For more information about Health Policy at City, University of London, please visit the webpage using the button above.

The award

How long you will study
2 years

Domestic course fees
GBP 4000 per year

How you will study

Course starts

International course fees
GBP 7750 per year

All study options

About Health Policy at City, University of London

City's MSc in Health Policy helps you understand, navigate and influence the 21st century health and health care environment

Who is it for?

City's MSc Health Policy is the ideal route for graduates looking to start, change or develop their career within the health policy field. It combines an international focus and academic rigour with the development of practical, transferable skills that can be applied in a wide range of real-world health policy, planning and management settings.

We welcome applications from graduates (UK or international) from any academic discipline. The course is also suitable for established professionals from a wide range of backgrounds, including:

  • medical, nursing and allied health professions
  • health management and administration
  • public health
  • national and local government
  • national NGOs
  • international agencies
  • research institutions and consultancies
    pharmaceutical, insurance and other health-related industries.

Find out more about what we do by visiting our Facebook page and following us on Twitter.


Health and health care policy are at the top of the political agenda around the world. People are living longer, consumers are expecting more from their health services and chronic illnesses are becoming prevalent. Medical technology is advancing rapidly, creating ever-increasing demand for the latest treatments.

Health policy affects and is affected by all of these factors. It aims to meet the growing challenges facing health systems by providing answers to such questions as:

  • How can we best meet people's changing health needs?
  • How can we control spiralling health costs, while maintaining high quality and comprehensive health services?
  • What is the most effective way of organising and paying for health care?
  • How can we tackle inequalities in health and access to care?
  • How can we measure and improve the performance of health systems?

City's MSc in Health Policy gives you the knowledge and tools you need to understand, analyse and influence the health policy process, and to operate within an increasingly complex policy environment.

You will analyse the social, political and economic factors that affect policy at a local, national and international level. You will explore how and where policy is made, and who the key players are; and learn how to present your ideas clearly and persuasively to a range of influential stakeholders to bring about change.

“Policy making, in health as elsewhere, is a political process. Everyone has an agenda. On the MSc Health Policy you'll learn how to navigate your way through this complex, fast-moving and highly politicised environment, and to develop your powers of analysis and persuasion to bring about real change that benefits patients and wider society."

Course Director, Dr Justin Needle

Requirements and how to apply

Entry requirements

*Applicants should hold a second-class honours degree or the equivalent from an international institution. We also consider applications from individuals who may not have prior experience of working within the health sector but who have plans for a career in health policy.
*Applicants who do not hold a degree but do have relevant employment experience in the health sector may be considered.

INTO City, University of London

Don't meet the entry requirements? INTO City, University of London offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare you for study at City, University of London. You'll learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre.

These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry. To prepare for this degree course, learn more about the Graduate Diploma in Social Sciences and the Arts.

Kaplan International College London

City works in partnership with Kaplan International College (KIC) London to provide preparatory courses for international students. Pre Masters courses at KIC London offer comprehensive support to students wishing to complete their postgraduate study at City. Progression to this degree is guaranteed if you complete the KIC London Pre-Masters course at the required level.

English requirements

For students whose first language is not English, the following qualification is also required:

  • IELTS: 7.0.

INTO English Language Programmes

Don't meet the English language requirements? INTO City, University of London offers English language programmes to help prepare you for study at university. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to degree courses.

Visa requirements

If you are not from the European Economic Area / Switzerland and you are coming to study in the UK, you may need to apply for a visa or entry clearance to come to the UK to study.

The way that you apply may vary depending on the length of your course. There are different rules for:

  • Students on courses of more than six months
  • Students on courses of less than six months
  • Students on a pre-sessional English language course.

If you require a Tier 4 student visa to study in the UK, you cannot undertake any City courses on a part-time basis.

For more information see our main Visa page.

How to apply

Applications for September 2017 entry are now closed.

If you have any enquiries please contact:

T: +44 (0)20 7040 5000

Teaching and learning

You will learn through a mix of lectures, class discussions and seminars, student presentations, case study analysis, interactive computer-based exercises, a virtual learning environment (Moodle) and self-directed reading.

