Health Policy and Planning (Health Pol Plann)

Publisher: Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press (OUP)

Journal description

Health Policy and Planning blends such individual specialities as epidemiology health and development economics management and social policy planning and social anthropology into a lively academic mix that constantly stimulates and keeps readers abreast of modern international health care. Health Policy and Planning is covered by the following major indexing services:- Current Contents: Social and Behavioral Sciences EMBASE/Excerpta Medica Social Science Citation Index

Current impact factor: 3.47

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2014 Impact Factor 3.47
2013 Impact Factor 3
2012 Impact Factor 3.056
2011 Impact Factor 2.651
2010 Impact Factor 2.793
2009 Impact Factor 2.477
2008 Impact Factor 1.953
2007 Impact Factor 1.653
2006 Impact Factor 1.75
2005 Impact Factor 1.419
2004 Impact Factor 1.343
2003 Impact Factor 1.145
2002 Impact Factor 0.79
2001 Impact Factor 0.646
2000 Impact Factor 1.096
1999 Impact Factor 0.823
1998 Impact Factor 0.779

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 3.55
Cited half-life 7.20
Immediacy index 0.45
Eigenfactor 0.01
Article influence 1.33
Website Health Policy and Planning website
Other titles Health policy and planning (Online)
ISSN 1460-2237
OCLC 43257616
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Oxford University Press (OUP)

