How is it possible to improve health in a cost-effective and politically acceptable way? Abel-Smith draws from the experience of developed and developing nations to answer this question. The book covers all key areas of health - how to define it, how to plan for it, how to pay for it. The book provides an international perspective and deals extensively with the complex issue of health financing in accessible, non-technical language. The first part of the book deals with the major determinants of health and health policy in its broadest sense. The second narrows the perspective to health service planning and the third to health service financing. The final part concentrates on how to create both efficient and user-friendly health services. The author is an internationally recognised authority and has advised governments around the world on health care. The book is aimed at undergraduate and postgraduate students taking courses in health policy planning and management, in social policy and political science and economics degrees.