Module - Introduction to Public Health Policy, Practice and Professionalism (SBI201)

STP

Aim of this module

The aim of this rotation is to introduce trainees to the development of public health policy, practice and professionalism. This module will provide the trainee with an introduction to how public health policy is developed, published, implemented and the impact monitored and aligned to the UK public health framework. They will apply their knowledge as they use their skills of critical review and analysis to identify the strengths and weaknesses of current policy and the challenges and solutions to successful implementation.

Work-based learning outcomes


  1. Select and analyse a public health policy using the UK public health framework and critically appraise the knowledge base underpinning the development of the policy.
  2. Critically review the challenges in implementing this public health policy.
  3. Develop and implement (in part or whole) an evaluation plan for a particular public health policy.
  4. Present a summary report of your findings and present it to colleagues, justifying conclusions and recommendations.

Work-based Competencies


Learning outcome Title Knowledge
1 1

Identify a contemporary public health policy to examine.

  • Policy and strategy development life cycles.
  • Relevant current health and care policies and the associated strategies.
  • Strategy analysis methodologies (such as SWOT, PEST and Four Corners, etc.).
  • Context
  • Content
  • Processes
  • Actors (stakeholders).
  • Current issues in public health, e.g. obesity, liver disease, ageing, antimicrobial resistance, tuberculosis, climate change, migrant health.
  • How evidence is used to inform and influence public health policy:
    • introduction to evidence synthesis and hierarchy of evidence
    • translation of evidence into policy and practice.
2 1

Research the evidence for the need for your chosen public health policy.

  • How the knowledge base is used to identify current key issues in public health and inform policy.
  • Introduction to key sources of public health data.
  • Measures of health, including burden of disease and mortality.
  • Health needs assessment.
  • Evaluation of public health policy and practice.
  • Roles of organisations such as National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), Cochrane.
  • How global policies and initiatives influence UK public health policies.
3 1

Analyse the context of the policy.

  • The relative merits and disadvantages of individual and population approaches to improving public health:
    • prevention: primary, secondary, tertiary.
    • prevention paradox (Rose hypothesis).
  • Epidemiological basis to preventive strategies: high risk vs population strategies.
4 1

Analyse the factors that have been involved in making the policy.

  • The relative merits and disadvantages of individual and population approaches to improving public health:
    • prevention: primary, secondary, tertiary.
    • prevention paradox (Rose hypothesis).
  • Epidemiological basis to preventive strategies: high risk vs population strategies.
5 1

Appraise and critically review the role of stakeholders and stakeholder engagement in policy making within public health.

  • Stakeholder engagement analysis and profiling.
  • Stakeholder engagement plans and strategy development and its implementation – benefits and challenges.
  • Management of and communication with stakeholders.
  • Engagement and inclusion methods and approaches.
  • Stakeholder impact on commissioning and delivery of (informatics) services.
  • Critical appraisal and comparison with other available/accessible strategies.
  • Engaging and including vulnerable and hard-to-reach groups and individuals.
6 2

Critically review the literature to analyse:

  • the legislation under which public health policy has been implemented;
  • the public health bodies and patients/patient groups involved in implementation;
  • key levers for successful implementation or barriers where the policy has not been a success.
  • Major theoretical models of policy implementation, including the gap that can be demonstrated between what was planned and what actually occurred as a result of a policy:
    • top-down approach
    • bottom-up approach
    • principal-agent theory (relationship between those who define policy and those who implement policy)
    • interpretation: translation of the policy into administrative directives
    • organisation: establishment of administrative units and methods necessary to put a programme into effect.
  • The process of implementation of national public health policy:
    • legislative framework
    • levers
    • the challenges and barriers to successful implementation
    • the role of public health bodies in reducing health inequalities.
  • The process of implementation of local public health policy:
    • local arrangements within the relevant country, e.g. local authority tiers
    • levers
    • the challenges and barriers to successful implementation
    • how to engage local communities, including the public, voluntary and charitable sectors.
7 2

Critically appraise the development and implementation of a health policy, including the identification of key success factors.

  • Range of potential success factors.
  • The selection of appropriate success factors to be used.
  • Challenges in the assessment of success factors.
  • Critical appraisal.
8 3

Evaluate public health policy.

  • Contents of an implementation plan.
  • How to measure the quality and appropriateness of the success factors in measuring the impact of the public health policy.
  • Limitations of success factor, methods of evaluation appropriate for policy and its applications for different types of policy.
  • The scientific principles and key questions that are common to all evaluations.
  • Health economics.
9 3

Develop and implement a plan for evaluation of a particular policy, exercising professional judgement.

  • Identifying measures from the literature and practice that are, and are not, amenable to measurement within a specific context.
  • Developing a consensus for the evaluation and the plan.
  • Delivering the evaluation.
  • How to assess the impact of public health policy on patient safety, patient care and health outcomes.The importance of being able to be able to practise as an autonomous professional and exercise professional judgement.
10 3

Confirm through consultation that the evaluation success factors are appropriate.

  • Identifying measures from the literature and practice that are, and are not, amenable to measurement within a specific context.
  • Developing a consensus for the evaluation and the plan.
  • Delivering the evaluation.
  • How to assess the impact of public health policy on patient safety, patient care and health outcomes.The importance of being able to be able to practise as an autonomous professional and exercise professional judgement.
11 3

Present a summary report to colleagues, justifying conclusions and recommendations. 

Discuss:

  • key barriers to implementation
  • solutions for implementation
  • evaluation of the policy.
  • The role of communication in enabling a range of audiences to understand how the public health function leads to health gain:
    • how to identify the range of stakeholders and audiences
    • the concept of health gain.
  • Report writing for a scientific and lay audience.
  • Structuring, delivering and evaluating an oral presentation.
  • How to answer questions.
  • Types of questions.
  • The approaches to effective communication with other health professionals and policy makers:
    • verbal and non-verbal communication skills
    • written communication skills
    • components of good team working
    • barriers to effective communication.
  • Benefits of good communication.
  • Personal responsibility and the importance of being able to justify decisions.

Work-based assessment


Complete 1 Case-Based Discussion(s)
Complete 1 of the following DOPS and/or OCEs
Type Title