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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


BORRELL, Carme et al. Socieconomic inequalities and health plans in the Autonomous Communities of Spain. Gac Sanit [online]. 2005, vol.19, n.4, pp.277-285. ISSN 0213-9111.

Objective: To systematically examine sensitivity to socioeconomic (SE) inequalities in the policies formulated in the health plans of the Autonomous Communities of Spain. Methods: We performed a systematic review of 14 health plans. The introductory content of the health plans was called the «symbolic content» and was separated from specific interventions, or «operative content». The symbolic content was analyzed through the presence or absence of SE description of the health areas, the principles and values to reduce SE inequalities in health, and the general objectives for this topic (sensitivity index, range 0-3). To review the operative content, consideration of SE inequalities in the description of health areas and proposed interventions were evaluated. Results: The Basque Country and Extremadura had a sensitivity index of 3 for symbolic content. Six Autonomous Communities had an index of 0 (Canary Islands, Catalonia, Castilla-León, Galicia, Murcia and Navarre). Regarding operative content, the Autonomous Communities that most clearly took SE inequalities into account were the Basque Country, Galicia and the Canary Islands. The specific health-related areas most frequently analyzed according to SE inequalities were alcohol and drug consumption and reproductive health. Conclusions: This study shows that little attention is paid to SE inequalities in the health plans of the various Autonomous Communities, with the exception of the Basque Country. The national and regional governments of Spain should prioritize inequalities in health in the political agenda, which would translate into their presence in the health plans.

Keywords : Health policy; Inequalities; Health plans; Social class; Spain.

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