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What is the evidence on effectiveness of empowerment to improve health?

February 2006

ABSTRACT
This is a Health Evidence Network (HEN) synthesis report on the effectiveness of empowerment strategies to improve health and reduce health disparities. The report shows that empowering initiatives can lead to health outcomes and that empowerment is a viable public health strategy.The key message from this review is that empowerment is a complex strategy that sits within complex environments. Effective empowerment strategies may depend as much on the agency and leadership of the people involved, as the overall context in which they take place. HEN, initiated and coordinated by the WHO Regional Office for Europe, is an information service for public health andhealth care decision-makers in the WHO European Region. Other interested parties might also benefit from HEN. This HEN evidence report is a commissioned work and the contents are the responsibility of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the official policies of WHO/Europe. The reports were subjected to international review, managed by the HEN team. When referencing this report,please use the following attribution: Wallerstein N (2006). What is the evidence on effectiveness of empowerment to improve health? Copenhagen, WHO Regional Office for Europe (Health Evidence Network report; http://www.euro.who.int/Document/E88086.pdf, accessed [day month year]). Keywords
PATIENT PARTICIPATION POWER – psychology PUBLIC HEALTH HEALTH SERVICES ACCESSIBILILTY SOCIOECONOMICFACTORS OUTCOME ASSESSMENT (HEALTH CARE) META-ANALYSIS EUROPE

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What is the evidence on effectiveness of empowerment to improvehealth? WHO Regional Office for Europe’s Health Evidence Network (HEN) February 2006

Summary .................................................................................................................................... 4 The issue................................................................................................................................. 4 Findings...
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