Lecturers are drawn from City's Schools of Health Sciences and Arts and Social Sciences. A number of distinguished external honorary and guest lecturers have also taught on the programme, including:

  • Professor David Oliver (President of the British Geriatrics Society, former National Clinical Director for Older People at the Department of Health, and Visiting Fellow at the King's Fund)
  • Professor Paul Burstow (Chair of the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, and Minister of State for Care Services in the Coalition Government, 2010-12)
  • Brigadier Tim Hodgetts CBE (Medical Director, Defence Medical Services, and former Medical Director, NATO Allied Rapid Reaction Corps)
  • Beccy Baird (Fellow in Health Policy, the King's Fund)

City has an international reputation for academic excellence in the areas of health and food policy, health services research, health management, health economics and executive leadership across a broad range of professional disciplines. You will learn from and alongside colleagues who aim to influence health policy and lead health-related initiatives.

Modules are assessed through a combination of written coursework, group work and examination. The assessments reflect the learning objectives of the modules.


You will take five core taught modules, which cover the main topics and issues within health policy, the health policy process, the principles of policy analysis, and research methods.

You will also choose two or three further elective modules covering a range of related areas, including public health, global health and health management and leadership.

Core modules

Elective modules

* The core module HRM020 covers basic research skills and enables you to perform entry-level statistics. It forms the first part of the 30-credit module HRM001 Introduction to research methods and applied data analysis, which goes on to cover more advanced research skills. If you choose to take HRM001, this will replace the core module HRM020.

** A maximum of one public health module (PHM001 or PHM003) may be chosen as an elective.

† A maximum of two health management (HMM) modules may be chosen as electives. Depending on module capacity, it may only be possible to take one HMM module.

Alternatively, you can take modules from this Masters degree as standalone CPPD (Continuing Personal and Professional Development) courses. In this case, course costs might vary. For further information please click on the CPPD links below each module.

Discover more School of Health Sciences CPPD modules.


You will also write a final health policy-related dissertation, on a topic of your choice, of between 12,000 and 15,000 words.

Recent dissertation topics have included:

  • Undocumented migrant access to European Union health services
  • Increasing the uptake of diabetic retinopathy screening among Black and Minority Ethnic groups in the UK
  • The determinants of pharmaceutical expenditure in Greece
  • Improving recruitment and retention of health workers in rural and remote areas of Kazakhstan
  • A critical analysis of UK policy on retention and use of residual new born blood spot screening samples
  • Exploring the discourses of healthcare rationing using three international comparative case studies
  • How can community health education improve migrant maternal and child health in China's urban areas?

Download the relevant programme specification

Career prospects

Because health and health care are such high priorities for both the public and policy makers, health policy specialists will continue to be in high demand. Therefore, if you are working or want to work within any health-related organisation in the public, private or third sectors, this course will help you develop the key transferable skills you need to succeed.

Graduates of the MSc Health Policy have gone on to a variety of policy, campaigning/advocacy and research roles within the public sector such as:

  • The NHS and international ministries of health
  • NGOs and third-sector organisations including the Patients Association and a number of professional associations
  • The private sector such as consultancy, corporate communications and pharmaceutical companies.

Study options for this course

Notes about fees for this course


Full-time: £8,000

Part-time: £4,000 per year


Full-time: £15,500

Part-time: £7,750 per year

More about fees


Please note a non-refundable deposit of £500 is required when accepting your offer in order to secure your place.


Explore up-to-date information about funding options, available financial support and typical living costs.

Future Finance Loans

Future Finance offers students loans of between £2,500 and £40,000 to help cover tuition fees and living expenses. All students and courses are considered. All loans are subject to credit checks and approval for further details please visit the City Finance website.


The School of Health Sciences believes that exceptional academic and clinical performance should be recognised and rewarded. We have several scholarships available for students starting on our courses this September and January.

MSc Health Policy

Introduced by programme director Dr. Justin Needle, this short film will tell you more about the programme and the opportunities it opens up to graduates looking to develop their career within the international health policy field.


You have the opportunity to do a placement, but it is not a formal requirement of the course. We encourage you to create your own. One recent student worked within the refugee camp in Calais alongside the NGO Doctors of the World as part of her dissertation research on refugee access to health care.

Academic facilities

As part of the University of London you can also become a member of Senate House Library for free with your student ID card.

Learn a language for free

We offer a free language course for City, University of London students.

Find out how to apply

Student support

We offer an extensive support network during your time here at City, University of London - from Learning Support (including disability support) and counselling to financial and career advice - leaving you free to enjoy every opportunity campus life has to offer.

Find out more about the different types of student support available.

Entry requirements

Contact City, University of London to find course entry requirements.

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