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PhD Studentship Opportunity in Exploring the private costs of accessing health and social care and implications for health inequalities


Faculty of Health & Medical Sciences

Guildford United Kingdom Epidemiology Health Informatics Other Other

About the Project

The British NHS is one of the most equitable healthcare systems in the world, but patients still pay out-of-pocket for travel to appointments and personal social services. People with lower incomes are most disadvantaged and the costs may prevent some from seeking the care they need. As a result, their health may suffer and inequalities in health in society worsen. Of the several factors that contribute to deprivation and poor health (e.g. bad housing, unemployment, low skills and education), access to healthcare is under-researched.

The studentship provides an opportunity for in-depth study, from an economics perspective, of the costs incurred by private individuals in accessing health and social care, how these are distributed amongst groups in society, and how they impact on experiences and health outcomes. Whilst the details of the work will evolve over the period of the studentship, it is envisaged that mixed methods will be used and that the student will be involved in both primary and secondary data collection and analysis. The work will include: an international overview of health and social care financing policy; a systematic review of factors affecting access to health and social care, and how access affects experiences and health outcomes; selection of service user groups in deprived areas for study of access issues.

The student will be supervised by Professor Heather Gage, Director of the Surrey Health Economics Centre (SHEC): https://www.surrey.ac.uk/people/heather-gage

Situated with the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, SHEC is a vibrant research group that provides the health economics for a wide portfolio of collaborative projects in health and social care. The award is an NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (Kent, Surrey, Sussex) studentship and the successful candidate will be part of the ARC’s community of doctoral students.

This is a three year project, starting in April 2021.

Entry requirements:

Masters level qualification in heath economics, or relevant social science or health discipline. IELTS Academic: 6.5 or above (or equivalent) with 6 in each individual category.

How to apply:

Please apply for this PhD through the Biosciences and Medicine PhD applications portal (“Apply” tab):https://www.surrey.ac.uk/postgraduate/biosciences-and-medicine-phd.

Potential students should complete a cover letter demonstrating their interest in, and suitability for, the project. We would also like a CV detailing your previous research experience, and two academic references. Please clearly state the studentship title and supervisor on your application.


Funding Notes

The funding package for this studentship scheme is as follows:
• Full UK/EU tuition fee waiver
• Stipend at UKRI rates (£15,285 p.a.)
• Personal Computer (provided by the host department)

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