Recent Question/Assignment

Module 2: A Political Economy of Health
Learning Outcomes
By the end of this module you should be able to:
1. Discuss alternative definitions of politics; 2. Describe political dimensions of public health such as the welfare state and morality; and
3. Describe the role of health professionals engaging in the political process.
Essential Readings
The following are essential readings for this module. Internal students should ensure you have read them before attending this week's class. You can access the readings via the Reading List.
1 . Bambra, C., Fox, D. &
Scott-Samuel, A. (2005) Towards a politics of health. Health Promotion International, 20(2); 1 87-
1 93.
2. Schrecker, T. & Bambra,
C. (2015). Introduction:
Politics and Health. In How politics makes us sick: neoliberal epidemics (pp. 1-22).
Hampshire, England:
Palgrave Macmillan.
3. Denniss, R. (2021). Introduction in Econobabble : how to decode political spin and economic nonsense.
Carlton, VIC, Australia :
Redback Quarterly.
4. Denniss, R. (2021).
Language
1 .
2.
3.
4. Bambra, C., Fox, D. & Scott-Samuel, A. (2005) Towards a politics of health. Health Promotion International, 20(2); 187193.
Schrecker, T. & Bambra, C. (2015). Introduction:
Politics and Health. In How politics makes us sick: neoliberal epidemics (pp. 1-22).
Hampshire, England:
Palgrave Macmillan.
Denniss, R. (2021).
Introduction in
Econobabble : how to decode political spin and economic nonsense.
Carlton, VIC, Australia :
Redback Quarterly.
Denniss, R. (2021).
Chapter 1. The Language of Nonsense in
Econobabble : how to decode political spin and economic nonsense.
Carlton, VIC, Australia : Redback Quarterly.
Workshop Revision
Reflect (Assessment 1)
Activity 2.1: What is politics?
In the first module, we explored the idea that health was a complex phenomenon determined by many external factors beyond the individual's control. Many of these factors are in fact controlled by governments and policymakers. So when thinking about how we go about creating structural and policy change we need to consider issues around who is doing the decisionmaking and the power dynamics in play. We also know that some of the changes we want to pursue as health practitioners can be quite political or controversial in some settings. But what do we actually mean by political? In this module, we consider why an understanding of politics is so important for public health practitioners and health promoters to ensure that we are developing effective programs that will achieve sustainable outcomes.
This module's reading by Bambra et al. (2005) identified four interpretations of politics:
This module's reading by Bambra et al. (2005) identified four interpretations of politics:
• -Politics as government- art of government and the activities of the state.- -Politics as public life concerned with the conduct and management of community affairs.-
• -Politics as conflict resolution - concerned with the expression and resolution conflicts through compromise, conciliation, negotiation and other strategies.-
-Politics as power - the process through which desired outcomes are achieved in the production, distribution and use of scarce resources in all of social existence.-
The article also comments on difference between the first and last and refers to these as a topdown and a bottom-up interpretation of politics.
Reflect on the following:
1. What are the implications
the
of
areas
the
of
Activity 2.2: Welfare states
Reflect on the following with reference to the reading by
Schreker and Bambra (2015).
1. What regime of welfare state is Australia and what are its key characteristics?
2. Choose two countries identified in the article in Tables 1 .1 and 1.2. With consideration to the political context discussed in the chapter, review the changes in health outcomes for the two selected countries and what may have contributed to the changes in health outcomes.
Post your responses to the Module activities as a single thread in Module 2 on the
Discussion Board by Sunday 3pm WST. Make sure you are integrating the module concepts and readings into your responses and responding to other student posts.
Additional Resources
Reflect on the following:
1. What are the implications of these definitions for public health professionals in engaging in the 'politics of health'.
2. According to Schreker & Bambra (2015) what is the focus of a political economy approach to understanding health and how is it different to a biomedical approach to health?
Activity 2.2: Welfare states
Reflect on the following with reference to the reading by
Schreker and Bambra (2015).
1. What regime of welfare state is Australia and what are its key characteristics?
2. Choose two countries identified in the article in Tables 1 .1 and 1.2. With consideration to the political context discussed in the chapter, review the changes in health outcomes for the two selected countries and what may have contributed to the changes in health outcomes.