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FREE online training course – A framework for analyzing public policies

Constructing a Logic Model for a Healthy Public Policy: Why and How?
669 K

A Framework for Analyzing Public Policies – Practical Guide
643 K

Method for Synthesizing Knowledge About Public Policies
  323 K

What Works for Health: Policies and Programs that can Improve Health  - A directory of short descriptions of different public policies. Each summarizes the data about the policy's effectiveness and provides a few indications about its implementation and its impact on inequalities. On the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps site (USA).

Prevention Policy Directory. A regularly updated, searchable inventory of Canadian policies as well as legal instruments (legislation, regulations, codes). The Directory is on Cancerview Canada.

How can the health equity impact of universal policies be evaluated? Insights into approaches and next steps
6.26 MB. Milton, B., et al. (Eds.) (2011). On the site of the World Health Organization. 

Practitioner opinions on health promotion interventions that work: Opening the “black box” of a linear evidence-based approach. Kok, M., et al. (2012). Social Science and Medicine, 74, 715-723. doi:10.1016/j. socscimed.2011.11.021   Abstract on the site PubMed.

Assessing equity in systematic reviews: realising the recommendations of the Commission on Social Determinants of Health. Tugwell, P., et al. (2010). BMJ 2010; 341: bmj.c4739. On the site of the BMJ.

Real world reviews: A beginner's guide to undertaking systematic reviews of public health policy interventions. Bambra, C. (2009). Abstract available on the site the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. doi:10.1136/jech.2009.088740 

Conceptualizing and Combining Evidence for Health System Guidance.  By Lomas, J., et al. (2005). Canadian Health Services Research Foundation (CHSRF). On the site of the CHSRF

Systematic reviews in social policy: To go foward, do we first need to look back? By Pearson, M. 2007. In Evidence & Policy : A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice, 3 (4) pp. 505-526. Abstract on the site of ingentaConnect.

Florence Morestin

Example 6: Embedding the Framework Within an Organizational Policy Development and Decision-Making Tool
July 2018. Description.
An example presented by:
Cora Janzen, in motion Consultant, Population and Public Health, former Saskatoon Health Region
Dr. Julie Kryzanowski, Deputy Medical Health Officer, Population and Public Health, former Saskatoon Health Region
Jill Aussant, Public Health Nutritionist, Population and Public Health, former Saskatoon Health Region
Carolyn Chu, Senior Public Health Nutritionist, Population and Public Health, former Saskatoon Health Region
Tanya Dunn-Pierce, Health Promotion Department Manager, Population and Public Health, former Saskatoon Health Region

Context of use

The former Saskatoon Health Region is now part of the Saskatchewan Health Authority which includes Population and Public Health (PPH) as well as a variety of healthcare services and portfolios. The Health Promotion Department (HPD) is within PPH, and our intent was to create a policy development and decision-making tool for our management team (which currently consists of a Manager and Medical Health Officer (MHO) dyad) and staff to vet and prioritize options for working on healthy public policy. PPH previously developed and currently uses a policy framework (i.e., PPH Policy Framework). HPD's Policy Development and Decision-Making Tool (also known as the vetting tool) integrates the PPH Policy Framework and assists our staff and management to determine the connection of the policy direction being considered to achieve PPH's and HPD's goals in relation to the context of our work priorities.
The NCCHPP framework is also embedded within the HPD's Policy Development and Decision-Making Tool and enables staff to identify and describe the policy direction they recommend (based on the analysis of the six dimensions) to the Manager/MHO dyad for their approval.

Adaptations made

We did not adapt the NCCHPP's analytical framework. However, we use it in conjunction with other resources and tools:

1) As our staff work with the HPD Policy Development and Decision-Making Tool they are encouraged to apply the PPH Policy Framework and consider the following factors:

  • How the policy being considered aligns with the department's priorities and approaches;
  • How the policy connects to PPH's health status reports and Chief MHO Calls to Action;
  • How the policy aligns with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action;

2) Other suggested tools for practitioners such as:

Data collection methods

We have not used the NCCHPP's framework in our day to day work yet.  It does look like a thorough framework and we anticipate that we will collect data to analyze the policy directions and options when working through our vetting tool. We anticipate that we will use group brainstorming, consultation with experts and deliberative processes most often.
Lessons learned

We familiarized ourselves with the NCCHPP's framework by reading the Practical Guide and completing the Online Course. It is a helpful tool to conceptualize the dimensions of policy development.  We really liked the combination of analysis related to the effectiveness of the policy as well as the considerations for implementation and strategy development (for instance, feasibility).
Our recommendation for public health colleagues would be: use the NCCHPP's framework in a way that fits your organization. We integrated it into our vetting tool to add another layer of analysis. 

Impact on public policies, programs and/or interventions

We are at the early stages of implementing the HPD Policy Development and Decision-Making Tool. A workshop for HPD staff was conducted to orient the staff to the tool and have them work through using the tool with policies related to their areas of work. Feedback was collected from staff, and the tool, along with the standard work document, is now ready for implementation.

Next steps
  • Trialing a few policies using the policy vetting tool (e.g., Complete Streets and Respectful Workplace policy);
  • Feedback from Managers;
  • Once approved, guiding staff to know about the tools contained within the HPD Policy Development and Decision-Making Tool such as the NCCHPP analytical framework.

To learn more
The production of the NCCHPP website has been made possible through a financial contribution from the Public Health Agency of Canada.