF 9725 Health Program, Policy and Performance Evaluation
3 hours; 3 credits
This course applies generic skills in evaluation and performance measurement to the particular circumstances of health and medical care. Topics covered include defining the purpose of an evaluation; different organizational arrangements for evaluation; the specification of evaluation questions, selection of appropriate measures and data collection methods; analysis of evaluation data; and the maximization of the usefulness of evaluation findings. The course also addresses contemporary trends in health care quality measurement and improvement, and the role of performance measurements in creating a more accountable health care system.
Prerequisite: PAF 9710. Not open to students who complete PAF 9174
PAF 9174 Program Evaluation
Prerequisite: PAF 9170 and PAF 9172; not open to students who complete PAF 9725
PAF 9730 Comparative Health Systems
3 hours; 3 credits
Explores the salient features of health systems of several countries. In order to develop an ability to review and critique other systems, and to establish the relevance of the course, the U.S. system will be discussed first. The review of other systems will be done (1) by reviewing the systems descriptively and (2) by assessing how the systems comparatively address issues raised in the review of the U.S. system. Finally, the knowledge attained will be used to discuss possible future changes to the U.S. system. The course assumes a knowledge of the structure of the American health care system.
Prerequisite: PAF 9710
PAF 9735 Health Politics and Policymaking
3 hours, 3 credits
This course examines the evolution of the major governmental programs involved with health insurance and health care in the United States. The goal is an understanding of the political dynamics that lead to successes and failures in health policymaking, and the development of strategies that can be used by governmental and non-governmental actors to accomplish policy change.
Prerequisite: PAF 9710 or permission of instructor
PAF 9766 Health Care Costs and Financing
3 hours; 3 credits
Description and analysis of health care costs and financing. Key topics include the factors and forces driving health care costs; demand for, operation of and side-effects of health insurance; health care cost-containment techniques; payment for physicians, hospitals and other providers; interaction of health care with the rest of the economy.
Prerequisite or corequisite: PAF 9130, PAF 9710 or permission of instructor
PAF 9799 Selected Topics in Health Policy
3 hours; 3 credits
Topics in health policy will vary from offering to offering.
Prerequisite: Grad 8 status and PAF 9710