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Health and Development

Code KD613
Module Status Elective
Facilitator Nadine Ferris France
Duration 25 hours
Credits 5

Module Aim

This course aims to provide learners with an informed overview of the key issues around global health and development, and to investigate current perspectives on the broad and interconnecting causes, consequences and policy responses to some of the world’s health problems.

Module Objectives

  • To give an outline of the major global health problems as well as the social, economic, biomedical and environmental determinants of health in low-income countries.
  • To highlight the vulnerabilities experienced by communities that lead to ill-health, and examine the interconnectedness between these vulnerabilities.
  • To provide an overview of some of the fundamental issues around the epidemiology of diseases such as Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and malaria.
  • To provide an opportunity for students to become familiar with the key global health organisations and architecture and understand how the global and national policy environment functions.
  • To give students an opportunity to understand in more detail some key health issues such as sexual reproductive health, violence against women, emergency and humanitarian responses and human resources for health.

Module Learning Outcomes

Learners at the end of the programme should:

  • Have a broad knowledge of current perspectives of the causes, consequences and proposed solutions to the world’s health problems
  • Be able to demonstrate a critical understanding of determinants of health at a local and global level.
  • Be capable of outlining trends and key issues with respect to disease and other health problems faced in low-income countries.
  • Have a firm understanding of the importance of addressing health as a development, and public health issue.
  • Be able to identify and critically analyse health problems from a national and global level as well as a policy and practice perspective.

Module Content

Introduction to Global Health

  • Key Issues: Background and evolution – trends and major health issues in low-income countries
  • MDGs and progress on health
  • Key indicators for health
  • Global Health from an interdisciplinary perspective – biomedical versus alternative perspectives.
  • Epidemiology and understanding the nature of the problem.

Determinants of health

  • What determines our health – biological and social determinants of health

Health systems and financing

  • What are health systems, why are they important, who influences health systems, what are the challenges to improving health systems.
  • How are health systems financed: markets in health and health care.
  • Human resources for health – key issues and challenges.

Health Policy

Who influences health policy, how is it made, how is it developed at global and country levels

International global health architecture

  • Who are the players and how do they play?
  • Current state of play on aid and donors for global health and development.
  • Role of civil society in health – global level and national level view: challenges and opportunities


The course will also cover a range of health issues that will enable students to understand key issues within a particular disease/area as well as analyse and explore causes, consequences and a focus on relevant global policies. This will also enable students to understand the interconnectedness of health and development.

  • Violence: a public health issue
  • HIV, AIDS and Sexual Reproductive Health
  • Maternal child health
  • Public health emergencies: responses and challenges
  • Environmental health


Details of assessment and up to date reading lists for this module will be made available to learners following enrolment.
Please note that this description is subject to change.



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