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Brighton & Sussex Medical School

Healthcare Leadership and commissioning

BSMS > Postgraduate > Healthcare Leadership and Commissioning

Healthcare Leadership and Commissioning

Key facts

MSc, PGDip, PGCert

Full-time: 1 year

Part-time: 3 years

Eligible applicants: UK, EU, international

Location: University of Brighton Falmer campus, University of Sussex Falmer campus

Course Leaders: Breda Flaherty

Read Breda Flaherty's profile here >

General enquiries:

This course is validated by the University of Brighton and the University of Sussex.

Applications are now closed for 2020-21. Applications for 21/22 entry will be accepted from November 2020.

apply for the healthcare leadership and commissioning course here >

Leadership and Commissioning group having discussion

Key areas of study

  • Leadership and change management in clinical services
  • Commissioning for quality care
  • Quality, safety and service improvement in clinical services
  • Principles and practice of public health
  • Research methods and critical appraisal 
  • Economics of health and health-related behaviour

Course overview

This innovative course offers clinicians and managers the opportunity to look in depth at healthcare leadership and commissioning theory, policy and practice, combining academic research with an up-to-the minute take on current policy, structured practical projects and work-based investigations.

With an innovative blend of leadership theory, contemporary healthcare policy and active application to practice, we equip clinicians, leaders, commissioners and managers to develop their knowledge and understanding of healthcare leadership. Uniquely, we focus on clinical expertise and clinical contexts indepth, alongside research and implementing change in practice.

Elliott Sharp photo

“The MSc in Healthcare Leadership and Commissioning offered a blend of both theoretical and practical teaching across many areas. Being allowed to choose between optional modules gave me the flexibility to shape my Master’s to suit my individual interests whilst the core modules made sure I learned essential leadership and commissioning theory. Partnered to theoretical teaching was practical teaching from regional healthcare leaders who spoke about the challenges they face. The wide variety of students on this course from both clinical and non-clinical backgrounds created exciting discussions and networking opportunities that would not have otherwise been possible.” 

Elliott Sharp, MSc Healthcare Leadership & Commissioning student

Course structure

Modules are usually assessed via presentations, seminars, abstracts, posters or a 3,000 – 4,000 word written assignment.

PGCert (60 credits)

Leadership and Change Management in Clinical Services (20 credits)

Quality, Safety and Service Improvement in Clinical Services (20 credits)


One module from the core list or optional list (20 credits)

PGDip (120 credits)

PGCert modules


Commissioning for Quality Care (20 credits)

Principles and Practice of Public Health (20 credits)

Research Methods and Critical Appraisal (20 credits)


One module from the optional module list (20 credits) See below.

MSc (180 credits)

PGDip modules


One module from the optional module list (20 credits) See below.


Dissertation (60 credits)

Optional modules

Diabetes Practice in Primary Care (20 credits)

Understanding Dementia (20 credits)

Management of Long-Term Conditions in Children (20 credits)

Communication, Learning and Teaching in Health and Social Care (20 credits)

Career opportunities

This course is delivered by a multi-professional team based both within the university and in health and social care services, bringing clinicians, leaders and commissioners together from all parts of the health and care system.

We have been offering indepth academic study of healthcare leadership and commissioning at BSMS for over 10 years. Our graduates will apply their range of specialist skills to real healthcare challenges. They will conduct research and enquiry into challenges to the dominant 20th century models of healthcare and help to shape healthcare for the 21st century.

Entry requirements

Applicants will normally have clinical, managerial or leadership experience and/ or be educated to degree level. Students are normally in practice in the health and social care field. Full-time students, or students not in healthcare practice, will be identified and supported through the tutorial process.


Successful completion of at least three years’ basic medical science at a UK medical school (having gained at least 360 credits) with a guaranteed place to continue medical studies on completion of the MSc.

For international students a minimum IELTS score of 7.0 is required.

Fees and funding 

The fees listed below are the overall costs for full-time courses taken in the academic year 2020-21. Where courses are taken part-time over more than one academic year, fees are usually charged pro-rata for the modules taken during each academic year.  


UK / EU / Island students £8,262
International £15,156


UK £5,508
International £10,008


UK £2,754
International £5,004


All BSMS students on Masters courses accredited jointly by the University of Sussex and the University of Brighton are eligible to apply for University of Sussex postgraduate scholarships in 2020-21. 

Read more about fees and funding here >

Apply here

Applications are made through the University of Brighton online portal. Applications are now closed for 2020-21. Applications for 21/22 entry will be accepted from November 2020.

APPLY for the hlc course here >