HEALTH REFORM INITIATIVES IN THE INTERWAR ERA
THE CASE OF GREECE AND THE ROLE OF THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS HEALTH ORGANISATION
During the Interwar period (1918–1939), financial aid and technical assistance were given to countries worldwide by the League of Nations Health Organisation (LNHO) in an attempt to reform public health systems, address population health problems, and control infectious diseases. Greece was one of the countries that received this aid, and in 1928 cooperation with the LNHO was initiated. The aim of this alliance was an integrated health reform plan en- titled “Collaboration with the Greek government for the sanitary reorganization of Greece” and had a dual purpose: a) the reorganisation of the health services and b) the establishment of a unified public health system that provided comprehensive healthcare for all citizens.
The current article discusses the collaboration between Greece and the LNHO and their endeavour to reorganise the health system during the Interwar period. More specifically, it investigates the significant legislative and policy initiatives and their impact on the health system’s evolution. In addition, it aims to explore the factors that affected the outcome of LNHO’s reform plan. It is also argued that the proposed health reform plan was not fully implemented due to intense political and social conflicts that resulted from the institutional measures taken to address public health problems as well as financial and technical con- straints.