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Certificate in Health Services

Key Facts

  • Distance learning supported by weekend Seminars at the IPA
  • 5 workshops over one academic year (September to April)
  • Accredited by UCD
  • Level 6 (special Purpose Award) National Framework of Qualifications
  • Commences September/October
  • The cost of the programme is €1,200 per annum (includes all matriculation and examination fees), payable in two instalments, see page 85 of the Prospectus for more details.
  • Students can continue their studies with the Diploma in Health Services Policy
  • Download Brochure| Read Key Facts Sheet


The Certificate in Health Services offers students a comprehensive overview of the Irish Health Service, health and related legislation and the current service issues affecting the key programmes and care groups. Students can expect to obtain up to date knowledge and a practical understanding of the Health Service, at national and local levels, which will contribute to their effectiveness and performance in the work environment.


This Certificate is ideally suited to:

  • Those working in the health service who need to broaden their understanding of various aspects of the service and recent changes
  • Staff from other health systems who need to understand how the Irish health system is structured and how it works
  • Those working for agencies with links to the health service (e.g. voluntary agencies, personal and social services) and who wish to familiarise themselves with the health system

Past students have included staff of all disciplines working in the Irish Health Service: medical and administrative staff, allied health professionals, nursing grades and others working within the sector.

Delivery and Duration

This programme will be delivered over one academic year.  It will commence in September and ends with examinations in April. It is delivered in a distance learning format and will require attendance at a half day introductory session and five x one day intensive tutorials.  Students will receive comprehensive course material and associated reading lists as part of a distance learning pack.

Tutorials are designed to support students and to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the course material.  This material is updated annually and incorporates all aspects of Health Services legislation and practice.

Tutorials are delivered by experienced practitioners and are offered at the IPA in Dublin and on a regional basis where demand warrants this.


This Certificate is delivered on a modular basis and covers the following topics:

  • General Policy Framework including History, 2001 Strategy, Reform Process, Legislation
  • HSE - Population Health including Statistics, Quality and Outcomes
  • HSE - NHO and PCCC including the National Hospitals' Office and PCCC - Primary Care and Care Groups
  • Corporate Services and Current Corporate Issues including Finance, HRM and IT in the health services, Office of the CEO and current corporate issues.


The IPA is a recognised college of University College Dublin (UCD).  The Certificate in Health Services is awarded by UCD and is at Level 6 (Special Purpose Award) on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).


Students can choose to complete only the Certificate programme however many of our graduates have successfully continued their studies with the Diploma in Health Services Policy. Students also have the opportunity upon completion of the Diploma in Health Services to progress to year three of the IPA’s Bachelor of Arts (Healthcare Management stream).


Assessment is continuous throughout the programme and consists of five project assignments and review through examination.

Fee, Enrolment Procedures and Admissions

The IPA's undergraduate brochure provides all this information and can be downloaded from this page.

Read Key Facts Sheet

Read the Brochure

Apply Now (application form)

Have some questions? Contact us

57-61 Lansdowne Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 | Tel: +353 1 240 3600 | Fax: +353 1 668 9135 | Registration no: 21087