Short course

Economic Models and Human Genomics

From this five-day course you will gain an understanding of economic evaluations used in genomic medicine.

Start date
13-17 November 2023
5 days
Home - £1000 International - £1830
Postgraduate Microcredential
15 credits

Module overview

With the UK Government’s effort to produce high quality evidence-based genomic medicine, predicated on information on the benefits and costs associated with genomic medicine, it is important that students understand the use of health economic information in decision making. This module explores the potential impact of genomic medicine and technologies on the healthcare system, its patients and their families. The health economic approach of economic evaluation methods will be used to demonstrate the potential costs and benefits of new clinical and technological approaches.

Technological advances in the area of genomic medicine have led to new tests with major impact on improving disease diagnosis and effectiveness of treatments. However, the continuous growth in the use of genomic technologies has cost implications. Using established economic models it is possible to predict the costs of new treatments and assess benefits to patients in the context of the available resources for health care. In addition, this module will explore the factors that determine the effects of the rapid development of new technologies on health care systems covering the role and relative influence that government, doctors and the public exert in this process. These will be analysed to assess whether clients/patients are best served by current arrangements and whether people's health outcomes match reasonable expectations. Students will be encouraged to propose ways of tackling perceived shortcomings.

The teaching on this module is shared with two additional MSc programmes in Public Health and Health Economics and does not have a specific genomic focus, although students will be encouraged to consider the genomic applications.  The number of places for Genomic Medicine students on this module is capped at five per year.

Module content

  • Critically evaluate the different types of economic evaluation used in genomic medicine, including: definition and purpose of economic evaluation; the concept of opportunity cost in economic evaluation; measuring outcomes in the context of an economic evaluation.
  • Types of economic evaluation including: cost effectiveness analysis; cost utility analysis; and cost benefit analysis.
  • Types of health outcome measures to assess new genomic interventions
  • The limitations of using health outcome measures in the context of diseases where treatments may not be available.
  • Issues surrounding health economic evaluations in genomic medicine, including the use of genomic technologies.
  • How to present and interpret the results of an economic evaluation, for example, a cost per quality adjusted life year, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs).
  • Describe how to undertake a budget impact analysis in genomic medicine.
  • Discuss how healthcare decision makers use health economic evidence when deciding how to prioritise health care interventions in genomic medicine.


15 Masters level credits

Attendance required

Teaching delivered over 5 days.

Module leads

Dr Sue Jowett (Reader in Health Economics, Institute of Applied Health Research) 

Module Prerequisites

This module can be taken as a stand-alone assessed or non-assessed course.  Please contact the Programme Administrator for further information at