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Critically understand and evaluate the determinants that influence population health outcomes and explain their significance in relation to Health Improvement

Module Handbook

Module Title:

Health Improvement

Module Code:

SH7009

Session:                    2019/20  Teaching period:  Spring 

Pre-requisites:          N/A

Weblearn URL:        https://student.londonmet.ac.uk/weblearn/

Welcome to the Health Improvement module

Session 2019/20

Module Booklet Contents 

1. Teaching team........................................................................................................................... 3

2. Module Summary and Description...................................................................................... 3

3. Indicative weekly teaching programme.............................................................................. 4

4. Attendance and Absence....................................................................................................... 7

5. Academic Integrity and Plagiarism...................................................................................... 7

7. Grading criteria....................................................................................................................... 10

 

8. Module specification .......................................................................................... 17     

Module Summary and Description

This is a core module for the MSc Public Health. Health Improvement is one of the three pillars of Public Health, alongside Healthcare Public Health, and Health Protection. In this module you will contextualise current public health practice, drawing on comparative approaches from the UK, and abroad. You will develop an understanding of evidence, policies and practices influencing developments in Public Health and Health Improvement. You will also develop an understanding of Health Improvement theories and frameworks and their application to real-world scenarios. You will consider the social determinants of health, health inequalities, the psychosocial aspects of health, and the impact of lifestyles and behaviours on health from a population perspective, discussing and appraising approaches to bring about change.

 

Module Aims

This core module aims to:

  • Develop an advanced understanding of the foundations of Health Improvement
  • Provide an understanding and analysis of the social determinants of health, health inequalities, and health across the life course
  • Appraise the complex nature of behaviour and its influences, identifying how to intervene to effect change 
  • Give an advanced understanding and application of the principles, models, and concepts of Health Improvement 
  • Equip you with the knowledge and skills to assess a public health issue, design an intervention strategy to overcome this issue, including an evaluation plan to assess the implementation process, and impact
  • Understand the commissioning of Health Improvement services in England

Module learning outcomes 

On successful completion of this module, you will be able to:

  1. Critically understand and evaluate the determinants that influence population health outcomes and explain their significance in relation to Health Improvement
  2. Appraise the complex nature of behaviour and its influences, identifying how to intervene to effect change 
  3. Discuss and apply relevant models, frameworks, and theories of Health Promotion to influence change 
  4. Develop and defend an intervention strategy and evaluation plan to tackle a public health concern 

3. Indicative weekly teaching programme

The indicative weekly programme shows the topic likely to be covered in each teaching week, please note that the precise order can change. Check your Weblearn module for up to date information.

To view the time, date and location of class see your personal timetable available at https://student.londonmet.ac.uk/timetable 

Teaching week

Date of session

Topic’s explored this week

1

03/02/20

Introduction to public health and health improvement

2

10/02/20

 

The social determinants of health and health inequalities 

3

17/02/20

Health improvement across the life course

4

24/02/20

Evidence-based public health

5

02/03/20

Online task: Health in all policies 

6

09/03/20

 

Guidance on developing and evaluating complex interventions

7

16/03/20

Assessment A: Presentations

8

23/03/20

A theory of change / Assessment B discussion

9

30/03/20

 

The COM-B model of behaviour, and the Behaviour Change Wheel

10

20/04/20

The scaling up of health improvement interventions

11

27/04/20 - No session

Assignment due Friday 01/05/20 at 3pm

 

 

Below is a brief description of the planned sessions for each week of this module. This guide is subject to change as we progress through the module. 

 

Week 1: Introduction to public health and health improvement

This week we will discuss the concepts and definitions of health, public health, health improvement, and wellbeing. We will look at the key developments, shifting paradigms, and the broad approaches in public health and health improvement. 

Week 2: The social determinants of health and health inequalities

This week we will focus on the avoidable and unfair differences in health status between groups of people. We will also look at the social determinants of health, the economic and social factors that have a profound effect on health. 

Week 3: Health across the life course 

This week we will focus on how events can impact on our health throughout our lives. We will discuss health improvement across the life course, looking at the social determinants of health at life transitions. Life expectancy and life point transitions in different parts of the world will be explored.

Week 4: Evidence-based public health 

This week we will review the concepts of evidence-based public health outlining the current thinking about evidence, the reasons for pursuing evidence-based public health including the skills required by public health practitioners to become evidence-based. This session will include a practical session on how to search the existing evidence in relation to a public health / health improvement concern.

Week 5: Online task – Health in all policies

Many of the determinants of health and health inequities in populations have social, environmental and economic origins that extend beyond the direct influence of the health sector and health policies. This week you will complete an online task on health in all policies, defined by the WHO as an approach to public policies across sectors that systematically takes into account the health implications of decisions, seeks synergies, and avoids harmful health impacts in order to improve population health and health equity. Full details of this online task will be provided on the module WebLearn page.

