Health Services Management and Policy - PhD

The American health care system is growing dramatically and now employs more professionals than any other industry in the United States. Health Services Management and Policy provides students with an understanding of the various factors affecting health care policy formation, quality of care, patient safety, financial viability of health care systems, the role of health technology, and ways of improving the delivery of care.

Health Services Management and Policy (HSMP) faculty consists of distinguished scholars, who are national leaders in the areas of health care management, health policy analysis, health services research, quality-of-care measurement and improvement, health finance and health economics. The division is growing rapidly and we are continuing to recruit new faculty to add to the breadth and depth of our expertise in all aspects of health care.


Learn more about the Public Health PhD

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Available dates

Feb. 9, 2 p.m. EST
Apr. 5, 2 p.m. EST



The HSMP division's research programs currently receive research funding from a variety of federal and state agencies, private foundations, community groups, and corporations. The affiliated Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Evaluation Studies (Center for HOPES) has numerous applied research projects in process, aimed at improving health care outcomes and the effectiveness of health care delivery.

Students admitted to the PhD degree program are assigned faculty advisors who will provide guidance throughout the program. Admittance is determined by the division, and students do not need to request assignment to a specific faculty member’s lab or research team.

The Division of HSMP offers very competitive doctoral funding. PhD students typically receive three years of financial support (tuition and stipend) and the possibility of a fourth year. Offers can vary, but often include 1-3 years of fellowship funding with no work requirement and graduate research or teaching assistantships for the remaining years.

Program of Study

The PhD-HSMP curriculum requires 50 semester credits beyond a master’s degree for a total of 80 credits. Of the 80 credits, a maximum of 30 credits may be applied to the degree, with a maximum of 20 credits applied for dissertation research. Requirements include:

  1. Major field (25 credits)
  2. Research methods (24 credits)
  3. Minor field (15 credits)
  4. Electives (5 credits)
  5. Dissertation (9-20 credits)

View sample curriculum

For detailed additional information about specific requirements, students are directed to the College of Public Health (CPH) Graduate Student Handbook and to The Ohio State University Graduate School Handbook.

Recommended Preparation

Health Sciences Management and Policy (HSMP) is highly interdisciplinary and thus prospective students come from a variety of undergraduate backgrounds including business, social sciences, physical and life sciences, and humanities. The student's record must show evidence of good analytical and communication capabilities and quantitative skills. Undergraduate courses in economics and statistics are recommended for all HSMP applicants. Most successful applicants have a Master’s degree in a related field.

Every applicant's file is reviewed as a whole. Factors such as relevant prior work experience, community service activities, leadership, and communication skill are considered. In addition, the program evaluates the applicant's motivation for and commitment to assuming a leadership role in improving the delivery and financing of health services, both as found in the applicant's statement of purpose for graduate study, and as evidenced by prior activities and experience. Applicants need to be aware that admission is competitive, and they must show evidence of strong academic performance and potential.

A record of high grades (GPA > 3.0), GRE is optional but not required, good recommendations and a strong personal statement are generally required for admission.

For information regarding application materials, test scores and codes, and decision timelines see our frequently asked questions page.

Current Students

Our current Health Sciences Management and Policy (HSMP) PhD students come from a variety of backgrounds with varying health services management and policy-related research interests.


Our HSMP alumni have a great record of placement in a variety of high-impact settings. Examples of some of these positions include:

  • Faculty in major research institutions
  • Research leaders in industry and non-profits
  • Analysts in government agencies
  • Leadership roles in large health services delivery organizations
  • Consultants and partners in large consulting firms