PUBH 3003 Contemporary Issues in Public Health

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 401194

Coordinator Catharine Fleming Opens in new window

Description This unit focuses on contemporary issues in public health. These priority concerns include chronic and age-related disease, communicable disease, mental health, sexual and reproductive health, child and maternal health, indigenous health, migrant health and environmental health. You will bring together your knowledge in public health, epidemiology, sociology and economics to identify and evaluate social and environmental factors that affect these health issues. By evaluating effectiveness of current public policy you will make recommendations for policy and program development to improve outcomes for contemporary health issues. These topics will be explored in national and international contexts.

School Health Sciences

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 2 10cp

Check your HECS Band contribution amount via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Pre-requisite(s) PUBH 2016 AND
PUBH 2010

Assumed Knowledge

Fundamentals of public health, social determinates of health and the Australian health care system; and the fundamentals of epidemiology.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:
  1. Identify and evaluate the relative contributions of economic, social and environmental factors affecting health in the contemporary world.
  2. Compare and contrast contemporary health issues in national and international contexts.
  3. Examine how epidemiology and big data shapes policy decisions and contributes to evidence-based public health practice in the contemporary era.
  4. Analyse the different roles/approaches to public health intervention to address contemporary health issues.
  5. Critically appraise the effectiveness and role of public health policy in the contemporary era using evidence-based practice.
  6. Hypothesise public health intervention (policy or program) to improve outcomes for a contemporary health issues.

Subject Content

1. Epidemiology
2. Chronic disease and ageing
3. Communicable disease
4. Mental health
5. Sexual and reproductive health
6. Maternal and child health
7. Indigenous health
8. Migrant health
9. Environment and health
10. The changing face of public health and future practice considerations


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Item Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Tutorial Participation 10 consecutive weekly one hour tutorial classes. 10 N Individual
Literature Review: Contemporary public health issue literature review on selected topic 1,000 words 30 N Individual
Applied Project: Contemporary public health policy or project development 2,000 words 40 N Individual
Video Presentation 10 minutes 20 N Individual

Prescribed Texts

  • Sim, F., McKee, Martin, ProQuest, MyiLibrary, & Ebooks Corporation. (2011). Issues in public health (2nd ed., Understanding public health). Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Teaching Periods

2022 Semester 1



Subject Contact Catharine Fleming Opens in new window

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2022 Trimester 1

Sydney City


Subject Contact Andrey Zheluk Opens in new window

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2022 Trimester 3

Sydney City


Subject Contact Andrey Zheluk Opens in new window

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Structures that include subject