Analysis of cost of international public health interventions

There are two sets of literature estimating the cost of health interventions in different countries.However, actual program cost data are not available for all programs (whereas it is easier to generate estimates using the “ingredients approach”).  In this project, we will undertake a literature review to match actual program costs to those predicted by the ingredients approach, for a range of public health interventions.  We will then utilize this to try to generate some systematic patterns and observations as to the relationship between the two methods.  The aim would be to write a publishable article on the findings, also with the objective of utilizing this in international policy-setting.  An example of the use of such data is from Horton et al 2009, where the cost data (published by the World Bank) are being used as an input to slides developed for the Millennium Development Goals summit in October 2010.

The student will help develop a database to link the “ingredients approach” costs with the published data on actual program costs from the field.  The student and supervisor will undertake analysis of the relationship between the two sets of costs using statistical software.  The goal is to develop a publishable article on the topic, and to present preliminary findings to interested parties in international organizations (WHO and World Bank) as well as those involved in related international research projects (e.g. funded by Gates Organization).

The student will also have the opportunity to attend the Canadian Public Health Association 2011 conference in June in Montreal.  The student will also have the opportunity to participate first-hand in data collection in an ongoing project on effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of walk-in counseling, underway in the local region.

Faculty Supervisor:

Dr. Sue Horton


Vishnu Prasad



Epidemiology / Public health and policy


Life sciences


University of Waterloo


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