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Course Catalog


Department: International Health
Term: 3rd term
Credits: 3 credits
Contact: Sara Bennett
Academic Year: 2013 - 2014
Course Instructor:

Provides an overview of political frameworks and theories related to policy development and offers practical perspectives on their application to health policy in low and middle income countries (LMICs). Analyzes the political economy of health policy, (ie. how the political environment and country institutions policy development). Introduces the main actors, processes and contextual features that are typical of policy development and implementation in LMICs. Topics encompass national policy and planning frameworks; aid harmonization and alignment; the role of policy networks (particularly civil society actors); policy implementers and their role in shaping policy; and mechanisms for global health policy development. Final sessions focus on practical strategies to strengthen policy processes. Teaching draws upon examples from different diseases, services and health systems.

Learning Objective(s):

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to: (1) understand the key features of various frameworks and models for understanding the political economy of health policy; (2) identify, describe and analyze common processes and actors involved in health policy development with a particular focus on low and middle income countries; (3) appreciate the need for national policy leadership in the health sector, and when working in low and middle income countries, act in ways that respect national processes; (4) understand and help develop and implement strategies to promote succesful policy development and implementation for a range of different policy issues; and (5) have a basic knowledge of how to write a policy brief.

Methods of Assessment: Attendance and participation in group discussions (20%); completion of policy case study essay (40%); completion of policy brief (40)%
Location: East Baltimore
Class Times:
  • Monday 9:00 - 10:20
  • Wednesday 9:00 - 10:20
Enrollment Minimum: 10
Enrollment Restriction: no undergraduates
Instructor Consent: No consent required

220.601 Intro to International Health

Auditors Allowed: Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction: Letter Grade or Pass/Fail