Healthcare policy

Healthcare policy focuses on public health and public healthcare provision. Access to prevention and early identification services and to appropriate healthcare for all sectors of the population is an important basic requirement. Further topics include quality assurance of the services provided and the financial viability, data situation and manageability of the healthcare system.


At first hand

Editorial. When a child, a life partner or a parent falls ill, relatives are often the first to provide support. These caregiving and nursing tasks can be demanding and time-consuming, but they are still taken for granted – even though they reduce the services required from the healthcare system. more


The new Palliative Care platform supports the relatives of people who are severely or terminally ill

Palliative Care. Relatives play an important role in the care and support of patients who are severely ill or dying. It is therefore vital that they are supported in this challenging responsibility. With its new Palliative Care platform, the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) publicises and supports services that assist relatives in this situation. more


Information platform sheds light on female genital cutting

Female genital cutting. In Switzerland, around 14,700 women and girls are affected by or threatened with female genital cutting (FGM/C). For the first time, a nationwide Swiss platform is providing key information for those affected and also for professionals, thereby helping to prevent this practice. The Federal Office of Public Health FOPH is supporting this important matter since 2003. more


Prevention rather than cure: National Strategy for the Prevention of Non-communicable Diseases

Prevention. The Swiss government and cantons have approved a national strategy for preventing and combating non-communicable diseases. Some 2.2 million people in Switzerland currently suffer from one or more chronic diseases, generating around 80 percent of the country's entire health-related costs. The objective of the strategy is to prevent or delay the development of conditions such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes and to mitigate their consequences. It builds on existing prevention activities and bundles the resources of all the players involved. Appropriate measures will be drawn up by the end of the year. more


World Suicide Prevention Day

10 September. On 10 September every year, various organisations around the world remember the people who die by committing suicide. more


At first Hand

Editorial Ursula Koch and Roy Salveter. Health is not something that is achieved and remains unchanged forever; it is a "balance" that has to be maintained throughout a person's life and actively sought every single day. Nowadays health research assumes that people are able to take responsibility for themselves, for their health and for the world around them. Individuals, their life circumstances and their ability to play a part in shaping the world they inhabit are central factors in this approach. This is why the goal of strengthening people's health skills has for many years been the focus of all the prevention efforts undertaken by the Federal Office of Public Health and its partners. more


"Strengthening health skills cannot be the task of public health policy alone."

Six questions for Stefan Spycher. Health skills are a key factor in the physical and mental wellbeing of the individual; they reduce pressure on the health system and consequently on society as a whole. But how can health policy help to establish and develop these skills in all people, and what is the state doing specifically to improve equality of opportunity? Stefan Spycher, Head of the Health Policy Directorate and Vice Director of the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) provides some answers. more


Strengthening resources means establishing the skills needed to make healthier choices at an early stage

Health skills. The federal government is seeking to strengthen the resources available to the population by enabling people to learn health skills and to take responsibility for their own health. In line with the Federal Council's "Health 2020" strategy, the Federal Office of Public Health wants to increase equality of opportunity and improve the options available to the most vulnerable groups in society for achieving and maintaining good health. more


"Our aim is to form a resolute alliance for effective prevention in the area of non-communicable diseases."

Seven questions for Pascal Strupler. According to the Swiss Health Report recently published by the Swiss Health Observatory Obsan, the Swiss population is by and large in good health. Life expectancy in our country is the second highest in the world after Japan. However, the fact that people are living longer is creating some major challenges for the Swiss health service. Chronic disorders such as cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and dementia are becoming more prevalent. Health promotion and prevention are taking on an increasingly important role because many of these conditions are influenced by the individual's lifestyle – by factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption and the amount of physical activity we get. How is the Federal Office of Public Health facing up to this challenge? We asked its Director, Pascal Strupler. more


At first hand

Editoral René Stamm It's been 20 years since "spectra", the health promotion and prevention newsletter published by the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH), was launched. Born out of a desire to raise the profile of the FOPH's projects, specifically in the fields of drugs and AIDS, the form and content of "spectra" have changed continually in the past two decades, while always reflecting the changes taking place in society. more