Health Studies (Management, Informatics, Policy)

Health Management
Health Informatics
Health Policy

New Ways of Thinking

Health care is undergoing fundamental change from solely treating acute illness to focusing on a person’s whole needs for wellness—where physical health, mental health and social supports are explored—involving a team of health care professionals, including doctors, nurses, social workers, mental health specialists and others. In this new model, health managers, information specialists and policy experts are fundamentally important to leading the change and York’s Health Studies program prepares students for careers in these dynamic fields.

"I feel empowered to challenge the status quo and to innovate and learn"
- V. Senthil (current student)

Health Beyond Medicine

Doctors and nurses rely upon health managers, information specialists and policy experts to ensure that our health care system serves our needs and is sustainable.

  • Health managers oversee systems to ensure the quality of care and services for patients.
  • Information specialists provide and analyze data that hospital executives rely upon to make decisions.
  • Policy specialists advise governments on the best ways to meet patient and broader societal needs today and in the future.

Degree Options

Health Management

Bachelor of Health Studies (BHS) Specialized Honours
With a growing population and demand for more health services, one of the fastest growing professions is that of health
care manager. In the health management program, students learn about the health system from an organizational perspective through courses that cover health management, leadership and decision-making, measuring health system performance, health finance, and integrated health systems.

Health Informatics

Bachelor of Health Studies (BHS) Specialized Honours
Computers, networks, mobile technology and apps are rapidly changing health and health
care – everything from how we communicate with our health care providers, to how we get information, to how health care professionals collect, share and use electronic information that directly affects our health. Students also learn how to analyze and evaluate information crucial to health care decision-making.

Health Policy

Bachelor of Health Studies (BHS) Specialized Honours
Political, economic, cultural, and environmental considerations all factor into how health care decisions are made. In this program, students explore health care decision-making and the role of both government and non-government organizations. Important issues are covered, including the public/private mix in health care, integrated health systems, international health systems, the influence of stakeholder groups such as the pharmaceutical industry and more.

Health Studies

Honours Bachelor of Health Studies (BHS)
Not sure if you want to focus on Health Management, Informatics or Policy in your first year? Choose Health Studies and explore all three. In addition to taking courses in management, informatics and policy, students study the breadth and depth of health and health care through a wide variety of issues and social contexts (e.g. status and disability, homelessness), including case studies in health care in the community. Societal factors that determine why some people stay healthy and others become ill are also examined such as income, stress, early life, social exclusion, work conditions, unemployment, social support, addiction, food and transportation.

Health Studies offers students the flexibility to attain a double major or do a minor in other Faculty of Health or York programs. The program also provides students with the prerequisites for postgraduate study in a professional program (e.g. medicine, law) or graduate school.

Certificates: Our certificates in Health Informatics and Health Services Financial Management provide students with the opportunity to acquire specialized knowledge and skills in these growing areas.

Prerequisites for medical and other professional schools: A Health Studies degree provides an excellent comprehensive education plus all of the prerequisite courses required for medical or other professional schools.


All students, whether in the Specialized Honours options (Management, Informatics or Policy) or the Honours Bachelor of Health Studies option, take the same core courses, including:

  • Health Management I
  • Health Informatics I
  • Health Policy: Power & Politics
  • Social Determinants of Health
  • Health Care Law
  • Health Care Ethics

Students also have the opportunity to apply their classroom learning in the community through an experiential education course, Health Studies Project Management: Field Experience (HLST 4900).

Health Studies professor talking to a student

Careers in Health Policy, Management and Informatics

With an aging and growing population and workforce, new technologies and restructured health care systems, Health Studies graduates are in demand in a variety of fields such as in health care, not-for-profit organizations, research, government and the private sector. Below are just some of the many career opportunities.

  • Health Care Manager
  • Health Systems Planner
  • Quality Performance Manager
  • Information Coordinator
  • Project Manager
  • Health Policy Researcher
  • Data Analyst
  • Health Finance Manager
  • Health Information Specialist
  • Systems Designer
  • Systems Integration Specialist
  • Software Developer
  • Health Human Resources Manager
  • Health Policy Advisor/Analyst
  • Community Health Worker
  • Health Care Consultant
  • Health Writer/ Communications Professional
  • Physician*
  • Nurse*
  • Lawyer*
  • Social Worker*
  • Teacher*

*with further postgraduate training

The demand for Health Professionals including Health Managers, Information and Policy Specialists has grown by 53% between 2007 and 2017*.
*Jobs: Hot and Not-so-hot, Higher Education Strategy Associates 2017

Health Studies Alumni

Health Studies alumni are working in health care, government, non-profit organizations, business, research and more.

Health Studies alumni Julia Health Studies alumni Shirley Health Studies alumni Brad Health Studies alumni Jennifer Health Studies alumni Sadiq

Julia Salzmann
Senior Policy Advisor,
York Region

Shirley Li
Information Coordinator, Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto,
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Brad Lang
Project Manager,
Improvement Project
Management Office,
St. Michael's Hospital
Jennifer Catton
Manager, Strategy and Quality
Joint Department of Medical Imaging,
Sinai Health Systems - Women's College Hospital
Sadiq Raji
Senior Analyst
Canadian Institute for Health Information

Contact Us

For more information about Health Studies degree programs, contact the School of Health Policy and Management at or at 416-736-5157.