CENTRE FOR HEALTH ECONOMICS
PHD STUDENTSHIP OPPORTUNITY
IN ECONOMIC EVALUATION METHODS
The Centre for Health Economics (CHE) at the University of York is offering a three-year fully funded PhD
studentship to start in 2010 or early part of 2011. The project will focus on assessing and further developing
methods for long-term extrapolation of cost-effectiveness estimates to inform resources allocation decisions in
healthcare. The successful candidate will work under the supervision of Dr Andrea Manca, and be registered in
either the Department of Economics and Related Studies or the Department of Health Sciences. While
working on her/his PhD the student will be based in the Team for Economic Evaluation and Health Technology
Assessment (TEEHTA), which is part of one the various research programmes operating within CHE. Further
details can be found at: www.york.ac.uk/inst/che
Economic evaluation is increasingly used to inform policy making decisions concerning the adoption of new
healthcare technologies. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) for England and
Wales is an example of the type of agency that requires cost-effectiveness information to issue guidance
regarding the use of health technologies undergoing the Institute’s appraisal process.
One of the key elements of any economic evaluation is the time horizon over which the analysis is conducted.
While many national guidelines are silent on this respect, some (including NICE) explicitly indicate that the
time horizon for estimating cost effectiveness must be sufficiently long to reflect important differences in costs
and outcomes between the health technologies being evaluated. In many cases, the appropriate time horizon
for the analysis will be the patient’s lifetime.
Most randomised controlled clinical trials, however, have follow-up durations that are shorter than the patient’s
expected lifetime. To produce cost effectiveness evidence to support healthcare policy decisions the analyst
will have to use some form of modelling to extrapolate the trial data beyond the observed follow up period.
As part of this studentship the successful candidate is expected to review, assess and further develop the
methods used to generate long-term cost-effectiveness estimates to inform resources allocation decisions in
healthcare. The project offers a unique opportunity to develop cutting edge statistical methods for economic
evaluation applied to health policy decisions, while working in close contact with researchers in one of the most
successful health economics research groups in the UK.
Established in 1983, the Centre for Health Economics has a leading international reputation, and is now one of
the world’s largest health economics research units, employing about 40 researchers and having associations
with at least 200 academics forming the broader community of health economics specialists at the University of
York. CHE attaches high importance to scientific quality, and its researchers play a leading role in the national
and international arena.
Our staff publish in the leading international journals in their field, and the two leading international health
economics journals are edited from York. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise, CHE staff made a major
contribution to the University’s submission to the Health Services Research unit of assessment, which was
ranked first for quality in the UK. The average number of publications per year is approximately 130. CHE also
has a very strong policy impact both nationally and internationally.
CHE engages in a variety of teaching activities. Its researchers contribute to the long-standing master
programme in health economics at York and to masters courses in the Department of Health Sciences. CHE
plays a leading role in the York distance learning courses in Health Economics, and has a vibrant PhD
programme of about 12 research students. CHE delivers specialist expert workshops in a variety of fields,
including economic evaluation, health technology assessment, econometric methods and efficiency
We are at the centre of a large network of health service researchers including the, the Centre for Reviews and
Dissemination, the Department of Economics and Related Studies, Hull York Medical School, York Health
Economics Consortium and the National Primary Care Research and Development Centre based at the
Universities of Manchester and York. The health-related research and teaching activity in York encompasses a
large network of research and support staff with a community of around 200 health service researchers. Further
details of CHE’s activities can be found on our web site: http://www.york.ac.uk/inst/che/ .
The University of York is widely recognised as one of the leading research universities in the UK. The University
is also at the top of the teaching quality rankings. It has high levels of demand for undergraduate and
postgraduate places from the UK, Europe and across the world. The University was described by The Sunday
Times as “one of Britain’s academic success stories, forging a reputation to rival Oxford and Cambridge in the
space of 40 years”.
How to Apply
A complete graduate application form should be sent to Dr Andrea Manca, Centre for Health Economics,
Alcuin A, University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD, UK. Please indicate clearly on the form that you wish
to be considered for this scholarship.
Deadline for Applications
The deadline for applications is 23th July 2010. Shortlisted candidates can expect to be interviewed.
Applicants must have been ordinarily resident in the UK throughout the 3-year period preceding the date of
the award. The full award is available to UK and EU residents only. Candidates should have a strong
quantitative background (e.g. mathematics, statistics, operational research and quantitative economics) and an
interest in developing statistical methodology in the area of healthcare cost-effectiveness analysis.
Funding will include a yearly stipend (currently £13,290), as well as PhD registration fees (equivalent to EU or
UK applicants level) and research expenses. The stipend will be based on 2010/2011 research council rates.