MPH5269 - Foundations of health policy - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - 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

Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine

Chief examiner(s)

Professor Maxine Morand


Karly O'Donaghue

Quota applies

This unit is quota restricted. Selection is on a first-in, first enrolled basis.

Unit guides


Alfred Hospital

  • First semester 2019 (Off-campus)
  • First semester 2019 (On-campus)


Must be enrolled in a Postgraduate degree




Delivery of health services is underpinned by a framework of health policies and other health system elements. Health professional leaders and managers, and those who aspire to these roles, need to know about these policies and about the process of policy making so that they can understand why a policy is what it is, and how to engage in the policy making process.

This unit involves a structured review of policy making processes, via WebCT based modules, readings and online tasks, supplemented by workshops with senior health policy practitioners. It considers key challenges and major issues confronting governments and health systems around the world, and how policy can help address these. The unit presents foundation concepts in health policy, which can be extended with further study of health care delivery policies (MPH5272) and/or global health and primary prevention policies (MPH5260).


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

  1. Interpret and communicate the policy development process
  2. Identify relevant stakeholders and critically analyse and interpret their policy interests
  3. Research and apply theory and practice guiding health policy content and process
  4. Critically analyse the key components of policy development
  5. Critically evaluate and explain the implications of the political context of policy development
  6. Effectively communicate complex information related to health systems policy and critically reflect on its application and development


  • 6 x Critical reflections (300 words each ) (30%)
  • Written assignment - critical analysis (2,100 words) (35%)
  • Written assignment - critical report (2,100 words) (35%)

Workload requirements

Off-campus: 12 hours self-directed study per week, plus 2 compulsory block days.

See also Unit timetable information

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

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