|Assignment 2—Health policy analysis
Many of these health issues are politically contentious and involve ethical and moral questions and dilemmas. This means that deciding on the best way to approach and respond to these health issues is not always clear. Social and health policy is one of the most common ways that governments guide the approach of organisations and health care professionals in responding to particular health issues and problems. Even if you are not aware of it, social and health policy impacts on and shapes the nursing profession as well as the contexts within which nurses practice. It is imperative therefore that nurses have some understanding of how policy is used to guide the contexts and practices of health care.
This assignment requires you to analyse a health policy document from a socio-political perspective. It requires you to select one of the listed health policy documents available on FLO and to analyse it using the knowledge and understandings you have gained from the topic.Your analysis should address the following key questions:
• What is the main health area of the policy? (e.g. mental health, women’s health, etc.)
• Who are the stakeholders in the policy? (e.g. these are the people that have a stake in dealing with the problem, e.g. nurses, children, bio-ethicists, people living in poverty, the disabled, etc.—you may identify stakeholders that are not mentioned in the policy).
• What is the desired outcome/effect of the policy? Why is it important that the health issue be resolved or improved?
• What perspective does the policy take in relation to the structure-agency continuum? (i.e. does the policy focus more on the structures of society (class, gender, race, ethnicity, disability, rurality) or on the actions of individuals and particular groups?)
• What perspective does the policy take in relation to the illness/wellness continuum? (i.e. does it focus more on the treatment of the illness/problem or on the creation of wellness through prevention and early intervention?)
• What do you think the priority areas should be to effectively respond to the health issue/problem described in the policy? Do you think the policy acknowledges and includes these priority areas? Please provide evidence for your answer.