Week 6: Guidance on developing and evaluating complex interventions 

Most public health interventions are inherently complex, with multiple interacting components, delivered at multiple levels. The Medical Research Council provides guidance on the development, evaluation and implementation of complex interventions to improve health. This week we will review said guidance from the Medical Research Council.

Week 7: Assessment A: Presentations 

The group presentations (Assessment A) will take place this week. Please check the module WebLearn page for your specific presentation time slot. You should arrive 15-minutes before you are scheduled to present.

Week 8: A theory of change

Continuing on from the determinants of a public health issue identified in week 7, this week we will look at a theory of change to changing this public health issue, or a determinant of this public health issue. A theory of change documents a path from needs to activities to outcomes to impact. It describes a change and the steps involved in making change happen, depicts assumptions that lie behind reasoning, and where possible backed up by evidence. This week we will also discuss Assessment B.

Week 9: The COM-B model of behaviour, and the Behaviour Change Wheel

Behaviour comes about from an interaction between one`s ‘capability’ to perform a behaviour, and the ‘opportunity’ and ‘motivation’ to carry out that behaviour. A new behaviour or behavioural change requires a change in one or more of these components. This theory is known as the COMB model. Many frameworks exist upon which health improvement interventions can be based, however, it is not clear which is the most comprehensive and conceptually coherent. The

Behaviour Change Wheel (BCW) aims to overcome this problem and synthesizes 19 behaviour change frameworks with the COM-B model sitting at its centre. The BCW provides an evidencebased stepped approach to intervention development, encouraging intervention designers to consider a full range of options, choosing only those that are most promising.

Week 10: The scaling up of health improvement interventions

In order to achieve population-wide health improvements, health improvement interventions found to be effective in a research setting need to be implemented as widely as possible. This involves a change of scale or a scaling up of the intervention. This week we will discuss the steps in the scaling up process. 

 

To pass the module you must achieve an overall minimum mark of 50%. If you pass the module on re-assessment, the component you resit will be capped at a pass mark level of 50%  

4. Attendance and Absence

You are required to attend all teaching sessions of this module. If your attendance is unsatisfactory, the module leader will arrange that you are withdrawn the module. Before doing this, the hub will email you to inform you of this. If there is a specific reason why you cannot attend a particular session, you must contact the module leader in advance of the lecture. If the reason is accepted, it will be noted on the register as an authorised absence. You will only be granted authorised absence for one week; if the absence is longer you must discuss this further with your Student Liaison Advisor or Academic Tutor. 

5. Academic Integrity and Plagiarism                                   

Academic integrity requires honesty in your studies. You should not present another person’s sentences or ideas as your own work. You should clearly identify quotations through the use of quotation marks and references to the sources. Failure to adhere to these academic standards may lead to allegations of academic misconduct, which will be investigated by the Casework Office.

Academic misconduct covers a variety of practices, such as: 

  • Plagiarism: copying another person’s ideas or words and presenting them as your own work, without the use of quotation marks and/or references;
  • Self-plagiarism: reproducing parts of one of your assignments in another piece of work;
  • Inventing, altering or falsifying the results of experiments or research;
  • Commissioning another person to complete an assessment;
  • Collaborating with others in the production of a piece of assessed work which is presented as entirely your own work;
  • Cheating in an exam (e.g., by taking revision notes into the exam room). 

For full details of academic misconduct and how allegations are investigated, see the relevant section of the University’s academic regulations: https://student.londonmet.ac.uk/yourstudies/student-administration/rules-and-regulations/academic-misconduct/.   

6. Assessment

All assessments are designed to support your learning and help you develop a deeper understanding of the topics covered in your module. The module is passed on the aggregate score across all summative assessments.

Module Assessments (Summative)

Assessment Method

Description of Item

% weighting

Due

 

Group Presentation

See below

 

30%

16th March 2020

 

Written Report

See below

 

70%

1st May 2020

 

 

Assessment A – Oral presentation of a public health problem: 30% of your overall mark

This will be assessed by an oral presentation of not more than 20 minutes on a chosen public health problem. You should be able to use epidemiological data and other evidence to:

  1. Show, analyse and discuss your public health problem
  2. Identify and discuss the determinants of the public health problem 3. Explain and discuss the implications of the public health problem


Assessment B – A report detailing a health improvement intervention: 70% of your overall mark

The second assessment is a 4000-word report detailing the design, development and evaluation of an evidence-based intervention to overcome a determinant / behaviour related to the public health problem presented in the first assessment. 

The report should: -

  1. Present an understanding of a public health problem, its determinants, defining the problem in behavioural terms 
  2. Identify what needs to change
  3. Identify appropriate ways to intervene, designing an intervention, including ethical considerations
  4. Identify stakeholder engagement, the resources and inputs required
  5. Identify evaluation measures 
  6. Set an action plan

Both Assessment A and Assessment B will be marked against the criteria presented on the following page. 


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