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EACEA National Policies Platform


7. Health and Well-Being

7.2 Administration and governance

Last update: 31 March 2023
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  1. Governance
  2. Cross-sectorial cooperation



Main actors

The Ministry of Health and Social Affairs (Socialdepartementet) is in charge of youth policy. The ministry is responsible for preparing the parts of the central government budget concerning youth policy.  Coordinating and developing youth policy issues, including cross-sectorial youth policy objectives and follow-up of youth policy is a part of the ministry's responsibilities. The ministry is also responsible for the Swedish Agency for Youth and Civil Society (MUCF).

Besides that, the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs (Socialdepartementet) is responsible for issues concerning the welfare of society. The responsibilities include both health promotion, health care, social care and social insurance. The ministry’s work also includes sport issues, rights of the child and rights for people with disabilities and gender equality.

The National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen) has overall responsibility for providing equal health and welfare services to all Swedish citizens. The board ensures good health care and services by producing guidelines, working with regulations, carrying out evaluations and exercising supervision and follow-ups.

The Public Health Agency of Sweden (Folkhälsomyndigheten) has the national responsibility for public health issues and works to ensure good public health. The agency monitors the health status of the population and factors that affecting health. The agency pays special attention to population groups with particular risk to suffer of ill-health. A specific task is to promote mental well-being and to prevent suicide, where one of the target groups is young people.

The Health and Social Care Inspectorate (Inspektionen för vård och omsorg, IVO) is a government agency responsible for supervising health care, social services and activities under the Act concerning Support and Service for Persons with Certain Functional Impairments (LSS). Under the Health and Medical Services Act, all citizens are to be given good care on equal terms irrespective of where in the country they live. The individual patient, care receiver or relative must be able to be sure that the Act is followed and that their interests are safeguarded. Supervision means an independent and free-standing examination that laws and other regulations are followed.

The Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (Forte) has the responsibility to promote and support research in the field of working life, as well as in social and public health sciences. The Council also has the task of coordinating research on, among other things, children and young people, including children and young people’s health and social research on alcohol and drugs.

In 2015, the government appointed a special commission, The Commission for Equity in Health (Kommissionen för jämlik hälsa) with the task to submit proposals that can help to reduce health inequalities in society. The Commission has left its final report in June 2017. The proposal is presented in more detail in section 7.8, Current debates and reforms.


Non-public actors

The Swedish Sports Confederation (Riksidrottsförbundet) is the umbrella organisation of the Swedish sports movement. The main task for the confederation is to provide support for their member organisations and to represent the sports movement. The confederation is also responsible for distributing government grants to sports and athletics associations. The sports movement is by far the largest domain for young people in the Swedish civil society.

The Swedish Council for Information on Alcohol and Other Drugs (Centralförbundet för alkohol- och narkotikaupplysning, CAN) is a non-governmental organisation with 47 member organisations. The main task for the organisation is to follow the drug trends in Sweden and to inform the public and educate professionals on alcohol and other drugs. The organisation is mainly financed by an annual government grant. CAN conducts an annual nation-wide survey on alcohol and other drugs among students in compulsory and upper secondary schools. 


Cross-sectorial cooperation

Since public health policy is cross-sectorial, every ministry is responsible for the public health aspects of the work within their areas. The Ministry of Health and Social Affairs has a special responsibility to coordinate public health policy. 

The County Administrative Boards (Länsstyrelserna), which are government bodies in the counties, are charged with a range of tasks, including implementing national objectives, co-ordinating the different interests of the county, promoting the development of the county, establishing regional objectives and safeguarding the rule of law in every instance. The County Administrative Boards are responsible for implementing the national public health objectives by taking public health into account in within their areas of responsibility.

The Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (Sveriges Kommuner och Regioner, SKR) is both an employers’ organisation and an organisation that represents and advocates for local government in Sweden. All municipalities, county councils and regions in Sweden are members. SKL and the Government have, since a number of years, agreements on investments in the field of mental health. One goal of the work is to improve and coordinate efforts for the mental health of children and adolescents.