Programs and Degrees

MPH Concentration in Health Systems Management

The Health Systems Management concentration trains future managers and leaders who seek to improve the health care delivery services in diverse organizational settings worldwide. By introducing students to the fundamental functional areas of management within the context of health services along with a professional practicum experience, students are prepared for entry level managerial roles in health care settings. Taking a systems approach, courses emphasize active management in planning, financing, implementing, evaluating, and maintaining complex systems.programs pictures

Employment Opportunities for Graduates

Students concentrating on the offerings of this focus area can anticipate careers in leadership and management in the public or private sector, whether domestically, in other industrialized nations or in emerging economies. Specific settings for such careers include institutions that deliver preventative, curative, or palliative care to individuals; entities engaged in funding health sector programs or in payment for care; government agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) focused on public health; settings devoted to policy formulation; and enterprises providing goods and services in support of the above.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the school's general admission requirements, the department requires the following:

  • Combined verbal and quantitative GRE scores above the 40th percentile.
  • GPA of at least 3.2. Applicants with a GPA between 3.0 and 3.2 will be considered for admission by a panel of three faculty members if the career statement, recommendation letters, and experience merit further consideration.
  • A career statement that shows a summary knowledge of the field of global health management and policy or a specific focus area within the department, and clearly stated objectives and rationale for applying to the department.
  • Letters of recommendation that attest to the applicant's ability to do graduate work and dedication to the field.
  • Experience (paid or voluntary) in cross-cultural or healthcare/delivery settings is desirable but not required.

Program Requirements

Graduates of the program must complete a minimum of 45 credits including school core requirements (18 credits) and program course requirements (17 credits), along a culminating experience and a practicum (see below for more details).

Program Competencies

  • Apply population-based and public health findings and principles in assessing individuals and groups at risk of disease and injury and making recommendations for improved health in clinical practice settings. (BIOS 6030, EPID 6030, GHSD 6030, TRMD 6010, GHSD 6140, GHSD 6170)
  • Identify the theoretical and applied bases of economics in healthcare in the delivery of care to populations; access to care of populations; and organization of medical service delivery organizations. (GHSD 6030, GHSD 6450, GHSD 6540, GHSD 6780)
  • Explain and analyze the issues of quality, access, and efficiency of healthcare service delivery. (GHSD 6030, GHSD 6170, GHSD 6450)
  • Identify and describe the main components of the organization, financing, and delivery of health services and public health systems in the U.S. and other contexts.(GHSD 6030, GHSD 6140, GHSD 6540, GHSD 6780)
  • Describe frameworks for understanding and assessing health systems performance.(GHSD 6030, GHSD 6140, GHSD 6170, GHSD 6780)
  • Apply "systems thinking" approaches to viewing complex situations, defining problems, and formulating solutions. (GHSD 6030, GHSD 6140, GHSD 6170, GHSD 6780)
  • Apply basic managerial concepts and tools to program planning, budgeting, monitoring, and evaluation of organizational and community-based initiatives. (GHSD 6030, GHSD 6140, GHSD 7170, GHSD 6380, GHSD 6450, GHSD 6540, GHSD 6780)
  • Incorporate knowledge of the public health core areas of epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental health, health systems management, and the biological, behavioral, social, and cultural aspects of health and disease, in addressing and solving problems.(BIOS 6030, EPID 6030, GCHB 6030, GEHS 6030, GHSD 6030, GHSD 6140, GHSD 6170, GHSD 6780)

School Required Core Courses

BIOS 6030 Introduction to Biostatistics (3)
EPID 6030 Epidemiologic Methods I (3)
GEHS 6030 Survey of Environmental Health (3)
TRMD 6010 Biological Basis of Disease(3)
GCHB 6030 Social and Behavioral Aspects of Global Health (3)
GHSD 6030 Introduction to Health Systems, Management and Policy (3)

Concentration Required Courses

GHSD 6140 Leadership for Clinical Improvement (3)
GHSD 6170 Quality Management in Health Care (3)
GHSD 6380 Organizational Behavior (3)
GHSD 6450 Health Economics (3)
GHSD 6540 Managerial Accounting for Health Care Managers (2)
GHSD 6780 Information Systems (3)


Model Course Schedule


Culminating Experience 

The Department of Global Health Management and Policy requires students to successfully pass a culminating exam, the public health analysis, or thesis in order to complete the culminating experience graduation requirement. 

  1. Comprehensive Exam: The comprehensive exam is developed by the school (Part A: which will test the student's knowledge of the core course material) and the department (Part B: which will test the student's knowledge in the major areas represented by the concentration core courses). Part B of the exam will be prepared by faculty representing each concentration, so that students will only sit for their concentration's exam. This exam will be given only three times each year and it is the student's responsibility to be present in New Orleans to take the exam on the given day. Students must arrange their schedules accordingly.

  2. Public Health Analysis: The public health analysis (PHA) will demonstrate the student's capacity for quality writing and should provide evidence of a thorough understanding of a specific field of study within public health. The PHA is a substantive review and discussion of the body of knowledge in a selected field of public health. The PHA should demonstrate a comprehensive awareness of the literature in a specific field. The report should thoroughly and completely address the project undertaken. The final report should be presented to the faculty advisor by the appropriate deadline. Examples of acceptable PHAs are as follows: comprehensive or systematic literature reviews, meta-analysis, or secondary data analysis. The PHA should cover a broad topic and not be too focused on a specific case study.

  3. Thesis: Among the options to fulfill the culminating experience requirement in GHMP, the master's level thesis requires the highest level of commitment from the student. The thesis will demonstrate the student's capacity for quality research and should provide evidence of mastery of a specific field of study within public health. Potential topics should be framed in terms of a question to be asked, a problem to explore, or a set of hypotheses to be tested. The thesis should also demonstrate a comprehensive awareness of the literature in a specific field. As such, the thesis should only be considered by the most advanced masters-level students, and requires the advance approval of a faculty thesis committee, which must certify that the student is perceived to be capable of successfully completing it.

Learn more about the Culminating Experience by downloading the Culminating Experience Handbook, which includes information about student options and required forms.


The Department of Global Health Systems and Development requires a period of practical training (the Practicum) of a minimum of 250 hours, usually in the summer between the second and third semesters (for those enrolling in fall). The practicum provides students with experience in an actual health delivery or development setting, program or project, in which students apply the knowledge and skills acquired in their coursework to practical settings. The specific outline and reporting requirements of the practicum are detailed in the SPHTM field practicum handbook.


Health Systems Management Faculty

Joni Steinberg, PhD - Concentration Lead

Jane Bertrand, PhD
Lizheng Shi, PhD
Mark Diana, PhD
Arthur Mora, PhD
Rick Boss, MD, MMM
Michael McLachlan, CPA, MBA

For more information contact:

Alison Rinehart
Program Coordinator
Phone: 504-988-5895
Location: Tidewater Building, 19th Floor


1440 Canal Street | Suite 1900 | #8346 | New Orleans, LA 70112 | 504-988-5428