The Health Improvement Committee acts a source of advice and expertise on all public health aspects relating to health improvement. It works to improve the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities by advocating for an environment that supports healthy lifestyle choices and by addressing underlying issues such as poverty, lack of educational opportunities, and other social determinants of health and inequalities. Its remit includes non-communicable diseases including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, and cancer resulting from determinants such as poor nutrition, lack of physical activity and tobacco or alcohol users.
The following Special Interest Groups (SIGs) report to and collaborate with the Health Improvement Committee, to maximise their impact.
- Arts & Health
- Health Economics
- Healthy Places
- Musculoskeletal Health (MSK)
- Oral Health
- Public Health Film
Committee Chair - Rachel Johns
Committee Vice-chair - Thara Raj
Email address - firstname.lastname@example.org
Health Improvement Committee Meeting - 18th October 2022
At this meeting, the Health Improvement Committee heard from Greg Fell, ADPH, on Commercial Determinants of Health, as well as the Poverty SIG, Public Health Film SIG, and Oral Health SIG. Key points can be found below.
Greg Fell, ADPH Presentation on Commercial Determinants of Health (CDOH)
- There are no simple or quick answers on this.
- We must frame interventions in a way that acknowledges the cause of harm as industry activity and tactics, rather than individual considerations.
- Tobacco and gambling are key topics at the moment, alongside oil and medicine.
- There is no single focal point or piece of work pulling together "who does what" around CDOH in terms of government agencies.
- There is a fair amount of focus within academic practice, including SPECTRUM, however not so much in service-oriented practice or policy-oriented practice.
- Training should be systematised, including LGA member training, MFPH training, syllabus, and compiling “essential reads” and viewing.
- Getting our narrative as a profession right takes skill and practice
- Focal points for non-government PH advocacy include ASH, OHA, AHA. It's important to consider who should “own” the topic, and what trade-offs arise in that. Advocacy groups tend to be “topic specific”, with little binding everything together.
- There are opportunities to learn from other UK administrations.
Public Health Film SIG
Oral Health SIG
The Poverty SIG covered SIG membership, which is growing and has members across the 4-nations. The SIG updated that they are working closely with the FPH board, other SIGs and the HIC to address the cost-of-living crisis. Recently, the SIG worked with FPH to create a policy brief on poverty and the cost-of-living crisis.