Moving forward monitoring of the social determinants of health in a country: lessons from England 5 years after the Marmot Review

Peter O. Goldblatt
Global Health Action, vol 9 (2016)
Published online: 25 February 2016

Abstract / Resumen:

Background: England has a long history of government-commissioned reviews of national inequalities. The latest review, the Marmot Review, was commissioned by a government headed by the same party (the Labour Party) that had introduced the National Health Service in 1948, but the review was implemented by a coalition of different parties (Conservatives and Liberal Democrats). At the same time, a government reform of health services took place, and the monitoring of the existing inequality strategy was changed.

Objectives: This paper examines the lessons that can be learned about indicators for monitoring social determinants of health inequalities from the Marmot Review and recent health inequality strategies in England.

Design: The paper provides a narrative review of key findings on the collection, presentation, and analysis of routine data in England in the past 5 years, comparing what has been learned from the Marmot Review and other evaluations of the first health inequality strategy in England.
Results: The emphasis on monitoring has progressively shifted from monitoring a small number of targets and supporting information to frameworks that monitor across a wide range of determinants of both the causes of ill-health and of health service performance. As these frameworks become ever larger, some consideration is being given to the key indicators.

Conclusions: Although the frameworks used in England for monitoring health inequality strategies have developed considerably since the first strategy began, lessons continue to be learned about how monitoring could be improved. Many of these are applicable to countries initiating or reviewing their strategies.

Keywords / Palabras clave: Health Equity, Social Determinants of Health, Health Inequalities, Social Gradient, Disaggregation of Data, Monitoring Framework, England

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