Master of Public Health International: A Prime Team Up

International Collaboration

The Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas (UST) through the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery (FMS) and the United Kingdom (UK), University of Leeds (UL) through its Nuffield Institute for International Health and Development is collaborating to have a ladderised program on Master of Public Health – International (MPHI). Students enroll onto Semester 1 of UL’s Postgraduate Certificate in Public Health International Programme and then continue on Semesters 2 to 4 on UST’s MPH International. Students are taught at home campus of each institution.

Objectives of the Program

By the end of the program, participants will be able to:

  • Understand better the conceptual framework around public health policy and management of health and health systems from a national and international policy context.
  • Address the causes of common diseases and evaluate different strategies for disease control and other priority health services in order to select the most effective and feasible action plans and programs.
  • Analyze issues in health policy and understand how to improve quality, accessibility and acceptability of health services using epidemiology, statistics and evidence-based public health interventions.
  • Develop community capacities for health and other sectors to manage the health risks associated with emergencies and disasters including those caused by climate change, conflicts, and natural disasters ie. earthquakes, hurricanes.
  • Design, undertake, evaluate, and commission research in different aspects of public health
  • Write and develop project proposals to fund different programs of public health
  • Work and collaborate with different stakeholders to promote health locally and internationally.
  • Engage actively with different healthcare providers, healthcare teams in hospitals and other health facilities who are involved in the provision of healthcare to different sectors of society.
  • Apply ethical principles in the day-to-day work in the public health mastery process.

Background of Institutions

UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery

UST Main Building
St. Martin de Porres Building


The UST FMS is the oldest medical school in the Philippines. The “Facultad de Medicina y Farmacia” – the beginnings of the UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery – was formally opened on May 28, 1871 by decree of the “Superior Gobierno de Filipinas”. The system of medical education became Americanized and English became the medium of instruction. Throughout its long and resplendent history, through the Spanish, American and Japanese regimes and after the Second World War, the FMS has undergone enormous changes to adjust itself to new and changing conditions. UST FMS produces over 400 medical graduates with over 95% passing rate in the National Board Examination. The faculty has been marked as the Center of Excellence in Medicine by the Philippine Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and gained the Top Medical School status in 2017. This was based on over-all board examination performance, number of examinees, top performing examiners, accreditation status and faculty-student ratio.

The changes in the past few decades have been the most dramatic, in response to the rapid advances in medicine and in medical education. These changes are as follows:

  • Improved faculty development program through international linkages and recruitment of professorial and research chairs.
  • Curricular innovations in the form of horizontal and vertical integration and the use of problem-oriented medical rounds.
  • Establishment of Health Science Research Management Group.
  • Establishment of the UST FMS Dr. Hubert Wong Learning Resources Unit.
  • Improved organizational structure with the creation of the Department of Medical Educations and Department of Bioethics.
  • Conversion of teaching to outcome-based education (OBE).
  • Establishment of its own peer-reviewed online journal—Journal of Medicine, UST.


UL Nuffield Centre for International Health and Development

The Nuffield Centre for International Health and Development has been postgraduate training programmes to the world’s health professionals since the 1970’s. It is recognized as a WHO Collaborating Centre on Research and Capacity Strengthening of Health Policy, Governance and Services, and is one of UK’s most established and successful centres for health systems research, education and teaching.

The centre has a well-established and popular portfolio of postgraduate and undergraduate courses. Alongside teaching, research carried out by the academic staff of the centre and its international partners generates new knowledge to improve the health of communities in low and middle income countries. Its capacity development work seeks to assist policy makers and other decision makers to utilise a range of methods, evidence and tools in order to improve health system functioning.

The centre has extensive international networks to facilitate dissemination of project outputs; and will contribute to the design and quality assurance of the Public Health Program, Continuous Professional Development and subsequent co-generation of new courses and content in beneficiary university UG/PG curricula, partner mentoring, and dissemination and uptake of work via external networks and stakeholders.

Programme Structure

This is an 18-month programme. The students will have four months stay at the University of Leeds in UK for completion of Introduction to Global and Public Health and Principles of Public Health in semester 1. Semester 2 and 3 will be in UST on weekend and summer classes. The subjects are: Health System Research Methods, Non-communicable Diseases, Communicable Diseases, Disaster Preparedness and Health/Climate Change, Implication of Conflicts and Emergencies Care Systems, International Health Policy: with WHO component, and Bioethics. The last (Semester 4) will be for the 6-month capstone on International Project and publication of work.

The Future of Our Graduates

The programme targets its graduate to have International employability.

Some quotes from the students of University of Leeds:

The knowledge provided by the MPH programme has certainly developed my skills to work in the field of global health. I enjoyed every day in Leeds – you can learn so much from your colleagues on the course with you as well as from the course itself.

Skills learned at Nuffield have earned me a good position with the National Primary Health Care Development Agency in my country as Programme Manager on a WHO/BMGF funded programme - Engaging the country’s Traditional Leaders on PHC delivery. Thanks to you and the Nuffield Centre.

How to Apply

The requirements for application are as follows:

  • Must have 2 years of employment experience.
  • Must have passed IELTS English Proficiency examination with a grade 6.5 and above, with no less than 6.0 in each part.
  • UK and Philippine visas

For other details please contact us at our MPH International Office:

Room 213 St. Martin de Porres Building
Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Santo Tomas
Espana, Manila, Philippines 1108
Phone: +63-2-406-1611 local 8497

CC BY: Open Access Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit