Abstracts & Papers in Stream 4

In January 2010, the parliament in Taiwan passed the bills regarding the reconfiguration of the central government's administrative structure. Under the new organisational structure, the current Department of Health and the Department of Social Affairs will merge into a new department called Department of Health and welfare. Just as English policy and service experience has shown the advantages of integration of health and social services for people with mental health needs, hopefully the reconfiguration of the government's administrations will benefit mental health service users in Taiwan too. Nonetheless, at the moment how the new administration will provide integrative services for service users and their family carers is unknown.

This paper focuses on mental health policy reform in Taiwan. Using qualitative semi-structured interview and documentary research method, relevant qualitative data regarding the history of mental health policy and various stakeholders' viewpoints concerning current policy debate were collected. In addition to the critical review of policy development and the presentation of stakeholder analysis, this paper also tackles two inter-related issues concerning future policy reform: policy transfer and cultural appropriateness of mental health care. Briefly speaking, four research questions will be presented and answered in this paper. Firstly, what are the factors influencing the development of mental health policy in Taiwan? Secondly, what are the policy stakeholders' viewpoints and influences regarding the development of mental health policy in Taiwan? Thirdly, in terms of policy transfer, what can Taiwan learn from the history of service development and policy reform in England? Fourthly, how can Taiwan develop its own culturally appropriate mental health services? Throughout the discussion of mental health policy reform in Taiwan, it is hoped that there will be policy implications for other countries in East Asia.

Jin-Yong Wang
Assistant Professor (jyw536@mail.tcu.edu.tw)
Department of Social Work, Tzu-Chi University, Taiwan

Full paper: JinYongWangg_2010_Multiple perspectives mental health policy reform in Taiwan.pdf

  The purpose of this study is to understand the effect of the welfare commissioner system on the infant mortality rate (IMR). Infant death, as well as income distribution and differential, is the important social welfare indicator in a country. A steady decline in the IMR in 1920-30s Japan is one of the largest issues concerning the studies of Japanese population and economic history. This decline contributed to accumulate human resources and to construct the "base" of economic development. Shigeru Ito (1998) argues that the decline was caused by an increase in the number of midwives and infant care institutions, while Osamu Saito (2008) analyses the effect of the mother and child care schemes by non-government organizations after 1930s, showing that aiiku villages operated by Aiiku-kai improved the IMR in rural areas. However, both studies explain one aspect of this issue, because the former analysis is limited to a trend before 1930s and the aiiku village project, mentioned in the latter study, was a very small scale project.
  This study focuses on country wide system of area commissioners, "Homen iin", and shows that the mother and child care activities for low-income households by the Homen iin as social workers caused a decline in the IMR by preventing death of newborns in prewar Japan. Interrelationship between the welfare state and infant mortality has been discussed in recent journals. "Homen iin" system is the former system of "Minsei iin", which is a communal welfare commissioner system as public-private partnership in modern era. The results of this study show the direction of the modern community welfare and social policy.


Graduate School of Economics, University of Tokyo(Doctoral student)
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Research Fellow
Kota Ogasawara


Full paper: Ogasawara K_Infant mortality_2010EASP_DP.pdf

The emergence of evidence based health care has to be one of the tremendous movements of the 1990s. In over ten years the movement has had a significant impact on health care and health policy. In developed countries, including UK, Canada, USA and Australia, there are centres for evidence based medicine, evidence based dentistry, evidence based ENT, evidence based child services and mental health services. This organizational change has been accompanied by series of practice manuals, professional journals, and newsletters, clinical toolkits and software packages, online databases and email discussion groups. The movement in developed countries has become a global expansion without national boundaries.

Although the emergence of evidence based health care in developed countries has been dramatic, the adoption of evidence based approach in other developing countries is not in good progress. Over the last ten years evidence based health care have been developed in most health fields, including evidence based medicine, dentistry, nursing, public health, physiotherapy, mental health and alternative medicine. Recently, evidence based approach originating in health care is being advocated and adopted in more distant fields of professional activity, including social work, probation, education, and public policy. The adoption of evidence based approach in developing countries provides more efficient and effective resources of decision making not just for health care but for social and public fields. Evidence based health care is the practice of making decision through the judicious identification, evaluation and application of the most relevant information within professional knowledge databases for scholars and policy decision makers in East Asian Countries.


Hyung-Gyoo (Paul) Kim
Department of Social Welfare
Graduate School of Business Administration and Policy
Anyang University
Email: paul@kinogroup.net