Community participation in policy development : a case study of the National Cervical Screening Programme : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Educational Administration at Massey University
This thesis is a case study of the development of the National Cervical Screening Programme policy. The aim of the study was to identify and describe the political, social and ideological factors which may have influenced the National Cervical Screening Programme policy. The policy-makers included community or consumer participants as well as professionals. This relatively unique feature of community involvement was also a focus of study. The study involved a literature search and review as well as interviews with key informants. Cervical screening on a population basis was trialled as far back as the 1960s at the same time that Professor Green was questioning the efficacy of early treatment of cervical abnormalities. Green's controversial research resulted in a Royal Commission of Inquiry which recommended the establishment of a population based national cervical screening programme.
The political, social and ideological context in which the National Cervical Screening programme policy was developed is described and interpreted. It is concluded that the National Cervical Screening Programme policy was adopted by the Government as a means to ameliorate the crisis of legitimation which was evident during the 1980s. It is further concluded that community or consumer participation in policy development is a highly complex issue requiring further study. Consumer representation is particularly problematic as consumer policy-makers require considerable skills, the acquisition of which may cause them to become less representative of the public whose voice they are intended to be.