Public involvement policies in health: exploring their conceptual basis

Health Econ Policy Law. 2006 Apr;1(Pt 2):149-62. doi: 10.1017/S174413310500112X.


Despite its obvious appeal, the concept of public involvement is poorly defined and its rationale and objectives are rarely specified when applied to current health policy contexts. This paper explores some of the underlying concepts, definitions, and issues underpinning public involvement policies and proposes a set of criteria and questions that need to be addressed to allow for the evaluation of public involvement strategies and their impact on the health policy process. It aims to further our understanding of the role that public involvement may play in contributing to health systems that are responsive to the needs and priorities of the public, and, ultimately, providing better health and health care services to the community at large.

MeSH terms

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Community Participation*
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Health Policy*
  • Humans
  • Policy Making*
  • United Kingdom