Current health policy is required to respond to a constantly changing social and political environment characterised, particularly in Europe, by ageing populations, increased migration, and growing inequalities in health and services. With health systems under increasing strain there is a sense that we need to seek new means of determining health policy. Much political debate focuses on managerial issues such as the levels of health funding and the setting and missing of targets. Meanwhile our moral imperatives, our values and principles, go relatively unexamined. What are these values? Can we agree their validity and salience? How do we manage the paradox of competing goods? Can we find new ways of talking about, and resolving, our conflicting values and competing priorities in order to create sound, appropriate, and just health policies for the 21st Century? Written by leading health policy makers and academics from many countries, "Constructive Conversations about Health" examines in depth the underlying values and principles of health policy, and posits a more enlightened public and political discourse. The book will be invaluable for those involved in health policy making and governance, politicians, healthcare managers, researchers, ethicists, health and social affairs media, health rights and patient participation groups. 'The literature on health policy is vast. On offer are models of health services, economic theory, management theory, disquisitions on ethical principles, social analyses, literally thousands of publications. In a globalised and electronically networked world, this literature has already generated its own particular language, a policy jargon replete with terms that look deceptively familiar, terms that will be much in evidence in what now follows, terms whose meanings require our closest attention.' - Marshall Marinker.
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