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Imperial College London

Health Systems Development: A Focus on Health Service Delivery and Human Resources for Health

Imperial College London via Coursera


This specialization is intended for people interested in health systems and how they function. Participants will learn about the global health systems landscape and the challenges and opportunities to achieve better health outcomes.

This specialisation is divided into three courses which are offered as massive online open access courses (Courses 1-3), and a fourth course which is offered as part of the Online MPH degree (capstone). The Health Systems Development specialisation is geared toward learners who have no prior knowledge of health systems or those who are starting to explore this area of study. Overall, sessions in this specialisation span 16 week with approximately 96 hours of viewing learning materials per week. Formative assessments in the form of quizzes and activities are incorporated throughout the weeks to help learners gauge their level of depth of understanding and to prepare them for their summative assessments.

Participants will have the opportunity to explore a range of areas within health systems.
The first course will introduce the main building blocks of health systems and shed some light on key components of well-functioning health systems including how health system performance is assessed.
In course two, students will learn how to conduct a health impact assessment and how to assess the impacts of policies, plans and projects, as well as how that support decision-makers make choices regarding alternatives and improvements to prevent disease or injury and to actively promote health.
The third course explores human resources for health and service delivery. In this course, students will learn about and analyse country experiences in transforming health services delivery, and interventions and to address human resources for health challenges at a global level.

By the end of this specialisation, learners should be able to identify key components of, and critically compare, different health systems; analyse country experiences in transforming services; and apply theoretical framework for assessing the health impacts of policies, plans and projects.


  • Health Service Delivery
    • This week you will learn about health service delivery, explore how to deconstruct the relationships between health service delivery and other aspects of the health system, as well as distinguish between strengths and limitations for different approaches used to transform health services
  • Health Service Transformations
    • This week you will learn about various approaches used globally to transform health service delivery to respond to population need as well as how to use root cause analysis techniques to identify and diagnose health service delivery bottlenecks and analyse country experiences in transforming health services delivery.
  • Human Resources for Health
    • This week you will learn about human-resources-for-health and familiarise yourselves with concepts such as supply, demand and need in the context of health workforce. You will also get a chance to explore the opportunities and challenges global human-resources-for-health face globally in the era of Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Mitigating Global Human-Resources-for-Health Challenges
    • This week you will explore various frameworks, tools and approaches to address human-resources-for-health challenges globally, and you will have the opportunity to critique strategies to mitigate global human-resources-for-health challenges in order to support evidence informed decision making for health system reform.

Taught by

Dr Sondus Hassounah


4.7 rating at Coursera based on 55 ratings

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