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Journal Article

IDS Bulletin 49.2

Health Accountability for Indigenous Populations: Confronting Power through Adaptive Action Cycles

Published on 8 May 2018

Health-care providers are powerful figures in society. An informed service user may be able to identify regulatory non-compliance and abuses by these actors, but reporting them is not a mere administrative procedure. It is an act that stirs existing power relations and social hierarchies.

This article argues that the essence of an accountability intervention is the process through which service users collect and analyse evidence that is then used to confront power at different governance levels. The response from authorities is assessed and strategies adjusted accordingly in adaptive cycles of accountability action. Based on ten years’ experience supporting indigenous citizen-led accountability action in Guatemala, the authors describe how their approach evolved from an emphasis on technical components to a politically informed approach with interdisciplinary collaboration and explicit engagement with power. This article summarises lessons learned and their relevance for organisations working in health accountability in highly unequal settings.

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This article comes from the IDS Bulletin 49.2(2018) Health Accountability for Indigenous Populations: Confronting Power through Adaptive Action Cycles

Cite this publication

Flores, W. and Hernández, A. (2018) 'Health Accountability for Indigenous Populations: Confronting Power through Adaptive Action Cycles', in Nelson, E., Bloom, G and Shankland, A. (Eds) Accountability for Health Equity: Galvanising a Movement for Universal Health Coverage, IDS Bulletin 49.2, Brighton: IDS

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Authors

Walter Flores

Alison Hernández

Publication details

published by
Institute of Development Studies
doi
10.19088/1968-2018.133
language
English

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About this publication

Region
Guatemala

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