Health Policy Monitor
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About the project

The International Network Health Policy & Reform was initiated and developed by the Bertelsmann Stiftung (Foundation) in 2002. Bringing together health policy experts from 20 industrialized countries, over the years it became a widely acknowledged go-to place for adamant health policy analysis combined with outcome assessments and expert opinions, and a tool for cross-country knowledge transfer about what works and what doesn't in health policy.

A new home and a merger

Participants of the 2011 network meeting

Participants at the joint meeting of the International Network Health Policy & Reform and the National Lead Institutions Network, London, October 2011.

Given the nature of the Foundation's work as a project organization that identifies niches for social change and a better understanding of levers for change in certain policy fields, it was decided to ensure this successful project's work of nearly ten years by outsourcing it to a more permanent environment.

Following a year-long tendering and selection process, in 2011 the International Network Health Policy & Reform finally merged with the National Lead Institutions Network under the auspices of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies.

Now comprised of 26 countries - the new countries being Belgium, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Portugal, and Sweden - the new group will operate a Web based information portal under the name of Health Systems and Policy Monitor. We encourage you to check out the Observatory's site frequently for information on recent health policy developments, emerging challenges, and implementation of policy reforms.

Prior to the merger, both groups already shared a commitment to quality policy analysis and health systems research. Both also have a proven track record of using their findings to support and foster evidence-based health policy making in industrialized countries.

A global perspective...

In the new environment, the global character of the former HPM network will be preserved. As a matter of fact, looking abroad and taking a global approach has been the one feature that tells this initiative apart from other, regionally operating networks.

The integration of both networks is thus expected to boost synergies, efficiency, and visibility of policy analysis around the globe.

.... combined with unique approach...

The purpose of the HPM website has been to facilitate enrich health policy discussions in and across countries. On this site, now archived, we presented emerging and current health policy developments with a focus on key players and their interactions at the various stages of health policy making.

... became a blueprint for health policy analysis and health policy knowledge transfer worldwide

Over the years, the HPM has attracted interest from a wide range of international organizations, serving both as a role model for cross-national policy analysis and as a tool for knowledge exchange for both industrialized countries from around the globe, and increasingly so from low- and middle-income countries.

If you want to learn more about the former HPM you can contact us at hpm(at)

Learn more about the former HPN

Network partners

The members of the International Network Health Policy & Reform have been highly qualified teams of researchers, specialized observers or advisers of the health policy making process.

From 2002 until 2010, the experts reported and commented every six months on selected health policy trends and developments from their countries. For this purpose, a semi-standardized questionnaire was developed and agreed upon in cooperation with all network partners.

Comprehensive online database

More than 1000 comprehensive reports can be looked up in the online database of the International Network Health Policy & Reform. Conducted in March 2003, the first survey covered the period September 2002 to February 2003. Until the merger with the National Lead Institutions Network in 2011, 16 survey rounds have been carried out.

Findings from the half-yearly surveys were also disseminated the traditional way. A half-yearly printed report, published approximately four months after the survey, and the HealthPolicyMonitor Spotlights, a concise format to learn about experiences and good practices from other countries, highlight selected health policy issues.

Criteria for coverage of health policy developments in any survey round were innovation, structural impact on a healthcare system, degree of political controversy, media coverage of an issue, and its potential transferability to other healthcare systems.

Annual symposia

Participants at the 9th annual network meeting in Odense

Participants at the 9th annual network meeting in Odense, Denmark.
















The network partners met once a year for a continuing review of the goals, tools, and priorities of their work.

In 2002, a kick-off meeting took place at the Foundation's headquarters in Westphalia (West Germany). Since then, the group got together in Vienna in 2003, in 2004 at the new Bertelsmann Conference Center in Berlin, in 2005 in Barcelona, in 2006 in Helsinki, in 2007 in Berlin, in 2008 in Ljubljana, 2009 in Krakow, and 2010 in Odense. In October 2011, the first joint meeting of the International Network Health Policy & Reform and the National Lead Institutions Network took place in London.