Dear Health Minister: Tend the garden but make sure you fence the crocodiles

Frances Baum, Paul Laris, Ian Fisher, Lareen Newman, Colin MacDougall

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    This paper offers lessons to in-coming health ministers on how they can act to reduce inequities and take action on social determinants. It draws on an interview study of twenty former Australian State, Territory and Federal health ministers about the extent to which they were able to do these things during their tenure. In order to take effective health equity action the health ministers advised: ensure evidence is used to develop a strong party policy platform for health equity; install policy entrepreneurs for health equity and social determinants in the health ministry; build popular constituencies through processes of deliberative democracy; establish context appropriate cross-department mechanisms to coordinate action on social determinants; and be elected in the context of a political party which values social justice and redistribution.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)295-296
    Number of pages2
    JournalJournal of Epidemiology and Community Health
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2014


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