Health Policy, Power and Politics: Sociological Insights

Michael Calnan
University of Kent, UK

Product Details
06 Apr 2020
Emerald Publishing Limited
176 pages - 171 x 248mm


In the context of substantial changes in health service policy and public health policy in England over the last two decades, Health Policy, Power and Politics fills an important gap by providing an up-to-date and accessible account of recent trends in health policies and a sociological analysis of why these policies have taken the shape they have. 

This book provides a theoretically informed analysis of key recent policy changes in England and how the interplay of powerful structural interests has influenced policy in health. It includes chapters on recent reforms in the NHS and the drift towards privatisation, policies aimed at enhancing public and patient involvement, the regulation of the drug industry, medicalisation and mental health policy, the role and effect of the media and recent changes in social and environmental health policy. The analysis examines the influence of the State, professional medicine, the media, commercial interests such as those of the pharmaceutical, food and fossil fuel industries, patient’s groups and the wider global environment. 

While the key focus of the book is on England, the analysis drawn on by the author comes from a plethora of policy examples in health systems in high and low to middle income countries across the world. This widened context shines a light on the influence of globalisation and highlights both the distinctive character of health policy in England, as well as the common themes it shares in a world-wide context.
Chapter 1. Continuity or Change? Organisational Developments in the National Health Service 
Chapter 2. Medical Professionalism and Its Reconfiguration 
Chapter 3. A Responsive Health Service? Patient Choice, Public Involvement and Co-Production  
Chapter 4. Rationing, Regulating and Big Pharma 
Chapter 5. Mental Health Policy and an Epidemic of Misery 
Chapter 6. Framing Health Policy in the Media 
Chapter 7. the Widening in Social Inequalities in Health but the Narrowing of Policy 
Chapter 8. Environment, Place and Health Policy

Michael Calnan is Professor of Medical Sociology at the University of Kent, UK. He is recognised nationally and internationally for his research and teaching in the field of the sociology of health, illness and health service policy.
'Professor Calnan is very well qualified to write on health policy, power and politics in the UK, in which he has a national and international reputation. This book is solidly grounded on his recent teaching and distinctively and revealingly adopts a sociological perspective in addressing several key facets of the UK policy agenda.' - Mike Saks, Emeritus Professor, University of Suffolk

‘Health Policy, Power and Politics is an excellent book ideal for students undertaking health policy modules. Effectively a course text in its own right, it draws on Michael Calnan’s years of teaching, researching and writing on and around this topic.’ - Mike Dent, Emeritus Professor, Staffordshire University

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