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International Journal of Public Health and Clinical Sciences (IJPHCS)
Open Access e-journal ISSN : 2289-7577


Diana Raj, Norain M., Mohammad Najib, Rosliza A.M.


Background:  The most common health planning theories described by literature reviews are rationalism, incrementalism, and mixed- scanning. The application of planning theories in health planning is essential to give planners a broader perspective and to ensure the aims of their programmes are achievable.  Tobacco control programme is among the health programmes that has been well established at an international level whereby The Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) and MPOWER package have served as a guide to the WHO member countries. However, the planning process of tobacco control programmes of each country are made based on further justifications and current situations of the respective countries. Marked differences in health planning theory approaches can be seen among low, middle and high income countries during the planning of tobacco programmes.

Materials and Methods: A scoping review was done using online databases by choosing the most common health planning theories used and mentioned in literature reviews. With the exception of Antarctica, several low, middle and high income countries with comprehensive information on tobacco control programmes were taken as representatives. Search for articles were conducted via four major databases including Scopus, Science Direct, Google Scholar, and PubMed with additional information from guidelines and expert reports from official websites.

Result:  The three most common theories used in health planning are rationalism, incrementalism, and mix scanning. Differences in the application of these theories are seen among low, middle and high income countries. Rationalism and mixed scanning theory were mostly applicable in high and middle income countries whereas incrementalism is mostly being used in LIC.

Conclusion:  The application of health planning theories in tobacco control program may differ depending on factors that influence the planning process mainly the economic and political factors as well as support from key players.

Keywords:  planning theories, planning characteristics, tobacco control program planning

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