Governing Health: The Politics of Health Policy

Overview

Despite widespread perceptions to the contrary, health care reform in the United States has blossomed since 1965 -- molded in large part by changes in the nation's chief political institutions. But until now, there has been little attempt to look at health care policymaking from a long-term political perspective. Governing Health does just that.

Drawing on political science research on the institutions of government and the policy process, Governing Health explains how health ...

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Overview

Despite widespread perceptions to the contrary, health care reform in the United States has blossomed since 1965 -- molded in large part by changes in the nation's chief political institutions. But until now, there has been little attempt to look at health care policymaking from a long-term political perspective. Governing Health does just that.

Drawing on political science research on the institutions of government and the policy process, Governing Health explains how health policy is made. It describes how the Congress, the president, special interest groups, bureaucracy, and state governments affect the process of defining health policy problems and finding politically feasible solutions. It also provides an extensive review of the policies that have governed health care for a generation or more, starting with the passage of Medicare in 1965 and continuing through the national health care debate of 1993-94.

The book contains black-and-white illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Nancy Milio
This is a political science book that presents a comprehensive synthesis and analysis of the institutions and process of healthcare policymaking. It is based on a review and assessment of the literature and on some original research on the changes in healthcare policymaking over the last 50 years, through the mid-1990s. It includes a comparison of Federal and state policymaking and concludes with a prognosis for healthcare reform. The purpose is to provide a text written by political scientists for use in health politics courses. The authors are well-qualified, having done extensive and recognized research in healthcare policymaking. The book is appropriate for many audiences interested in understanding and acting in healthcare policy arenas. The book has a moderate number of charts, tables, and boxes that synthesize the text. It also has an extensive, 23-page bibliography and a list of acronyms. The font is rather small. This text provides interested audiences with as much useable detail and insight as they would need for applied purposes in the fields of health policy analysis, action, and education. It should prove a lasting reference for several years for theoretical and practical purposes in healthcare policy arenas as they now move between Federal and state governments, between public and private sectors, between elected officials and private interest groups, both commercial and voluntary, professional and public interest. The changing impact of the AMA over 50 years is among the policy influences that are highlighted.
From The Critics
Health policy, like all exercises in politics, is about the wielding of power, note Carol Weissert (political science, Michigan State U.) and William Weissert (health management and policy, U. of Michigan). They present the history of U.S. health care policy as the product of the American system of government, combining ideological polarization and party politics, the dynamics of congressional needs for reelection and vote-trading, the discretionary power of the bureaucracy in its dealings with government and the public, the well- financed influence of health interests, and the budget and reconciliation process. Their work is divided into two sections that first describe the institutions of government and the interactions of structures and motivations and then explore the actual policy process itself. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Booknews
Presenting health care policy as the product of the American system of government, this volume provides a synthesis of political science research on the institutions of government and the policy process, and an extensive review of the policies that have governed health care for a generation or more. Paper edition (unseen), $24.95. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Nancy Milio, PhD, FAAN, FAPHA (University of North Carolina Chapel Hill School of Public Health)
Description: This is a political science book that presents a comprehensive synthesis and analysis of the institutions and process of healthcare policymaking. It is based on a review and assessment of the literature and on some original research on the changes in healthcare policymaking over the last 50 years, through the mid-1990s. It includes a comparison of Federal and state policymaking and concludes with a prognosis for healthcare reform.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide a text written by political scientists for use in health politics courses. The authors are well-qualified, having done extensive and recognized research in healthcare policymaking.
Audience: The book is appropriate for many audiences interested in understanding and acting in healthcare policy arenas.
Features: The book has a moderate number of charts, tables, and boxes that synthesize the text. It also has an extensive, 23-page bibliography and a list of acronyms. The font is rather small.
Assessment: This text provides interested audiences with as much useable detail and insight as they would need for applied purposes in the fields of health policy analysis, action, and education. It should prove a lasting reference for several years for theoretical and practical purposes in healthcare policy arenas as they now move between Federal and state governments, between public and private sectors, between elected officials and private interest groups, both commercial and voluntary, professional and public interest. The changing impact of the AMA over 50 years is among the policy influences that are highlighted.

4 Stars! from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801868467
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/2002
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Carol S. Weissert is Collins Eminent Scholar and chair of Civic Education and Political Science at Florida State University. William G. Weissert is a professor of political science at Florida State University and a professor emeritus at University of Michigan School of Public Health.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
I Health Policy and Institutions
1 Congress 15
2 The Presidency 72
3 Interest Groups 110
4 Bureaucracy 154
5 States and Health Care Reform 192
II Health and the Policy Process
6 The Policy Process 245
7 Applying Theory to Reality: The Case of the Balanced Budget Act 281
Conclusion 318
List of Abbreviations 329
References 331
Index 361
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