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    • The publisher will deposit in PubMed Central on behalf of NIH authors
    • Publisher last contacted on 19/02/2015
    • This policy is an exception to the default policies of 'Oxford University Press (OUP)'
  • Classification
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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The last decade of the MDG era witnessed substantial focus on reaching the bottom economic quintiles in low and middle income countries. However, the inordinate focus on reducing financial risk burden and increasing coverage without sufficient focus on expanding quality of services may account for slow progress of the MDGs in many countries. Human Resources for Health underlie quality and service delivery improvements, yet remains under-addressed in many national strategies to achieve Universal Health Coverage. Without adequate investments in improving and expanding health professional education, making and sustaining gains will be unlikely. The transition from the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), with exciting new financing initiatives such as the Global Financing Facility brings the potential to enact substantial gains in the quality of services delivered and upgrading human health resources. This focus should ensure effective methodologies to improve health worker competencies and change practice are employed and ineffective and harmful ones eliminated (including undue influence of commercial interests).
    Health Policy and Planning 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv095
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Globally 2.9 million babies die each year before reaching 28 days of life. Over the past quarter century, neonatal mortality has declined at a slower pace than post-neonatal under-five mortality: in consequence newborns now comprise 44% of all deaths to children under five years. Despite high numbers of newborn deaths, global organizations and national governments paid little attention to the issue until 2000, and resources, while growing since then, remain inadequate. This study examines the factors behind these patterns of policy attention: the delayed emergence of attention, its sudden appearance in 2000, its growth thereafter, but the dearth of resources to date. Drawing on a framework on global health networks grounded in collective action theory, the study finds that a newborn survival network helped to shift perceptions about the problem's severity and tractability, contributing to the rise of global attention. Its efforts were facilitated by pressure on governments to achieve the child survival Millennium Development Goal and by growing awareness that the neonatal period constituted a growing percentage of under-five mortality, a fact the network publicized. The network's relatively recent emergence, its predominantly technical rather than political composition and strategies, and its inability to date to find a framing of the issue that has convinced national political leaders of the issue's urgency, in part explain the insufficiency of resources. However, since 2010 a number of non-health oriented inter-governmental organizations have begun to pay attention to the issue, and several countries with high neonatal mortality have created national plans, developments which augur well for the future. The study points to two broader implications concerning how neglected global health issues come to attract attention: priority emerges from a confluence of factors, rather than any single cause; and growth in priority may depend on the creation of a broader political coalition that extends beyond the largely technically oriented actors who may first press for attention to a problem.
    Health Policy and Planning 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv092
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    ABSTRACT: The World Health Organization (WHO) has advocated the development and use of country specific Standard Treatment Guidelines (STGs) and Essential Medicines Lists (EML) as strategies to promote the rational use of medicines. When implemented effectively STGs offer many health advantages. Papua New Guinea (PNG) has official STGs and a Medical and Dental Catalogue (MDC) which serves as a national EML for use at different levels of health facilities. This study evaluated consistency between the PNG Adult STGs (2003 and 2012) and those for children (2005 and 2011) with respect to the MDCs (2002, 2012) for six chronic and/or acute diseases: asthma, arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, pneumonia and psychosis. Additionally, the potential impact of prescriber level restrictions on rational medicines use for patient's living in rural areas, where no medical officer is present, was evaluated. Almost all drugs included in the STGs for each disease state evaluated were listed in the MDCs. However, significant discrepancies occurred between the recommended treatments in the STGs with the range of related medicines listed in the MDCs. Many medicines recommended in the STGs for chronic diseases had prescriber level restrictions hindering access for most of the PNG population who live in rural and remote areas. In addition many more medicines were listed in the MDCs which are commonly used to treat arthritis, high blood pressure and psychosis than were recommended in the STGs contributing to inappropriate prescribing. We recommend the public health and rational use of medicines deficiencies associated with these findings are addressed requiring: reviewing prescriber level restrictions; updating the STGs; aligning the MDC to reflect recommendations in the STGs; establishing the process where the MDC would automatically be updated based on any changes made to the STGs; and developing STGs for higher levels of care.
    Health Policy and Planning 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv083
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    ABSTRACT: Decentralizing health services, including those for HIV prevention and treatment, is one strategy for maximizing the use of limited resources and expanding treatment options; yet few methods exist for systematically identifying where investments for service expansion might be most effective, in terms of meeting needs and rapid availability of improved services. The Nigerian Government, the United States Government under the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program and other donors are expanding services for prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV to primary health care facilities in Nigeria. Nigerian primary care facilities vary greatly in their readiness to deliver HIV/AIDS services. In 2012, MEASURE Evaluation assessed 268 PEPFAR-supported primary health care facilities in Nigeria and developed a systematic method for prioritizing these facilities for expansion of PMTCT services. Each assessed facility was scored based on two indices with multiple, weighted variables: one measured facility readiness to provide PMTCT services, the other measured local need for the services and feasibility of expansion. These two scores were compiled and the summary score used as the basis for prioritizing facilities for PMTCT service expansion. The rationale was that using need and readiness to identify where to expand PMTCT services would result in more efficient allocation of resources. A review of the results showed that the indices achieved the desired effect-that is prioritizing facilities with high need even when readiness was problematic and also prioritizing facilities where rapid scale-up was feasible. This article describes the development of the two-part index and discusses advantages of using this approach when planning service expansion. The authors' objective is to contribute to development of methodologies for prioritizing investments in HIV, as well as other public health arenas, that should improve cost-effectiveness and strengthen services and systems in resource-limited countries.
