Public health

New access to health indicators

Public Health England has re-worked its Local Health website to provide easy access to health and population information. The website provides a searchable national map which breaks down population health statistics by region and also by health indicators.

w: http://www.localhealth.org.uk

New MAP identity

The MAP Foundation, set up by Michele Angelo Petrone in 2002 has developed a new identity and website www.makingartpersonal.org. The aim is to develop an online community of people who have been affected by cancer including patients, carers, families and friends.  Using the arts as a means of expressing the impact of life threatening illness, initially painting, drawing, photographs, poetry and creative writing they will be able to upload images and share stories  “for every step of their cancer journey” with others.

Helping People Live Better for Longer

The Department of Health has published a new guide setting out its role as the “steward of the health and care system”. The guide, ‘Helping People Live Better for Longer’ also explains the Department’s relationship with its various “Arms-Length Bodies” such as the Care Quality Commission, NHS England, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and Public Health England.

w: www.gov.uk/government/publications/helping-people-live-better-for-longer

Arts in the planning framework

The Chief Cultural and Leisure Officers Association and the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) has launched a good practice guideImproving culture, arts and sporting opportunities through planning” which aims to help local authority planners and culture and leisure officers to meet the national requirement to identify and positively plan for improved opportunities in cultural, sport and leisure provision – both within Local Plan policies and in making planning decisions.  You can download the guidance here

£5.45 billion budget for local public health services announced

A £5.45 billion two-year ring-fenced public health budget for local authorities has been announced by the Department of Health.

From April 2013, public health budgets will be protected for the first time, with local authorities taking the lead for improving the health of their local communities. This aims to drive local efforts to improve health and wellbeing by tackling the wider determinants of poor health.

It is claimed that funding is specifically targeted, for the first time, at those areas with the worst health outcomes.

Arts and Health Awards 2012 open for nominations – deadline 6 July

The Royal Society for Public Health awards marking significant contributions to research and practice in the field of Arts and Health are now in their fifth year.

This year, the awards will focus on the role of the creative arts in the promoting the health and wellbeing of children and/or young people. Nominations are invited for individuals, teams or organisations whose work has furthered the contribution of the creative arts in fostering the health and wellbeing of children and/or young people in one or more of the following ways:

Public health workforce consultation – deadline 29 June

A consultation has been launched to help identify and unlock the potential of the people who are responsible for improving the population’s health and wellbeing.

The public health workforce consultation is aimed at a wide audience, and the findings will be used to inform a new strategy for this group of staff.

The Local Government Association is encouraging councils to take part in the consultation.

The consultation was signposted in the public health document Healthy Lives, Healthy People: update and way forward.

Health and Wellbeing boards, System leaders or talking shops?

A new report from The King’s Fund assesses the ways in which local authorities have begun to develop new arrangements with their partners – the size, composition and ways of working emerging from the shadow Health and Wellbeing boards.

NHS Bill is passed

Having passed its final parliamentary hurdle, the Health and Social Care bill is expected to become law within the next two weeks. The bill, which passes responsibility for commissioning of health services to groups of GPs and introduces elements of competition to healthcare competition has been hotly contested with many trades unions, professional bodies, patient groups and others opposing its introduction.

Public health spending

The Department of Health has published projected figures for 2012/13 public health spending. These figures, based on information provided by Primary Care Trusts about their public health spending in 2010/11, will help to determine local authority allocations when they take on responsibility for this spending from April 2013. The figures show significant differences between local areas, with a six fold variation in London between the area expected to spend the most (£29 million) and the area expected to spend the least (£4.7 million).

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