Participatory health councils allow Brazilian citizens to oversee the country's public health system (the Sistema Único de Saúde - Unified Health System or SUS). These councils exist at the municipal, state, and national level, and are supplemented by a national conference on the Brazilian health system held every four years. Though these coucils vary in diversity and in their success in impacting government decisions, citizens generally remain actively involved with the councils.
This case study was written by Sandy Heierbacher, Director of the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD), in 2001 as part of a consultancy with the Center for Disease Control's National Immunization Program.
On June 26th, 2010 AmericaSpeaks held a National Town Meeting in 58 cities around the United States called Our Budget, Our Economy, where 3,500 Americans discussed possible solutions to America’s long term fiscal challenges.