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About the Department

Health Systems, Management & Policy

Welcome to the Department of Health Systems, Management and Policy. Our department is a national leader in health services research, with a rapidly expanding faculty in areas including economics, health policy, pharmaceutical policy, management, and outcomes research. We engage in cutting edge research with an emphasis on the use of appropriate quantitative methods. Our renowned faculty have active research agendas funded by agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, Agency for Healthcare Research Quality, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, among others.

We are interdisciplinary in both philosophy and practice. We actively work with local research partners, such as Denver Health, Kaiser Permanente, the Colorado Health Outcomes Program and the University of Colorado schools of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy and Dental Medicine. Active areas of research include mental health, health insurance, health outcomes, substance abuse treatment and many other topics.

We offer the following programs:

We provide a rigorous, multidisciplinary course of study that prepares students to meet the changing demands of health care, public health, and health policy environments.  Students obtain a broad set of practical skills suitable for success as healthcare managers or policy analysts. Our emphasis is on teaching students to use data analysis tools for empirically driven decision making in areas such as quality improvement and cost control. The core curriculum covers financial management and budgeting, cost-effectiveness analysis, quantitative policy analysis, health economics, health care provider reimbursement and many other topics. 

Students may also take concentrated sets of courses in particular areas of interest. Among these areas are management – which includes strategic management, organizational behavior, leadership and public administration, among other topics – and advanced policy analysis, which covers health law, ethics, regulation and other special topics. Students may also participate in the school-wide global health certificate program (coming soon) while meeting the requirements for their HSMP MPH.

The PhD in Health Services Research is designed for students interested in advanced research. Students receive training in Health Services Research, with a set of specialized skills suitable to conducting rigorous quantitative analysis. The curriculum is designed to provide students with the methodological training to conduct applied research in health care organization, financing, and policy. The program is offered jointly with the Clinical Science doctoral program. 

Meet the Chair:

Glen Mays, PhD  

Glen P. Mays, PhD, is the chair and a professor in the Department of Health Systems, Management and Policy in the Colorado School of Public Health at CU Anschutz. On a national level, Dr. Mays is the Director of the Systems for Action Research program funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Systems for Action tests strategies for aligning delivery and financing systems for medical care, public health, and social services in ways that improve population health. 

Dr. Mays created and maintains the National Longitudinal Survey of Public Health Systems that has followed a nationally-representative cohort of U.S. communities since 1998 to examine inter-organizational and inter-governmental approaches to public health delivery and financing. 

He is also founding director of the national Public Health Practice-Based Research Networks (PBRN) program, which brings together more than 2,000 state and local public health organizations from across the U.S. to conduct applied research on innovations in public health practice. 

In the area of preparedness, Dr. Mays directs the National Program Office for the National Health Security Preparedness Index (NHSPI)​, created by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The Index identifies strengths as well as gaps in the protections needed to keep people safe and healthy in the face of large-scale public health threats, and tracks how these protections vary across the United States.

Contact Information:

Website: Dr. May's faculty profile​ 

Colorado School of Public Health

13001 E. 17th Place​
Mail Stop B119
Aurora, CO 80045


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