State and Health (1900-2013): Political Stability and Resources

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Portuguese public health policies do not surpass eighty years in terms of concerted decision-making, and it is inappropriate to speak of a national health policy before the second half of the twentieth century. This article describes the pathway of policymaking from 1900 to 2013, concerning Portuguese Welfare State emergence. It systematises the main stages of the Portuguese health policies, and analyses its stronger lines, highlighting the relationship between political stability, resources and the State’s intervention, strongly related to the emergence of the Welfare State. It summarises the milestones of health policy decisions and describes each of them since 1910. A larger description of changes occurred after the democratic regime and the origins of the Welfare State, embodied in the creation of the National Health Service are given, emphasising the process of epidemiological transition, the decline of infant mortality rate and the growth of life expectancy average levels.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-68
Number of pages27
JournalHygiea Internationalis
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2016


  • Health status
  • Health Public Policies
  • Demographic Dynamics
  • Political Stability


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