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FPH welcomes £2bn for adult social care announced in Budget

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) has welcomed the Government’s commitment to provide £2bn for adult social care over the next three years, announced in the Budget. Prevention of long-term conditions can reduce treatment costs and improve health outcomes which in turn avoid premature deaths and ensure a more sustainable NHS.

We now urge the Government to commit to increased public health investment and make a truly “radical upgrade in prevention” as advocated in the NHS's Five Year Forward View which is of particular importance in the context of the removal of the ring-fenced public health grant in 2018/19 and move to a 100% business rate retention model.

We are also encouraged that the Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced rates of the soft drinks levy in line with previous announcements and confirmed the Government’s commitment to this key element in efforts to reduce childhood obesity. We welcome the Chancellor's announcement that the Government will consult on introducing a new duty band for high-strength ciders – a key measure in addressing harmful drinking among children and vulnerable groups.

We further welcome the decision to introduce a Minimum Excise Tax on cigarettes and to continue the tobacco tax ‘escalator’, which means a tax rise of 2% above inflation for all tobacco products – an effective means of reducing health inequalities as they have a greater impact on more disadvantaged smokers than the general population. We now urge government to publish a Tobacco Control Plan as soon as possible, and to find a sustainable solution to funding tobacco control including stop-smoking services, media campaigns and action to tackle the illicit trade of tobacco.

Written: 08/03/2017 , last modified: 09/03/2017