Health Policy PDF Print

ΚKΠ4 - Health Policy

Tutor: Kyriakos Souliotis

Semester: 5th
ECTS: 4.5

Short Description:

This course introduces students to basic principles of health and health-care services and defines and analyzes the factors that influence health policy design and implementation. More specifically, the course discusses the various conceptual approaches to health and healthcare services, examines population healthcare needs, defines priority setting and resource allocation under budgetary restraints, categorises healthcare systems on the basis of their typology and specific characteristics, analyzes funding methods and tools and ventures into the highly controversial ground of the relationship between the public and the private sector in organizing, providing and funding healthcare services. In addition, the course presents an overview of healthcare reforms in Greece in the past twenty years, focusing on policies developed for selected sectors of the Greek National Health System (primary healthcare, public health etc.).


The course aims to:

  • Provide students with a basic understanding of key concepts in health and health services;
  • Introduce students to the rationale and impetus for healthcare reform and the need for prioritization in health policy decision making;
  • Provide students with capabilities to critically analyze individual functions of healthcare systems, applying principles of cross-functional analysis.

Learning Outcomes:

Following the completion of the course, students should:

  • Be sufficiently knowledgeable on health policy and able to assess specific policy choices in a wider political, economic and societal context;
  • Be able to participate in research protocols relating to health policy and apply contemporary tools for health policy analysis;
  • Be able to propose solutions and advocate for choices in critical health policy matters based on international best practice and experience.


The course runs over 13 three-hour long lectures. Course presentations are in PowerPoint format and are made available to students throughout the semester. Students are also requested to familiarise themselves with international health policy databases, such as the WHO HFA database and the OECD Health Database, and perform select analyses on their datasets. The course commences with general, introductory presentations to health policy, and goes on to introduce specific sectoral health policies.


Students are assessed via a written exam, which includes the discussion of at least one current critical health policy challenge.


  • Bodenheimer T.S., Grumbach K. (2010): Understanding Health Policy: a clinical approach, Parisianou Scientific Publications, Athens.
  • Contiades X., Souliotis K. (2005): Contemporary Challenges in Health Policy: Four Critical Legislative Interventions, Sakkoulas Publications, Athens - Komotini.
  • Hatziandreou E., Souliotis K. (ed.) (2005): Health Systems Reforms: International Best Practices and the Greek Reality, Papazisis Publications, Athens.
  • Souliotis K. (2000): The role of the Private Sector in the Greek NHS, Papazisis Publications, Athens.
  • Souliotis K. (ed.) (2007): Health Policy and Economics: Strategic Planning – Organization and Management – Economic Function – Sectoral Policies, Department of Social and Educational Policy, University of Peloponnese / Papazisis Publications, Athens.