Health Service Modelling Associates Programme (HSMA)

Through our HSMA programme, we aim to build a culture and skills base through which simulation and modelling techniques are routinely used to support decisions within health and social care organisations. The course supports participants to use Operational Research (OR) techniques within service development and decision making.

The HSMA Programme

Who can attend? 

The HSMA programme is designed for staff based in health and social care organisations and the police service.  Associates are selected on the basis of their current role, their analytical and computer skills and experience, and the completion of our suite of training modules, as well as an evaluation of their proposed project.  

The Round 4 cohort of the HSMA Programme, which began in October 2021, includes for the first time ever health, social care and policing staff from across England.  The updated programme has over 140 hours of content, delivered online.

What will I learn? 

Associates are released for one day a week for up to 15 months from their substantive roles to undertake advanced modelling, simulation and analysis work on specific projects within their own organisations. They receive mentoring, support and training from our operational research team.

The programme is split into two phases. 

In Phase 1 (6 months), participants are taught a huge range of skills in Operational Research and Data Science via live online lectures and group exercises, including:

At any point during the programme a HSMA can register a project. By registering a project, the HSMA will receive a dedicated Slack channel that can be used to develop the project proposal, invite collaborators from the HSMA community, post updates of progress and ask for support. Phase 2 (9 months)will allow current HSMAs to undertake their Inception Project – first modelling or data science project – with access to a community of experts and regular drop in sessions for support. 

We will only be able to register and support projects that are related to the modelling and data science areas taught within the HSMA programme and are in the areas of health, social care and policing. 

Find out more

Visit the HSMA resources website to:

  • find out more about joining the programme
  • learn about becoming a mentor
  • access a range of resources including examples of recent projects
  • watch recent seminars and presentations

Applications for HSMA 6 are now closed. If you’d like to be added to our mailing list to find out about the next round of the programme, please email