Photo of Karin Bäckman

Karin Bäckman

Head of Unit, Project Manager

Head of unit at Unit of Health Care Analysis and Center Coordinator and Project Manager at Swedish National Centre for Priorities in Health.


My work is about how priority-setting processes and decision making are carried out at different levels within country councils/regions or municipalities. It comprises aspects as politician's role as decision-makers, the roles and responsibilities among those involved in priority-setting processes, the involvement of different stake-holders and internal and external transparency. Another topic is about the effects of government control on work with priority setting in country councils/regions/municipalities.

Nowadays there is indeed extensive experience in priority-setting work in Sweden both at county council/regional level as well as within individual clinical units. However, there are no universal solutions regarding how systematic priority-setting work should be done. Different variations and organisation of procedures have been tested and implemented throughout the country. One example is Östergötland Region with a long tradition of work with priority-setting issues, another example is Motala municipality, which has developed a process and model for priority setting though out all of their responsibility areas. We have done evaluations and given methodological support to both. There are also other examples. My colleagues and I have published several reports (in Swedish) about different examples and an article ”Formal priority setting in health care: the Swedish experience”.

Allocation of resources takes place at different levels in health care, both between broad operational areas at more of a county council/regional level and within different clinical areas. The system for county council/regional resource allocation is based on different criteria, but often this is not open and transparent to citizens. How the politicians weigh up these criteria and make decisions on resource allocation at overall county council/regional level is not totally apparent. How do politicians, senior administrators and clinical leaders consider the system for resource allocation in the official health care system? What type of information and decision support do the decision makers consider they need to have to make informed decisions on priority setting? How are the expressed political goals and strategies linked to decisions on priority setting and resource allocation? These are some of the interesting questions with which I work.

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Brief facts


Degree of Bachelor of Science (Bsc) in Public Administration - Local and Regional Planning, 1992
Courses in health economics and evaluation, management of public administration, statistics, etc.


Head of unit at Unit of Health Care Analysis,
Coordinator and Secretary of the board, National Centre for Priority Setting in Health Care

Recent publications

Research affiliation