Career prospects for healthcare managers are subject to a wide range of forces in high, middle and low income countries. In high income countries, there are shifts in public-private payer mix, and changes in the configuration of public-private partnerships. Middle income countries with expanding economic systems have fast growing private sector initiatives including development of hospital chains, health insurance and pharmaceutical industries.
Furthermore, middle and low income health systems are shaped by large donor investments (UK DFID, USAID, PEPFAR, the Global Fund, GAVI, UNICEF, WHO), embodying challenges in terms of delivering on vertical health programmes while simultaneously delivering on national and international health policies. Internationally, there is growing interest in developing national health insurance schemes subsidized by government.
A Health Management degree from the University of Sheffield represents good 'international currency' as it is widely recognised, and has the potential to enable people to progress in health management careers. In countries in the South, awards from prestigious Northern institutions are perceived as superior, and in some international NGOs are sine qua nons.
We believe that this programme can address the gap between international needs for health management skills and the current academic curriculum, which has been shown to be too didactic and focused on theoretical models for managing health systems. Across all health systems, we aim to promote the development of core competencies in health management, including principles for innovation, problem solving, change management, evaluating programme implementation, administering health services and community health programmes, entrepreneurship, principles of partnership and cross-sector working. The programme will emphasise development of flexible and transferable management and leadership skills that can be used to adapt to the changing requirements of a wide range of diverse health systems.