Short courses


Leading and Managing Health Innovation

  • 36 hours
  • 6 weeks


On this short course for health and healthcare managers, you'll learn how to design and embed appropriate health innovations using a human-centred approach. This will help you find effective solutions to health challenges.

Design thinking and innovation has revolutionised many industries, but effective adoption in health and healthcare has been slow.

On this six-week online course you'll learn about the human-centred approach to solving problems, and identifying the right problems to solve.

You’ll learn about a range of theories, frameworks and practices in the fields of health innovation and change management, to help you effectively design and deliver healthcare solutions.

You'll gain a well-rounded understanding of the application of health innovations, through considering everything from design thinking to the political, social and economic factors required to put innovation into practice.

This course will also help you understand how health innovations can create resilient learning organisations as a by-product of change.

Course aims

The aim of this course is to introduce you to:

  • the use of design thinking for developing health and healthcare innovations that solve human-centred challenges or problems
  • innovation and project management theories and practices, particularly relating to the implementation of new systems and thinking within organisations

Who this course is for 

This course is for managers across the health and healthcare sector.

This could include, but is not limited to:

  • clinical staff
  • policymakers
  • healthcare managers

It's also open to those from industries related to health who are at a level in their organisation where advancing their understanding of health innovation would be of value.

Course content

The course includes three modules: 

1. Health assessments

This module will help you gain the skills needed to conduct a health needs assessment. You'll also learn about approaches around health innovation and how to develop and evaluate interventions.

Using a variety of case studies, you'll learn about:

  • skills for successful collaborative leadership
  • the importance of involving policy and other stakeholders
  • translation of knowledge to population, policy and practice

2. Design thinking for health innovation

This module explores historic and current health innovation practices in the UK and other healthcare systems.

You'll learn about digital health and its impact on health ecosystems, as well as how design thinking can lead to better health innovations and cost savings. Design principles that focus on patient engagement and rapid prototyping will also help you explore solutions to current health challenges.

3. Project management

Introducing you to practical project management skills and processes, this module will equip you with the knowledge you’ll need to run projects. You'll learn a structured way to managing projects by dividing them into management stages, and gain an understanding of agile project management.

Teaching and structure 

You'll study each of the 3 modules over two weeks, spending approximately 10 to 12 hours on various activities including:

  • watching live online lectures and pre-recorded videos
  • reading
  • taking part in discussion forum activities
  • completing marked project assignments

There'll be a weekly live online session with the course lead that all students may attend.

Assessment, certificates and accreditation

You'll receive a certificate of completion and CPD points awarded by The CPD Certification Service when you've completed all the marked assignments for each of the three modules. These include mandatory discussion forums, short written assignments and a final project.

You'll also be able to assess how you're doing throughout the course by completing multiple choice quizzes and unmarked self-reflection exercises.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, you should be able to:

  • understand the need for design thinking in healthcare settings
  • use design thinking to develop health and healthcare innovations that solve human centred challenges or problems
  • understand theories of change, innovation management and project management, particularly in relation to the implementation of new systems and thinking within organisations
  • identify problems in healthcare settings, find solutions, rapidly prototype solutions and design ways for scaling and implementing the change
  • put into practice different frameworks for project management, with an understanding of the difference between traditional project management and agile methodology

Entry requirements 

You must be fluent in English.

We recommended you have a degree or interest in health innovation.

Cost and concessions

The standard fee for this course is £1,800.

If you work for the NHS or in a ministry health role, you may be eligible for a 20% discount. Please contact us at shortcoursesgbsh@ucl.ac.uk to see if this reduction applies to you.

Course team

Professor Michelle Heys

Professor Michelle Heys

Michelle is a child and adolescent global population health scientist, digital health expert and a clinically active paediatrician. She has over 12 years of global experience in clinical paediatrics (3 years in public health, and over 3 years in a research post for her MD(Res)).

Michelle is the Principal Investigator for the NeoTree project. This is a co-produced eHealth solution to improve quality of care for sick and vulnerable newborns, reducing neonatal mortality in resource poor settings.

Course information last modified: 30 Nov 2022, 16:01