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Governance and management of public health programmes 

Governance and management of public health programmes
Chapter:
Governance and management of public health programmes
Author(s):

Diana Bontá

and Meredith Cagle

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199218707.003.0047
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date: 12 December 2017

Societies must have a system and capacity in place to carry out essential public health functions. This system comprises public health’s infrastructure and is directed by governance and management of public health services. Together, governance and management work to achieve the core public health functions. Governance and management are also challenged to address social injustice issues and must work to eliminate the root cause of health inequities. Worldwide, public health systems exist with varying degrees of governance structure. Whether the system is robust and well developed or fragmented and limited, good governance can help societies and the public health organizations within them effectively fulfil their mission and provide services that are responsive to community needs. Conversely, poor governance can lead to corruption, resulting in losses of public funds and challenges to service delivery, access, and quality of healthcare. Public health management serves as the intersection between the governance structure and the actual work activities conducted within the system. Various theories have been developed to describe the work and skills of managers. Public health management is challenged to apply the unique characteristics of general managerial concepts within the nonprofit arena. Bridging the gaps in governance and management of public health systems is a challenge facing health systems worldwide. Regardless of government and management strategies, ultimately public health leaders must strive to ensure that the practical aspects needed in public health practice are not overlooked.

This chapter describes the application of governance and management of public health programmes at local, state, national, and international levels and provides both theoretical models and practical examples of their application. Its primary focus is on governance and management of public health programmes within the United States.

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