Policy, Organisation and Incentives in Health Systems

A key objective for financially constrained health systems, facing a growing and aging population with increasingly complex patients, is to obtain the best possible value from their budgets available. Another concern of most health systems is to address health inequalities. Thus, health systems require incentivising policies that aim to deliver high-quality health care in the areas of highest need at the lowest feasible cost.

OHE conducts an extensive programme of research on health system policies, organisation and incentives. Our work aims to inform policy making globally in health care, social care and public health areas of greatest priority.

Examples of research topics that this theme addresses include:

  • The intrinsic and extrinsic factors that incentivise agents in health systems, and how these yield certain behaviours and outcomes.
  • The appropriate measures of productivity for health systems and the trade-offs between efficiency and effectiveness.
  • The funding of health care and the roles of the public, private and charitable sectors.
  • The measurement, prevention and reduction of health inequalities and discriminatory access to health and social care services.

Key objective for this research theme:

  • To expand our understanding of the policies that aim to improve quality while safeguarding the long-term financial sustainability of health systems.

OHE’s policy positions:

  • Health systems should appropriately incentivise the use of evidence-based, cost-effective interventions that support the development of healthier populations and achieve sustainability while being responsive to patients’ needs.



Zamora, B., Cookson, G. and Garau, M.

Consulting Report
September 2019

The Office of Health Economics

November 2018

Chalkley, M and Sussex, J.

September 2018

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