ECC4870 - Health economics - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate, Postgraduate - Unit

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


Business and Economics

Organisational Unit

Department of Economics


Professor Jeff Richardson and Ms Jenny Watts

Not offered in 2017


A survey of theoretical issues in the economics of health systems and the major health policy issues confronting Australia. Emphasis is given to theories which differ from economic orthodoxy. Topics include market characteristics; market failure and regulation; equity and issues of social justice; demand analysis and human capital; the production of health and health care; theories of price formation; hospital models and hospital payment; optimal health insurance; and alternatives to Medicare.


The learning goals associated with this unit are to:

  1. have a clear understanding of the theoretical debate over the 'special' characteristics of health and the health care and health insurance markets
  2. have a clear understanding of the major theories of the demand for health care
  3. have a clear understanding of the use of economic incentives to achieve allocative and technical efficiency in the production of both health and health care services
  4. be familiar with the social and institutional characteristics of the Australian health care market and the various proposals for its reform.


Within semester assessment: 40% + Examination: 60%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. Independent study may include associated readings, assessment and preparation for scheduled activities. The unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)