In November 2010 the Coalition Government published its proposals for developing a new Public Health Service for England.
Healthy lives, healthy people: Our strategy for public health in England
The CIEH welcomed the White Paper and its associated documents. We undertook a series of consultation events on the Government’s proposals in early 2011 and presented our response directly to the then Public Health Minister, Anne Milton, at the closing event on 31 March 2011.
In January 2011 the Government published its Health and Social Care Bill which, among other things, incorporated the necessary legislative changes needed to bring the new service into existence. The CIEH was active throughout the passage of the Bill in putting forward the case for the environmental health profession to play a leading role in the new service, producing a number of parliamentary briefings and tabling amendments.
A particular concern of ours was that the County and District Councils should be required to co-operate in order to deliver joined-up and effective services. We wrote to the then Secretary of State of Health, Andrew Lansley, to put forward our case and received a reply from him making it clear that his Department expects County Councils to involve their districts. The letter contains some helpful comments about involvement in the new Health and Wellbeing Boards and the processes leading to the carrying out of the Joint Strategic Needs Assessments and the creation of the new health and wellbeing strategies. The Health and Social Care Bill received Royal Assent on 27 March 2012, becoming the Health and Social Care Act 2012
Marmot Review event
On 23 February 2011, the CIEH and the Marmot Health Inequalities Review Team held a conference at CIEH headquarters with the aim of addressing the key questions facing local authorities as they gear up to take over the public health lead from the NHS in the delivery of England’s local public health services from 2013 onwards.
Health Select Committee Report
In November 2011 the Health Select Committee published the report of its ‘Public Health’ inquiry which examined the Government’s proposals in detail. The CIEH submitted written evidence to the inquiry. It welcomed the Committee’s report and recommendations and published a summary of the report for CIEH members.
Public Health Outcomes Framework
In January 2012 the Government published a Public Health Outcomes Framework for England, 2013-2016. The framework sets out the desired outcomes for public health and how these will be measured and gives the lead role for achieving this to local authorities. A set of supporting public health indicators will help focus understanding of progress year by year nationally and locally on those things that matter most to public health. The CIEH welcomed publication of the framework which incorporates many of the indicators it had been calling for but feels that there are some indicators missing, for example on housing, contaminated land and the provision of wholesome water and food to reduce disease.