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Introduction: Health Systems, Decentralization, and Change

  • Andrea TerlizziEmail author
Chapter
Part of the International Series on Public Policy book series (ISPP)

Abstract

The aim of this chapter is to introduce the overall topic of investigation. After reviewing the literature on health system classification, the chapter provides conceptual and operational definitions of decentralization, defines change in health system decentralization, and therefore clarifies what recentralization entails. Instead of considering decentralization as the transfer of a unique block of authority and responsibility, the concept is articulated into three different dimensions: politico-legislative, administrative, and fiscal. Moreover, the chapter describes decentralization and recentralization strategies in several European health systems, and introduces key analytical concepts for the understanding of institutional continuity and change. Finally, an overview of the book is presented.

Keywords

Health systems Decentralization Recentralization National health service Institutional change Mechanisms 

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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of FlorenceFlorenceItaly

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