    Health Policy and Planning 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv076
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    ABSTRACT: Background: One billion children live in war-affected regions of the world. We conducted the first cost-effectiveness analysis of an intervention for war-affected youth in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as a broader cost analysis. Methods: The Youth Readiness Intervention (YRI) is a behavioural treatment for reducing functional impairment associated with psychological distress among war-affected young persons. A randomized controlled trial was conducted in Freetown, Sierra Leone, from July 2012 to July 2013. Participants (n = 436, aged 15-24) were randomized to YRI (n = 222) or care as usual (n = 214). Functional impairment was indexed by the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Scale; scores were converted to quality-adjusted life years (QALYs). An 'ingredients approach' estimated financial and economic costs, assuming a societal perspective. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) were also expressed in terms of gains across dimensions of mental health and schooling. Secondary analyses explored whether intervention effects were largest among those worst-off (upper quartile) at baseline. Results: Retention at 6-month follow-up was 85% (n = 371). The estimated economic cost of the intervention was $104 per participant. Functional impairment was lower among YRI recipients, compared with controls, following the intervention but not at 6-month follow-up, and yielded an ICER of $7260 per QALY gained. At 8-month follow-up, teachers' interviews indicated that YRI recipients observed higher school enrolment [P < 0.001, odds ratio (OR) 8.9], denoting a cost of $431 per additional school year gained, as well as better school attendance (P = 0.007, OR 34.9) and performance (P = 0.03, effect size = -1.31). Secondary analyses indicated that the intervention was cost-effective among those worst-off at baseline, yielding an ICER of $3564 per QALY gained. Conclusions: The YRI is not cost-effective at a willingness-to-pay threshold of three times average gross domestic product per capita. However, results indicate that the YRI translated into a range of benefits, such as improved school enrolment, not captured by cost-effectiveness analysis. We also outline areas for modification to improve cost-effectiveness in future trials. Trial registration: Identifier: RPCGA-YRI-21003.
    Health Policy and Planning 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv078
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    ABSTRACT: This article examines the role of components of adequate antenatal care (ANC) in disparities in birth weight between indigenous and non-indigenous women in Mexico. We estimate the potential for added weight gain among indigenous infants if their mothers received timely, frequent ( ≥4 visits) and complete ANC (≥75% of recommended processes of care). We used population-based survey data (2012; N = 6612 women 12-49). We applied quantile regression to examine heterogeneity of the association between adequate ANC, indigenous ethnicity and birth weight across quantiles of the birth weight distribution. A greater proportion of indigenous women reported a low-birth weight infant (<2.5 kg) at last delivery (14 vs 8% among non-indigenous women). Coverage of adequate ANC (timely, frequent and complete care) is lower among indigenous (59%, CI:53;65) than non-indigenous (68%, CI:66;70) women. Indigenous ethnicity is associated with a lower birth weight across quantiles of the observed birth weight distribution: between 300 g in the 0.05, 0.10 and 0.25 quantiles. Among indigenous women, greater newborn weight gains are achieved in the lowest quantiles if they have access to ≥75% of the content of ANC compared with those that did not have access: ∼180 and 260 g are gained in both quantiles 0.05 and 0.10, respectively. This means that the smallest indigenous newborns could potentially reach 2.36 kg (from 1.86 kg), close to the normal weight threshold. The frequency of ANC was positively associated with birth weight for all women but complete ANC appears to differentially affect indigenous women at the bottom of the birth weight distribution. The marginal gains obtained among indigenous newborns that received complete ANC compared with indigenous/non-indigenous newborns did not receive it, is particularly important in low-birth weight quantiles. Delivering basic processes of ANC may therefore have the potential to impact the highest risk women and help them to overcome the low-birth weight threshold. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email:
    Health Policy and Planning 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv082
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The increased demand for evidence-based practice in health policy in recent years has provoked a parallel increase in diverse evidence-based outputs designed to translate knowledge from researchers to policy makers and practitioners. Such knowledge translation ideally creates user-friendly outputs, tailored to meet information needs in a particular context for a particular audience. Yet matching users' knowledge needs to the most suitable output can be challenging. We have developed an evidence synthesis framework to help knowledge users, brokers, commissioners and producers decide which type of output offers the best 'fit' between 'need' and 'response'. We conducted a four-strand literature search for characteristics and methods of evidence synthesis outputs using databases of peer reviewed literature, specific journals, grey literature and references in relevant documents. Eight experts in synthesis designed to get research into policy and practice were also consulted to hone issues for consideration and ascertain key studies. In all, 24 documents were included in the literature review. From these we identified essential characteristics to consider when planning an output-Readability, Relevance, Rigour and Resources-which we then used to develop a process for matching users' knowledge needs with an appropriate evidence synthesis output. We also identified 10 distinct evidence synthesis outputs, classifying them in the evidence synthesis framework under four domains: key features, utility, technical characteristics and resources, and in relation to six primary audience groups-professionals, practitioners, researchers, academics, advocates and policy makers. Users' knowledge needs vary and meeting them successfully requires collaborative planning. The Framework should facilitate a more systematic assessment of the balance of essential characteristics required to select the best output for the purpose. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.
