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Health Services and Outcomes Research

The Ph.D. program in Health Services and Outcomes Research emphasizes population-based, health services delivery, outcomes and policy research.

Health services research examines how people get access to healthcare, how much care costs and what happens to patients as a result of this care. The main goals of health services research are to identify the most effective ways to organize, manage, finance, and deliver high-quality care; reduce medical errors; and improve patient safety. (AHRQ, 2002)

Outcomes research refers to the scientific design, data collection and analysis of the end results of medical care. It focuses on quality, cost-effectiveness and the effect of treatment on quality of life in patients. Outcomes research evaluates the effectiveness of health interventions through changes in outcomes such as improvements in patient functional status, satisfaction with care and mortality. Evaluating the intended and unintended consequences of health policies is also outcomes research.

Data collected from outcomes research provide patients, healthcare providers and payers of health services information about what does and does not work in real life settings. Areas of training include: health services research, pharmacoeconomics, pharmacoepidemiology, health behavior and risk and patient reported outcomes.

Financial support: A tuition waiver, annual stipend of $25,000 and health insurance is provided competitively to full-time students.

Average time to graduation: 4 to 5 years

Program Application Requirements

Resume/CV, Statement of Purpose, 3 Letters of recommendation

Additional Application Information

A professional degree in Pharmacy (Pharm.D.), Medicine (M.D.), or a Master's degree in pharmacy administration. Students with a Master’s degree in related fields such as epidemiology, public health or healthcare administration are encouraged to apply. Students with a Master’s degree in related fields such as marketing, management, economics, psychology or sociology with a demonstrated interest or experience in healthcare may also apply. Outstanding students with a B.S. in pharmacy or pharmaceutical sciences may be considered for direct admission into the Doctoral program.

Program Application Test Requirements


Application Deadlines

Fall Deadline

February 1

Spring Deadline

Do Not Admit

Summer Deadline

Do Not Admit

English Proficiency Requirements

All applicants whose first language is not English must provide proof of English language proficiency. WVU accepts either the TOEFL or the IELTS for this purpose. Learn more about our English language proficiency requirements.

Accreditation Information

WVU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

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