Research, evaluation, monitoring

To ensure the greatest possible effectiveness, measures that are aimed at promoting health and preventing diseases must be based on sound scientific foundations. Evaluation is used to support strategy development, achieve optimum effectiveness, promote organisational learning and provide accountability to the public.


"Prevention measures always require careful weighing up of the demands of health protection and economic freedom."

Ursula Koch answers five questions. The Swiss government has prolonged the national prevention programmes on diet & physical activity, alcohol and tobacco until 2016. What does Ursula Koch, joint head of the National Prevention Programmes Division of the Federal Office of Public Health, think of this decision and of the role of prevention in our society? more


Success in managing the problem of drug abuse

MaPaDro lll. The Federal Government’s Third Package of Measures to Reduce Drug-related Problems (MaPaDro III 2006–2011) has been effective. An evaluation of the project has confirmed this. The following is an overview of the most important areas of progress in managing drug use and its consequences. more


Flu prevention: objectives not (yet) achieved

Evaluation. The communication objectives relating to seasonal flu 2008–2012 have not yet been achieved. This is due more to scarcity of resources (compared with the very ambitious objectives) than to the choice and implementation of measures. more


Eating healthily and enjoying a more active lifestyle

State of affairs of the National Programme on Diet and Physical Activity. The National Programme on Diet and Physical Activity 2008−2012 (NPDPA) was initiated a good three years ago. Its aims are to create conditions conducive to a healthy lifestyle and to motivate the population to maintain a balanced diet, take enough exercise and thus prevent diseases from occurring. more


«Geneva could become a new centre of acknowledged excellence in all aspects of drug policy.»

Five questions for Jean-Félix Savary. The association of addiction management professionals, Groupement Romand d’Etudes des addictions (GREA), hosted a conference on «50 years of drug prohibition» on 19 October. We talked to Jean-Félix Savary, secretary general of GREA, on the background situation. more


Men play sport and women cook

Gender differences and health. Men do more sport and feel mentally healthier than women. But they display shortcomings in their eating habits and suffer more often from diet-related illnesses. These conclusions are based on current data obtained from the diet and physical activity monitoring system MOSEB. more


Health impact assessments: a tool for sustainable policy-making

Multisectoral health policy. What’s right for the environment should also be right for human health: in the wake of the environmental impact assessment, a comparable approach for health – the health impact assessment (HIA) – is now growing in importance because it can help policy-makers assess and judge in advance the possible effects of a planned measure on public health. The HIA also in­creases awareness of health-policy issues in political areas unrelated to health. It can therefore help boost the transparency of the political decision-making process and sustainably improve and maintain public health. more


Swiss pandemic control evaluated

Evaluations. Two expert evaluations of Switzerland’s efforts to control the H1N1 influenza (swine flu) pandemic acknowledge the great commitment of those responsible while also identifying potential for improvement. more


At first hand

Editorial Ursula Ulrich. «Now’s not the time to be thinking of that – we’ve got to save money!» This was the answer I received from a health minister in the late 1990s when I asked whether the government had considered the effects that reducing the number of gym and sports lessons at high school would have on the health of young people then and in the future. more


To him that has (affluence) shall be given (health)

Social determinants of health. «To him that has shall be given». This popular saying accurately sums up the principle behind the social determinants of health. People who are better off in terms of key aspects of life and work can also expect to live longer and healthier lives than others. more