You can choose any one from the four topics listed in the following:
- I. Health economic theory and practice
1. Based on your work experience, expertise, or the field of interest, choose a health care issue in your health care system (for example, uneven distribution of physicians, shortage of nurses, long waiting for elective surgery,...etc), describe and analyse the problem, identify one related health care policy that has been implemented or suggested, describe this policy, discuss and criticise it from an economic perspective.
2. There are some economic commentators who do not see health care as being different to other goods and services and therefore argue that we should use the private competitive market in delivering health care. From both positive perspective (for example, market failure and efficiency) and normative economic perspective (for example, equity and justice), discuss and explain why you agree or disagree with this statement.
3. Define and discuss what economic evaluation is. You need to cover at least Cost-Minimisation Analysis, Cost-Effective Analysis, Cost-Utility Analysis and Cost-Benefit Analysis. Do you think the use of economic evaluation is appropriate for public health interventions? Use economic concepts or theories (for example, opportunity cost and efficiency) plus other reasons (for example, social values) to discuss and explain why it is or it is not appropriate.
4. "Most researchers and policy-makers would accept the need for priority setting (although some in the health care sector still disagree), but the issue of how priority setting is to be achieved remains strongly contested". Discuss and analyse this statement, making sure you assess the strengths and weaknesses of at least one economic approach to priority setting of your choosing.