Information Systems Used in Health


At the end of the course the students shall be able to:
- Justify the need for evidence for the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of public health interventions and for research;
- Learn about the concepts and technical terms used in the area of health information and Public Health;
- Know, understand, define and use the concept of health indicator and at least one type of classification of health indicators,
- Build health indicators and be able to appreciate and discuss the quality and validity of data bases;
- Use information systems, databases and sources of national and international indicators, for planning, intervention, assessment and research in public health, in particular to monitor the health status, determinants and consequences of health problems;
- Apply in an integrated manner, including in new situations, knowledge, strategies and methodologies for the collection, analysis and communications.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

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Weekly - Available soon

Total - 24

Teaching language



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• Etches et al. Measuring population health. A review of indicators. Ann Rev Pub Health 2006. 27: 29-55.
• Friis RH, Sellers TA. Epidemiology for Public Health Practice. Gaithersburg, ASPEN Publishers, 1999.
• Matias Dias, C; Freitas, M.; Briz, T. Indicadores de saúde: uma visão de saúde Pública com interesse em Medicina Geral e Familiar. Revista Portuguesa de Clínica Geral (Dossier Saúde Pública), Vol 23(4): 439-450.
• Pineault, R.; Daveluy, C.: La planificacion sanitaria – conceptos, métodos, estrategias. 2ª Ed, Barcelona, Masson, S.A y Salude y Gestión, 1995.
• Weightman, A., Ellis, S., Cullum, A., Sander, L., Turley, R. Grading evidence and recommendations for public health interventions: developing and piloting a framework Health Development Agency, London, 2005.

Teaching method

- Differentiated format in accordance with the contents of each session, with period of learning sessions of theoretical exposition, and theoretical-practical sessions of analysis, debate and resolution of case studies;
- Individual resolution of worksheets on some thematic areas.
- Degree and quality of the participation in the lessons (10% evaluation);
- Group work with oral and written presentation (40% evaluation)
 - Written test of learning evaluation (50% evaluation)

Evaluation method

Available soon

Subject matter

- Evidence and public health. Sources, levels and assessment of evidence.
- The concepts of "data", "information" and "Knowledge". Its application to public health and Community Health Administration;
- Definition, types and construction of health indicators;  Data quality criteria, indicators, information and health information systems;
- Comparison of technical measures of health status and health determinants. Indicators panels;
- The main health information systems: national and international data bases and health indicators;
- Strategies for data collection and analysis in public health and Health Administration of the community, with special emphasis on epidemiological strategy.
- Data, information and knowledge in an emergency and contingency in health;
- The management and communication of information and knowledge in public health;
- Characteristics of surveillance and epidemiological investigation appropriate to the community health administrator.


Programs where the course is taught: