Providing an introduction to the way health policies are made and who influences them, this book combines a comparative analytical framework for understanding health policy with a wide range of examples of actual policy choices from North and South. In its exploration of power, the book focuses on the role of the state in the context of interest groups and other actors. It looks at the nature of political systems and the extent to which participation is encouraged. It also explores issues of global influence, asking how far the North shapes health policies in the South. In its exploration of processes, the book asks how issues get on to the policy agenda, what the processes of formulation are and who the influential actors are.
'Gill Walt approaches health policy from the perspective of actors and processes. This makes her book extremely useful to health policy makers, administrators, health workers and academics. She provides a well written analysis of how health policies are developed. There is nothing comparable for those teaching on health policy and Walt has done us all a great service by filling this notable gap.'
Judith Justice, School of Medicine, Univesity of California at San Francisco
'Anyone who thinks that health policy is simply a matter of finding the best way to improve health should read this thoughtful and readable book which is illustrated with fascinating examples drawn from real life.'
Brian Abel-Smith, London School of Economics and Political Science
'Health systems in many countries, both developing and the more developed, are undergoing major reforms. More than ever, all those involved in health need to understand how health policies are being formulated, adopted and implemented. This clearly written book, with its excellent examples and explanatory text, helps us to understand and analyse the complicated processes involved. It should prove equally valuable to health workers, managers and academics.'
Patrick Vaughan, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
'Up to now there has been no single book concerning the study of the health policy process. Gill Walt provides the tools with which to analyse it. I shall certainly use her book for teaching health planners and managers from both developed and developing countries.'
Carol Barker, Nuffield Institute for Health, Leeds