In March 2021, we at the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) – Health Technology Assessment Unit had the opportunity to participate in a short course on Advanced Modelling for Economic Evaluations using Excel, organized jointly by the National University of Singapore – Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health and Health Intervention and Technology Assessment Program (HITAP). The course included a mix of asynchronous learning through pre-recorded lectures and online quizzes, and live sessions where important points from the lessons were discussed and participants were allowed to break into small groups to experience firsthand how to conduct economic modelling in Excel. Indeed, this short course was the perfect balance of theory and practice.

The pre-recorded lectures and the discussion of quizzes gave us a solid foundation to be able to follow the live workshop sessions with ease. While the course was not designed to turn us into experts within two weeks, it enriched us with lessons that we can apply in practice. The workshops helped us become more confident in conducting economic modelling for our future projects in the DOH. From the live sessions, we learned the important parameters, assumptions, and considerations to note in the model as well as in the analyses. Having hands-on experience greatly reinforces the concepts and theories taught, allowing us to further enhance the skills needed in an economic evaluation.

Given the limitations of the pandemic, it was a bit challenging to build a network among the participants. However, the teaching assistants and the organizers were able to deliver the sessions in an interactive manner. Likewise, it was interesting to work and learn from individuals discussing their own country’s health system (i.e., characteristics, structures, etc). We are looking forward to having more of these well-designed sessions in the future.

Blog on this course from other participant please click here.