PUBLIC HEALTH ECONOMICS
2015/2016, Semester 2
Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health (Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health)
Modular Credits: 4
This course will discuss key concepts that economists use to analyze the production and consumption of health and health care and apply these concepts to selected issues in health policy. We will first cover the microeconomic fundamentals that drive patient choices, provider and behavior, health insurance and medical innovation. The second part of the semester will shift to a macroeconomic perspective on systems and policy, and the third will conclude with a discussion the economic evaluation of health technologies and public health interventions.
The goal of this class is to enrich your understanding and provide you with new perspectives on health and healthcare given the economic way of thinking (not to make you a health economist). The course is designed to provide a topical overview accessible to all, including non-majors.
The final syllabus and course content may be further adjusted based on the composition of the class after our first meeting.
This class aims to enrich your understanding and provide you with new perspectives on health and healthcare from an economics perspective. The course is designed to provide a topical overview accessible to all, including non-majors.
At the end of this course, you should be able to
Apply basic economic models and concepts to different aspects of health and health care, and relate these to current affairs.
Use economic reasoning to evaluate the strengths and limitations of interventions and policies affecting individual choices about health as well as markets for health care and health insurance.
This course has no prerequisites other than basic familiarity with statistics and mathematical reasoning, common sense and a willingness to participate. A background in economics is welcome but not presupposed. Advanced students of economics with existing subject knowledge will be provided with additional optional background readings, and are encouraged to ask tough questions at all times.
This course will be structured as a single weekly seminar from 2-5 pm on Tuesday afternoons. Class activities and discussion will be graded. Guest speakers will be featured via web-conference or in person. From Week 10 onwards, classes will start with quizzes followed by a 45-min lecture and a group discussion based on two open-ended questions. In compliance with e-Learning Week, the lecture on 15 Mar 2016 will be replaced with online learning materials.
This module is 100% CA.
Group assigments (2)
Individual assignments (2)
Individual assignments (3)
Assignment 1 - Conducted as part of E-learning week, and will take the form of a reflection piece to be uploaded to IVLE after watching a documentary uploaded on IVLE (Worbin: Week 9 materials). Due on 17 Mar 16, 5pm.
Assignment 2 - A 48-hour assignment based on Week 13's topic "Critical Appraisal of Published Economic Evaluation". Due on 14 Apr 16, 5pm.
Assignment 3 - A set of 4 weekly quizzes from Week 10 to Week 13. There will be 5 MCQs per week based on readings given for that week. 15 minutes will be given to complete each set of quiz in class.
The group assignment will be based on two questions set for the 1.5-hour group discussion at the end of each seminar from 22 Mar 2016 (Week 10) onwards. Each group is strongly encouraged to bring at least one laptop to the class as all assignments are to be uploaded to IVLE by 5pm on the same day.
Module: SPH3103 Public Health Economics
Tahir Foundation Building (MD1), Level 9, Tutorial Room 1 and Tutorial Room 2 (
Assistant Professor Wee Hwee Lin
Phone: (65) 6516-5530
Associate Professor Joanne Yoong
Phone: (65) 6516-6930
Png May Ee
(Please contact the teaching assistant if you would like to find out more about this module or if you have any administrative queries regarding this module.)
The table below summarizes the syllabus for the course. Please note that the lectures and content may be altered based on the interest groups and level of the class as we progress during the semester.
12 Jan 16
Welcome and Introduction
19 Jan 16
Demand and Disparities in Health and Healthcare: Patients and Consumers
Bhattacharya Ch2, 23, 24
26 Jan 16
Supply of healthcare: Providers, Hospitals and the Healthcare Marketplace
Bhattacharya Ch5, 6
2 Feb 16
Information Economics: Incentives and Insurance
Bhattacharya Ch7, 10, 11
9 Feb 16
Chinese New Year
16 Feb 16
In-Class Midterm Test*
1 Mar 16
Health Policy in Asia Pacific
Guest speaker: Dr. Jeremy Lim, Oliver Wyman
8 Mar 16
Healthcare Systems around the World
15 Mar 16
Reflection Piece on "The Price of Life"
Individual Assignment #1
22 Mar 16
Economics of Innovation : Pharmaceutical Companies and Drug Development
Rattinger GB, 2008
Mulcahy AW, 2014
Group Assignment #1
29 Mar 16
Economic Evaluation in Healthcare
Kobelt G, 2013
Group Assignment #2
5 Apr 16
Dealing with Uncertainty in Economic Evaluation in Healthcare
Fenwick E, 2005
Group Assignment #3
12 Apr 16
Critical Appraisal of Published Economic Evaluation
U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2014
Husereau D, 2013
Group Assignment #4
Individual Assignment #2
*Location of Midterm Test will be at MD1, Level 8, Computer Lab 1
: Joanne Yoong,
: Wee Hwee Lin,
TEXTBOOK AND READINGS
The class will rely mainly on lecture notes and articles.
Lecture notes will not be provided ahead of time but please read the articles uploaded on IVLE before class
The main reference textbook is
Jay Bhattacharya, Timothy Hyde & Peter Tu, (2013).
. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 9781137029966
students are not required to purchase the main reference textbook
as relevant chapters from the book will be made available to students before the lecture on IVLE.
Weekly readings for each topic will be provided via IVLE.