This course is discontinued

HME4306 – Topics in Health Economics

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

Regulation and competition in health care and pharmaceutical markets.

This course aims to provide students with an understanding of some selected topics within the field of health economics. The topics considered may vary over time. The following topics will be discussed the spring of 2010:
• Perfect competition and monopolies
• Game theory
• Competition and regulation of health care markets.
• Advertisement and innovation
• Competition and regulation of pharmaceutical markets

This course is concerned health provider competition (hospitals) and pharmaceutical markets and investigates the role of price - and quality competition under various assumptions about market structures. The course starts out with presenting some main results from welfare theory, including some efficiency concepts, and basic market structures such as perfect competition and monopoly. Second, an introduction to game theory is given. Thereafter, game theory is applied to analyze competing firms that act strategically (duopoly/oligopoly) both in non-health care markets and in health care markets. Before, presenting issues that relate to pharmaceutical markets, economic theory on advertisement and innovation is presented.


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If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Recommended previous knowledge

There are no formal prerequisites to this course. However, this course builds on standard courses in microeconomic theory, thus a background in economics is vital. A recommended minimum background will at least be one comparable to our students with a bachelor degree in health management and health economics. Their background in economics consists of 30 ECTS including the three following courses: HØKON1101; ECON 2200/HØKON 2201 and HØKON 2301. Some knowledge to mathematics is important including topics such as: elementary algebra, functions of many variables, elasticities and optimization.


Access to teaching

A student who has completed compulsory instruction and coursework and has had these approved, is not entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework. A student who has been admitted to a course, but who has not completed compulsory instruction and coursework or had these approved, is entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework, depending on available capacity.


Written exam, 4 hours

Examination support material

Calculator (only the calculator Citizen SR-270X is allowed), formula collection and dictionary.

Language of examination

All written exams and term papers at the master's programme in Health Economics, Policy and Management have to be conducted in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.

Facts about this course






Spring 2010


Spring 2010

Teaching language