Health policy & Health Systems

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Data Assignment:

Using Health Systems Data to Understand Health Outcomes Overview The objective of this exercise is to evaluate the association between health system features and outcomes across countries, using existing data sources to conduct a simple analysis. Using comparative health, health system and economic data from one of the data sources provided (or one of your own), formulate a testable hypothesis and conduct an exploratory analysis examining whether data supports your hypothesis. Because this is a course on comparative health care systems, this exercise is not designed to simply compare health outcomes in the United States with those of other countries. Rather students are encouraged to take advantage of data sources, which contain sufficient information on other developed and developing countries. The primary focus of your report should be interpretation of data presented in graphs (scatterplots are good for this type of analysis) and/or tables (may be preferable if analyzing limited number of countries).

The structure of your report should consist of a) a statement of your hypothesis(es) and rationale, including support from readings and studies, as needed; b) description of countries selected for study (e.g., all OECD countries, one or more WHO regions, etc); dependent (outcome) and independent variables; c) description of results, including countries that may be exceptions (outliers) to the general relationship observed; d) discussion of results in relation to your original hypothesis(es).

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