The aim of this study is to clarify how action learning can be used as a vehicle for promoting equal access to municipal health services for socially disadvantaged groups in a Danish context. It is the purpose of this paper to describe the methods for reducing health inequity developed in the study and to discuss how action learning methodologically contributed to achieving these results.
In the study, the front-line staff from 19 health and social service units in six different municipalities, in Denmark, each formed an action learning group to develop methods for reducing health inequity in a municipal health setting. Each group was guided by an external facilitator, according to an Action Learning Action Research phase model (ALAR-model), which structured the cyclical development of methods into four phases: diagnosing, planning action, taking action and evaluating action.
Two types of results of the study are reported in the paper. First, the authors present an overview of the results the 19 participating municipal units have achieved in their action learning processes, as well as two case examples of how two units have worked with action learning and the concrete methods and tools they have developed in this process. Second, they report the challenges and dilemmas the 19 units faced when working with action learning in the study.
With its use of action learning techniques and the ALAR-model, this study contributes to the development of practice-based methods to reduce unequal access to municipal health services for socially disadvantaged groups. Through the study, the front-line staff in the health and social service units has been involved in the problem-solving process, to a much greater extent than it has previously been adopted in a Danish municipal health setting.
Folker, A.P. and Lauridsen, S. (2017), "Using action learning to reduce health inequity in Danish municipalities", Leadership in Health Services, Vol. 30 No. 2, pp. 194-207. https://doi.org/10.1108/LHS-11-2016-0060
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