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Each student will prepare an in-depth paper on the policy issue from Assignment 1.
The Policy Paper continues to develop the health policy area selected at the beginning of the course. The Policy Paper is an opportunity to critically analyse the policy or practice issue and develop a position and recommendations for your issue’s decision-maker(s). The Policy Paper builds on the Policy Brief submitted as Assignment 1. Be as specific as possible in defining the problem and your suggested solutions.
A policy paper typically has the following sections.
a. Executive summary
Insert the revised version of your policy brief developed in Assessment 1 updated with revisions suggested by the course faculty.
b. Background Set the overall context of the issue, where it occurs, and who is affected. Describe the overall problem.
Document using appropriate scholarly references and carefully selected reliable Internet resources.
Illustrate with relevant figures, maps, graphics, or other visuals.
c. Current Situation
What is the current policy? Why is it being conducted this way? Examine why the policy is not effective. Why is it necessary to find an alternative?
What are the driving forces and restraining factors?
d. Policy options
Discuss at least three alternatives and their implications. Provide rationale and impact on various stakeholders.
Who are the stakeholders and how will they be convinced?
What are legal, ethical, economic, societal, community, professional, or other factors that must be considered?
e. Recommendation Provide your recommendation.
How can your proposal be implemented?
What are the implications and expectations?
What are economic considerations?
Summarize analysis and recommendation
Students will be evaluated on their ability to critically analyse the topic and support the position with reference to scholarly research and data. Carefully critiqued Internet sources may be cited. Students must present clear, coherent arguments to support their position. Reference and discuss relevant professional, legal, policy, economic and/or ethics documents, located both in scholarly journals and limited reliable Internet sources (all appropriately documented using APA format). High standards of scholarship are expected.
The Policy Paper will be evaluated according to these areas.
a. Goals and focus (30% of paper grade):
What is the issue? For whom is it an issue? Why is this an issue now?
What is the magnitude and scope of the issue?
Who is affected by this policy issue (e.g., population groups)?
At what level of government or institutional governance is your issue situated?
Who are the stakeholders and decision-makers for the issue as defined?
b. Critical Analysis (30% of paper grade):
Presents analysis of what is known about the issue. with an explanation of WHY health status is considered suboptimal, client satisfaction is low and/or access problems exist.
What policy levers and control knobs are operating and/or could be used to influence the issue?
Research & Evidence:
Reliable, scholarly evidence supports this health issue or policy concern.
The overall context and political environment for the intervention are discussed.
What are various perspectives on this issue?
What/where are government or institutional responsibilities in this area?
Is there legislation on this issue? At what level of government?
If this is a workplace issue, explain the context.
Who are the current stakeholders?
What are their values and interests?
Are the service “recipients” a stakeholder group?
c. Position and Recommendations (30% of paper grade):
The paper provides critical analysis, recommending a course of action with a brief description of your position. The paper should address whether advocating implementing a new policy, changing a current policy by enhancing or deleting certain aspects of it, or maintaining the status quo. Does the course of action flow logically from the critical analysis?
Best Advice Recommendations: Presents decision-makers with the best advice: e.g., 3 feasible and reasonable recommendations or strategic or implementation steps for decision-makers; OR
Compromise: Provide decision-makers with at least two options to allow compromise or negotiation. Usually, these options are major changes to improve or enhance specific aspects of current policy, an approach that tones down or reverses the policy direction, and some type of middle ground. Explain which is being recommended.