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Course Catalog

221.646.01 Health Systems in Low and Middle Income Countries

International Health
2nd term
3 credits
Academic Year:
2019 - 2020
East Baltimore
Class Times:
  • M W,  1:30 - 2:50pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Sara Bennett
Course Instructors:

220.601, Introduction to International Health, Highly Recommended


Explores health systems in low and middle income countries (LMICs), and examines approaches to improving the performance of health systems. Focuses on frameworks, tools, skills, and strategies to understand, influence, and evaluate health systems in LMICs. Identifies key institutions, functions, and performance issues for national and local health systems. By using frameworks and tools, students gain experience in systematically analyzing health systems and methods to plan, implement, and evaluate changes in health systems in a variety of settings, including countries in various levels of demographic, epidemiologic and economic transitions. Covers key controversies in health systems, including issues in monitoring health systems performance, the role of the public sector, dealing with unregulated private health markets, linking priority health programs and health systems, raising accountability in the health system, etc.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Describe health systems frameworks, strategies and tools to analyze and evaluate health systems and their reforms in LMICs
  2. Explain and assess key systems, functions and institutions: oversight (e.g. governance, policy, regulation, public information), health care organization, and health financing
  3. Explain the role of different factors that contribute to health systems performance and health reforms
  4. Debate health systems issues concerning the roles of communities, public sector, markets, and other key institutions
Methods of Assessment:

Participation – 10%
Quiz #1 - 15%
Quiz #2 – 15%
Problem statement for individual paper – 20%
Final individual paper – 40%
Participation grade will be based on
(i) attendance in class (5%) and
(ii) instructor’s assessment of student’s participation in class activities (5%)

Enrollment Restriction:

no undergraduates

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for some students

Consent Note:

No consent required for Health Systems MSPH and PhD students and IH DrPH students. Consent required for students not in the Health Systems program.

For consent, contact: