January 17, 2013

The outcomes and the process in health policy

The tobacco ban in Spain: how it happened, a vision from inside the government

Politicians and high level officials often complain about the constraints of the political process. Once they have set up a clear goal, the outcome is subject to a process that it is out of their control. Rather than considering such fact as a failure, this is only a fact that sometimes may happen and others not. The case of tobacco legislation is an interesting political proces that you can check at the latest issue of Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. Ildefonso Hernández, the former Director General de Salud Pública explains his experience with enacting a law that has had and it is still having strong impact on tobacco consumption and health.
If you want to have a whole picture of the political process in general, I would suggest you this recent book published by the World Bank: Understanding Policy Change. It covers all the critical issues of the political process. A must read for potential politicians and those to blame for policy and politics.