    Health Policy and Planning 08/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv079
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    ABSTRACT: Nearly 300 000 women-almost all poor women in low-income countries-died from pregnancy-related complications in 2010. This represents a decline since the 1980s, when an estimated half million women died each year, but is still far higher than the aims set in the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) at the turn of the century. The 1970s, 1980s and 1990s witnessed a shift from near complete neglect of the issue to emergence of a network of individuals and organizations with a shared concern for reducing maternal deaths and growth in the number of organizations and governments with maternal health strategies and programmes. Maternal health experienced a marked change in agenda status in the 2000s, attracting significantly higher level attention (e.g. from world leaders) and greater resource commitments (e.g. as one issue addressed by US$40 billion in pledges to the 2010 Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health) than ever before. Several differences between network and actor features, issue characteristics and the policy environment pre- and post-2000 help to explain the change in agenda status for global maternal mortality reduction. Significantly, a strong poverty reduction norm emerged at the turn of the century; represented by the United Nations MDGs framework, the norm set unusually strong expectations for international development actors to advance included issues. As the norm grew, it drew policy attention to the maternal health goal (MDG 5). Seeking to advance the goals agenda, world leaders launched initiatives addressing maternal and child health. New network governance and framing strategies that closely linked maternal, newborn and child health shaped the initiatives. Diverse network composition-expanding beyond a relatively narrowly focused and technically oriented group to encompass allies and leaders that brought additional resources to bear on the problem-was crucial to maternal health's rise on the agenda in the 2000s.
    Health Policy and Planning 08/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czu114
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    ABSTRACT: Global policy attention to tobacco control has increased significantly since the 1990s and culminated in the first international treaty negotiated under the auspices of the World Health Organization-the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). Although the political process that led to the creation of the FCTC has been extensively researched, the FCTC's progression from an aspirational treaty towards a global health governance framework with tangible policy effects within FCTC member countries has not been well-understood to date. This article analyses the role of the global health network of tobacco control advocates and scientists, which formed during the FCTC negotiations during the late 1990s, in translating countries' commitment to the FCTC into domestic policy change. By comparing the network's influence around two central tobacco control interventions (smoke-free environments and taxation), the study identifies several scope conditions, which have shaped the network's effectiveness around the FCTC's implementation: the complexity of the policy issue and the relative importance of non-health expertise, the required scope of domestic political buy-in, the role of the general public as network allies, and the strength of policy opposition. These political factors had a greater influence on the network's success than the evidence base for the effectiveness of tobacco control interventions. The network's variable success points to a trade-off faced by global health networks between their need to maintain internal cohesion and their ability to form alliances with actors in their social environment. Published by Oxford University Press in association with The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine © The Author 2015; all rights reserved.
    Health Policy and Planning 08/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv001
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Despite the growing chronic disease burden in low- and middle-income countries, there are significant gaps in our understanding of the financial impact of these illnesses on households. As countries make progress towards universal health coverage, specific information is needed about how chronic disease care drives health expenditure over time, and how this spending differs from spending on acute disease care. Methods: A 19-year panel dataset was constructed using data from the Kagera Health and Development Surveys. Health expenditure was modelled using multilevel regression for three different sub-populations of households: (1) all households that spent on healthcare, (2) households affected by chronic disease and (3) households affected by acute disease. Explanatory variables were identified from a review of the health expenditure literature, and all variables were analysed descriptively. Findings: Households affected by chronic disease spent 22% more on healthcare than unaffected households. Catastrophic expenditure and zero expenditure are both common in chronic disease- affected households. Expenditure predictors were different between households affected by chronic disease and those unaffected. Expenditure over time is highly heterogeneous and household-dependent. Conclusions: The financial burden of healthcare is greater for households affected by chronic dis- ease than those unaffected. Households appear unable to sustain high levels of expenditure over time, likely resulting in both irregular chronic disease treatment and impoverishment. The Tanzanian government’s current efforts to develop a National Health Financing Strategy present an important opportunity to prioritize policies that promote the long-term financial protection of households by preventing the catastrophic consequences of chronic disease care payments.
    Health Policy and Planning 08/2015; DOI:10.1093/heapol/czv081