Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Primary health care, now and forever? A case study of a paradigm change

Bhatia, Mrigesh and Rifkin, Susan (2013) Primary health care, now and forever? A case study of a paradigm change. International Journal of Health Services, 43 (3). pp. 459-471. ISSN 0020-7314

Full text not available from this repository.

Identification Number: 10.2190/HS.43.3.e


The year 2008 marked the 30th anniversary of the Alma Ata Declaration that made Primary Health Care (PHC) the global health policy of member states of the World Health Organization (WHO). Why has PHC remained relevant? In part, this is because of growing evidence that health is a result of social, political, and economic environments, not merely of control of diseases and infirmities through interventions based on biomedical science. Using the conceptual framework developed by Thomas Kuhn, this article traces the emergence of PHC as a new paradigm based on social determinants to address poor health among populations (not individuals), especially those that are low-income. It traces the history of PHC over the last 30 years, focusing on policy developments within WHO. It selects three issues: definitions of PHC; financing and delivery of health services, including lay people's involvement in health care, as examples of the new paradigm; and opposition by those whose concept of health is based on the control of disease and infirmities paradigm. The article concludes by asking whether PHC will continue to be relevant and whether the question mark in the title of this article will be removed in the future.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 Baywood Publishing Co., Inc.
Divisions: Health Policy
LSE Health
Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2019 11:33
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2021 03:15

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item