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Health Systems and Management


Admission requirements

Required course(s):



The course examines health systems from a global perspective. The primary goal of the course is to enable students entering or working within a health system to describe the parts of systems and their interactions, the environment in which the systems exist, and the internal and external forces, and points of leverage that create opportunities for change. Although health systems vary widely in their structure and performance, there is substantial similarity in the issues they face. Differences between systems are often a matter of degree and context. The course addresses health systems from a system improvement perspective, and focuses on health systems analysis, evaluation, and reform. The course
examines the various components of health systems, including financing mechanisms, human resources, medical products/technologies, and health information systems. This course also introduces the relationship between international relations, global health policy and public health outcomes.

The exact configuration of health services varies worldwide but without good policies and leadership, health systems do not function effectively. For example, without adequate health workers, health facilities, financing, and governance thousands suffer from preventable diseases that can be diagnosed and addressed. This course will discuss the different ‘building blocks’ of a health care system such as:

  • Leadership and governance

  • Health Information systems

  • Health financing

  • Human resources for health (health workforce)

  • Access to medical products and technologies

  • Effective service delivery

Course Objectives


  • Identify health system issues and service delivery problems and their root causes, and
    compare and contrast approaches to resolving or ameliorating them (group assignment)

  • Be able to produce a digital story of individual healthcare experience critically reflecting on the enablers challenges with access to appropriate healthcare (weekly media assignment)


  • Students will read and interpret the readings based on the context of the major course themes mentioned in the course description (weekly media assignment)

  • Students will be able to analyze existing health systems and be able to discuss the interaction among the different parts of the health system as well as the challenges (group assignment)


Timetables for courses offered at Leiden University College in 2023-2024 will be published on this page of the e-Prospectus.

Mode of instruction

Interactive lectures, including discussion, presentations by students, group assignments and general debates. Students will be able to understand the challenges faced in the field when tackling problems of the health system of low and middle income countries. Along with the required readings group presentations take a significant part in this course.

Assessment Method

  • Critical reflection: weekly digital story telling, 42%

  • Participation, 15%

  • Group project: written report and presentation, 43%

Reading list

To be announced at course start.


Courses offered at Leiden University College (LUC) are usually only open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Leiden University students who participate in one of the university’s Honours tracks or programmes may register for one LUC course, if availability permits. Registration is coordinated by the Education Coordinator,


Dr. Shelley-Ann Girwar,