Back to top
Back to top

FPH in the news this week

Our position on the Bill has been covered by:

Alcohol

The Prime Minister gave a speech this week about the need to tackle excess drinking, and appeared to hint that he was in favour of minimum pricing on alcohol. FPH member Professor Mark Bellis gave interviews, explaining why FPH is in favour of minimum pricing, to Sky News and Newsnight. The debate about alcohol is 35 mins, 40 seconds into the programme.

Please note that these links are external to the PFH website, and may only be available for a limited time.

NHS Commissioning Board

We also had a letter in this week’s issue of HSJ, about our concerns about how public health is missing from the NHS Commissioning Board; an important part of the proposed new NHS structure. It was signed by Lindsey Davies, six former presidents and Sir Richard Thompson, President of the Royal College of Physicans. The text we sent in follows below:

The joint editorial in last week's BMJ, HSJ and Nursing Times succinctly captured the positives and negatives of the proposed health and social care legislation. One area of grave concern to the public health profession is the lack of acknowledgement that effective commissioning requires evidence and understanding of the needs and characteristics of populations and the balance of services required to promote and protect health as well as treating disease.

The skills of public health specialists provide this expertise. We are therefore gravely concerned that the proposed composition of the NHS Commissioning Board senior team fails to include a public health specialist and will lack a population perspective.

We do not understand how the Board will be able to function effectively without direct public health specialist advice to assess needs for secondary and tertiary care, and to analyse the quality of care and health outcomes in addition to providing guidance on national programmes and emergency planning. The loss of a population science perspective will contribute to greater inequity, to dominance of hospital care over prevention and to greater systems inefficiency.

We consider that the work of the National Commissioning Board will be inadequate if it lacks direct public health expertise.

Yours sincerely,

  • Professor Lindsey Davies, President of the Faculty of Public Health (FPH)
  • Dr June Crown (former President of FPH)
  • Professor Rod Griffiths (former President of FPH)
  • Professor Sian Griffiths (former President of FPH)
  • Professor Walter Holland (former President of FPH)
  • Professor Alan Maryon-Davis (past President of FPH)
  • Professor James McEwen (former President of FPH)
  • Professor Alwyn Smith, (former President of FPH)
  • Sir Richard Thompson, President of the Royal College of Physicians

Written: 17/02/2012 , last modified: 16/04/2012