M3D1: Policy Agenda
There are an almost endless number of potential health issues that individuals, stakeholder and advocacy groups, and legislators may feel are important enough to consider creating health policy around. In addition, there is a long list of major health problems that could potentially be addressed with health policy. With so many competing issues, one must wonder exactly how and why certain issues make it to the top of the list. The short list of these issues that get attention and become the focus of health policy, called the “health policy agenda”, is affected by a number of factors, including personal and political opinions and tangible feasibility and economic influences.
Remember that an active discussion is the key to an interesting and engaging online course. As you engage with the questions and with others as they join in the discussion, be sure to read what has already been posted and then add substantively to the discussion. Time goes quickly, so remember to post early! The first question is opinion-based so that you can begin the discussion immediately without having completed all of your readings. You will apply your assigned readings to subsequent questions.
In this discussion, share your thoughts on why you believe certain issues make it (or not) on to the health policy agenda. Use the following questions to help shape your initial response:
What are some health issues that have received local/state/federal attention recently?
Who decides which health issues are legitimate enough to get attention and how do they decide those issues are legitimate?
Why do some seemingly very legitimate health issues not end up making it on the policy agenda?
What characteristics of the policy process might help or hinder certain issues from making it on the policy agenda?
What other forces might affect why certain issues make it on the health policy agenda?
What is the best way to decide which issues are on the health policy agenda?
Then, respond to your classmates. How did your thoughts differ from your classmate’s? What important points did your classmate raise that you could expand on? What examples could you share that would highlight the difference in thinking between you and your classmate? How does your lens (your personal experiences, background, learning, etc.) affect your thinking on this subject, and how does your lens differ from that of your classmate?
Consult the Discussion Posting Guide for information about writing your discussion posts. It is recommended that you write your post in a document first. Check your work and correct any spelling or grammatical errors. When you are ready to make your initial post, click on “Reply.” Then copy/paste the text into the message field, and click “Post Reply.”
To respond to a peer, click “Reply” beneath her or his post and continue as with an initial post.
This discussion will be graded using a rubric. Please review this rubric prior to beginning the discussion. You can view the rubric on the Course Rubrics page within the Start Here module. All discussions combined are worth 25% of your final course grade.
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