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The public and public health organizations: Issues for community engagement in public health
Health Policy (2006)
  • F. Douglas Scutchfield, University of Kentucky
  • Laura Hall, University of Kentucky
  • Carol L. Ireson, University of Kentucky

Deliberative processes are beginning to take effect in the public health sector. Public health organizations have a critical role in fostering local deliberation during the planning and implementation of community health efforts. The chief executive officer (CEO) of eight national public health constituent organizations were provided background readings about deliberation and its potential role in community public health planning. They were then interviewed about their prior knowledge of public health deliberation, impressions and thoughts about deliberation's role in public health, whether they could identify constituents using the approach, and the best method of disseminating information on deliberation. Information provided by stakeholders was analyzed to gauge the understanding and implementation of public deliberation. Four main themes emerged from the interviews including: general awareness and attitudes about public deliberation, barriers to deliberation, words of caution when using the deliberative approach, and dissemination of deliberation. Each of the CEOs interviewed favored deliberative approaches in public health planning that would ensure that the community's voice is present in the decision-making process. However, there are certain limitations to the approach that must be addressed before the full benefits of public engagement can be obtained in public health.

  • Public health organizations,
  • Deliberation,
  • Community engagement,
  • Public Health Planning
Publication Date
June, 2006
Publisher Statement
Copyright © 2005 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Citation Information
F. Douglas Scutchfield, Laura Hall and Carol L. Ireson. "The public and public health organizations: Issues for community engagement in public health" Health Policy Vol. 77 Iss. 1 (2006)
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