The course aim is to provide participants with the knowledge and skills to better understand the functioning of health systems and to analyse their performance in high-, middle-, and low-income settings..
The course will approach the study of health systems by introducing core building blocks of health care systems, their functions, and modes of operation as well as considering debates around the challenges facing health systems today. The implications of different types of systems for access, quality and equity in health services will be examined. Key questions addressed include:
-what are the boundaries and the goals of the health system? -what key components make up a health system? -how are health systems evolving in the context of epidemiological transitions, and trends in financing and service delivery? -how do we determine whether health systems work to achieve their goals?
Credit Rating - 15 SCOTCAT
Participants of the professional development courses will receive a certificate of attendance from the Institute.
However, participants wishing to gain an award may register for a post graduate certificate. The modules are then taken for credit on a part-time basis each year. A PG Cert requires 60 credits and a post graduate diploma requires 120 credits. If you do a dissertation in addition to the short courses, you will gain 180 credits.
If you register for an award, you can have up to 4 years for a PG Cert, 5 years for a PG Dip and 7 years for a MSc to complete in part-time mode.
“I was really happy to study International Health here and meet people from all over the world (…). In class and during the group work it was sometimes challenging but interesting to discuss issues with people from so many different backgrounds. Here with smaller classes, I had the feeling that people in the course felt at the same level, in a safe environment and thus were motivated to discuss openly, challenge and engage with the material without the fear of losing their ‘face’ or status.
I think the programmes here are ideal for people who have some practical experience in working in international health and want to gain knowledge on the global context, historical background, social, cultural and economic issues, policy and theories.. The modules allow you to take a step back from the practical issues in the field and provide you with the tools necessary to research and analyse matters related to international health.”
“I am a medical doctor. Before I came here I was working with an NGO focusing on women’s issues. After looking into the problems they were facing, I wanted to get some skills to help them more effectively. Maternal health isn’t really on the development agenda in my country.
My experience here really opened my way of thinking, broadened my mind. I’ve learnt how things are interrelated – how social factors can contribute to health outcomes. You get an insight into the debates in international development here. Now with all this knowledge I’ve been provided with, I hope to return and apply these skills. My work will become more involved in community development and less focused on the biomedical factors only.
I appreciated the style of teaching here since it is so student-centred. You are allowed to express yourself and encouraged to go beyond what the lecturers tell you, to develop new ideas, discuss and debate.
I would encourage friends to come here because even though the courses are challenging, life itself is full of challenges. The way the programmes are designed here you gain insight into so many different fields. You may be following an MSc in Population and Reproductive Health but you delve into subjects like social development, research, project design etc."
“Here many postgraduate students from all over the world come together and share their experiences. When I came here I saw that the problem in my country is the same as in other countries but the solutions are different. Through the group work with my colleagues, I gained so much insight into their experiences. When I wanted to find out about something in a different country, I would just ask some of my colleagues and find out about the many issues affecting them.
What I’ve learned here is that the solution to working on problems must be developed by the people who are part of the culture of the country that is affected. Difficulties arise when large organisations want to implement development policies across several countries.. each country has its own way of dealing with things.”
“It was a lot of work and often quite difficult but it’s a great advantage to take the course. You’re not focused on one area but broaden your horizon. I’ve done things on health policy, gender, ethics – things I wouldn’t have considered earlier.
What I’ve learned here at IGHD is that you can empower people to speak. You have rights as a patient and we can encourage them to speak about their context and concerns.”
"I did an undergraduate degree in my home country of Malawi and went straight on to work for the Centre for Agricultural Research at the University of Malawi. From there, I moved to World Vision Malawi, where I worked as a Community Development Programme Manager for seven years and then as Monitoring and Evaluation Manager for several months.
During my nine years of working, I was exposed to the enormous challenges which the poor face in their fight against poverty – health being one of these challenges. These challenges impinged greatly on all the efforts I had put into the work that I had done and I wanted to deepen my understanding of the poor, hoping to bring to light the root cause of poverty. I believed that by doing the course at Queen Margaret, I would hopefully find a solution.
The course opened my eyes to International Issues that have either a direct or an indirect impact on the socio-economic state of the poor, especially in developing countries. The lecturers were very supportive and made my study and stay in Edinburgh very memorable.
Currently, I am doing Community Development Consulting in Malawi and Southern Africa (and hoping to expand the market to the whole of Africa). The course has helped me in so many ways: for example, it has increased my confidence and I have an expanded my views of issues that concern the poor.
Before coming back to Malawi, I secured a place PhD study at Queen Margaret University and hope to start back there soon once I secure a scholarship. I appreciate the time I spent studying this course and I would like to encourage people, especially from developing countries to do it too. Your way of looking at/handling the poor will not be the same!"