Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

print version

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

Monash University

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine


Dr Charles Livingstone


Not offered in 2016


This unit explores key emerging challenges in health at the national and global levels. A case study approach is used to explore current issues facing health systems, including the causes, consequences, and approaches used to address the issues.

Causes are considered at the behavioural, social, cultural, political and environmental levels. A public health and/or systems thinking perspective is taken to describe and critically appraise initiatives to address identified issues.

Specific challenges which will be the focus of this unit will change over time in line with contemporary and emerging issues, but for example may include: obesity, population ageing, climate change, emerging infectious diseases and mental health, terrorism, and natural disasters.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Analyse the behavioural, social and cultural, environmental and political determinants that contribute to selected emerging challenges in health.
  2. Explain and apply the basic principles of a systems thinking approach to emerging health challenges.
  3. Identify and appraise public health principles and approaches to control, prevent or otherwise address selected emerging challenges.
  4. Analyse the implications of selected emerging challenges for the delivery of health care and structure and functions of health systems.
  5. Describe and explain basic risk and emergency management principles.


Case study (900 words) (15%)
Group presentation (20 minutes) (20%)
Critical appraisal (1,500 words) (25%)
Examination (2 hours) (40%)

80% attendance at tutorials and participation in online tasks.

Workload requirements

6 hours per week contact hours plus 6 hours per week private study.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Health science


One of (HSC1200, HSC1081, PHH1081).