Thomas Jefferson University

Health Policy

Program Length

1 - 2 Years

Program Format


Program Audience

Health/Healthcare Professionals


Rolling Admission

Health Policy explores the advancement and implementation of health law, regulations, or voluntary practices that influence systems development, organizational change, and individual behavior to promote improvements in health.

Program Features

  • 100% online with no in-person or synchronous learning requirements
  • Accelerated 7-week semester format tailored to working professionals
  • Courses taught by expert practitioner faculty who bring extensive real-world experience to the classroom
  • Complete a graduate certificate in one year or a master’s degree in two years while taking just one course at a time

Our health policy program is tailored to working professionals, preparing graduates to assume key roles in policy development and advocacy. The program takes a deeply applied approach to health policy, emphasizing the knowledge and skills needed on the job. 

Program Options & Tracks

The health policy program has two degree options and the master's degree has two tracks. All coursework is 100% online, and uses an accelerated semester format specifically designed for working professionals. This enables students to focus on one set of skills at a time, but still graduate at the same pace as a traditional graduate degree program. 

Graduate Certificate

The Graduate Certificate focuses on the foundations of policy-driven solutions to population health improvement. This option contains five online courses, and can be completed in one year.

Master's Degree

The Master of Science (MS) degree builds upon the foundational concepts presented in the Graduate Certificate, and prepares graduates to be health policy leaders who possess advanced analytic and advocacy skills for problem identification and actionable policy solutions and implementation.

Master's Degree Tracks

Our program offers options for students to focus on health policy principles in the U.S. or in different environments around the world.

U.S. Health Policy 

Students planning to practice in the United States will learn the unique landscape of health policy decision-making in the U.S., and be able to develop, analyze, and advocate for comprehensive policy solutions that can address population health problems. 

Global Health Policy

Students wishing to practice outside the United States will learn how health and healthcare services are organized, financed, and delivered in other countries, and will develop advanced analytical skills needed to drive policy-oriented solutions to population health problems around the world. 

Program Outcomes

Graduates of our Health Policy program are able to:

Graduate Certificate

  • Identify the inter-relationship among key stakeholders in U.S. health and health care, including health care delivery systems, public health, financing systems, advocacy organizations, and the political system, with a focus on policy-making bodies.
  • Examine the influence of social, economic, behavioral and political factors on health outcomes.
  • Explore the general theoretical principles of economics and their application in the healthcare sector.
  • Understand the legal, legislative and regulatory process that influence health policy development, implementation, and financing.
  • Understand the role of information systems and data analysis in the policy-making process.

Master’s Degree (above plus)

  • Design, conduct and evaluate health policy briefs, statements, analyses and research.
  • Apply data driven analytical skills to identify problems, model solutions and predict outcomes.
  • Develop system-wide approaches that consider market forces and multiple stakeholder positions in the development of actionable policy solutions.
  • Develop competencies in multi-sector collaboration.
  • Explore approaches to developing and financing policies to address the social determinants of health.
  • Select and integrate information systems and technology to support decision-making and workflow within and across settings and sectors.
  • Learn effective approaches to communication and dissemination of information and data.
  • Apply advanced management and leadership skills to develop policies that manage costs of health care and that improve access, quality and safety.

Program Audiences

This program is ideally suited to prepare professionals to work in the range of environments where health policy is a priority:

  • Community-based health advocacy and service organizations. 
  • Public health officials and governmental employees working at local, state, or federal levels
  • Professionals working in organizations involved in the delivery, administration, or financing of healthcare
  • Human resource professionals in large employer organizations
  • Foundations, non-profits, and other funders seeking to impact health policy at the local and national levels
  • Professional associations and other organizations representing members working to improve population health


Graduate Certificate

  • HPL 500: U.S. Healthcare Organization & Delivery
  • POP 500: Essentials of Population Health
  • HPL 504: Health Law and Regulatory Issues
  • HPL 505: Legislative, Executive, and Regulatory Processes
  • HPL 506: Health Policy Analysis and Development

Master's Degree: U.S. Health Policy Track

  • HPL 511: Policy Approaches to Addressing Social Determinants of Health
  • HPL 512: Medicare and Medicaid
  • HPL 513: Effective Communication and Dissemination of Data
  • HPL 520: Practice-Based Health Statistics
  • HPL 650: Capstone Seminar and Project
  • General Elective

Master's Degree: Global Health Policy Track

  • HPL 513: Effective Communication and Dissemination of Data
  • HPL 515: Refugee and Migrant Health
  • HPL 516: Delivering Health Services in Resource-Limited Countries    
  • HPL 520: Practice-Based Health Statistics
  • HPL 650: Capstone Seminar & Project  
  • Global Health Elective

Admissions Considerations

We review applications using a holistic perspective that carefully considers all available information without imposing specific minimums on any individual requirement. In general, we look for:
  • A prior GPA of with approximately GPA of 3.0 or higher in undergraduate or graduate coursework;
  • Competitive standardized test scores near or above the 50th percentile (a waiver is available);
  • An articulate application essay;
  • A resume/CV that demonstrates a trajectory consistent with, or shows promise for, success in the applicant's chosen degree program; and
  • Recommendation letters attesting to the applicant's ability to be successful in the program.

Ultimately, we look for applicants who have a passion for the work and the ability to successfully complete the program. 

901 Walnut Street, 10th Floor   
Philadelphia PA 19107
1-888-71-APPLY (27759)