Faculty of Public Health Statement on COVID-19

This statement has been produced by the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) Board in relation to the UK’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The statement draws on the experiences across the UK and highlights the key areas on how best to tackle COVID-19 and save lives.

These key areas identified in the statement should be urgently considered by Government.

19 June 2020

Statement on the easing of lockdown and on test and trace

A consensus statement from Peter English and Maggie Rae as co-Chairs of the joint PHMCC (public health medicine consultative committee) on the easing of lockdown and on test and trace during COVID-19

  1. There has been a significant reliance on testing for the presence of COVID-19, and the implications of negative test results in particular, in the UK Government’s policy response to COVID-19. However, this has been without a clear idea of the purpose of testing and of the level of confidence one can have in a negative result, and the policy implications of that level of confidence.

    We need scientifically consistent guidance and clear advice that COVID-19 symptoms are also an indication to self-isolate for seven days, regardless of test results. We, therefore, welcome the recent changes to the national guidance in response to this concern.

  2. We support the statements by the Association of Directors of Public Health, the Faculty of Public Health, the British Dental Association and the BMA on the risks of easing lockdown too soon. We share the concerns raised by the ADPH that the UK Government is “lifting too many restrictions, too quickly” ahead of all the Government’s own five tests being met.

  3. We echo the important message about the role of directors of public health in developing and implementing local outbreak plans in partnership with other stakeholders, including national and local government, health services and public health agencies and others.

    We also highlight the need for support and engagement by the UK Government with several pressing issues such as:

    - workforce capacity

    - funding

    - timely access to relevant data

    - the unequal impact of COVID-19 on Britain’s communities.

  4. Furthermore, we urge the UK Government to commit to a renewed drive to promote the importance of handwashing, social distancing and self-isolation of individuals and their households if symptomatic.

  5. We recognise that the app has a role to play as a possible means of helping with the concerns around workforce and system capacity. We note that it requires high take-up and a national public information campaign to be fully effective. There are also potential health inequalities issues arising from its use that should be considered.

  6. With all that in mind, it is not yet appropriate to implement all phase 2 measures. The number of new cases and of deaths is still too high meaning that the NHS test and trace service as it stands is not capable of following up the contacts of all new cases either because of workforce capacity limitations or because the app is not yet fully functional.

18 June 2020

Faculty of Public Health statement on racism and inequalities

In recent weeks we have seen populations first in America, then across the world, come together to protest against the unacceptable injustices faced by minority ethnic groups - injustices which are still prevalent in today’s society.

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) condemn those responsible for the death of George Floyd, and we condemn discrimination and violence in any shape or form. At this time it is important that communities are able to express their desire for change in a safe manner which respects the threat of COVID-19.

The Black Lives Matter movement reminds us that we cannot remain indifferent to societal injustices in any section of our population. We know that these injustices hold severe consequences for public health, and for people in these communities who are LGBT, have disabilities, or are old, the discrimination and the inequalities they face are compounded.

These societal injustices manifest adversely, not only on health outcomes, but through limited access to education, jobs, housing and other fundamental needs which we recognise as the wider determinants of health. FPH, through its members, stands at the forefront of challenging and addressing these injustices, and is committed to tackling the health inequalities prevalent in today’s society.

Not enough is being done to rectify the inequalities experienced by Britain’s minority ethnic population, as most recently demonstrated by PHE’s COVID-19 disparities review and stakeholder engagement. These inequalities are not new findings though, and we know that minority ethnic communities face inequalities in a plurality of areas as demonstrated by the Government’s 2018 Race Disparity Audit.

COVID-19 has once again shone a light on the decades of discrimination faced by these populations, and on the widening inequalities they face as a consequence. It is essential that steps are now taken to tackle these inequalities at their fundamental level, and that discussion turns to action. We must work together, with unceasing determination, to put an end to the injustices faced by Britain’s minority ethnic population.

We know that alongside higher morbidity and mortality, these groups are more likely to experience severe mental ill-health. The reaction we have seen from those protesting speaks to the psychological trauma experienced by communities living with the consequences of the systemic inequalities prevalent in today’s society. We recognise that many of our members, already facing pressure in tackling the current pandemic, will be distressed by these impacts on themselves, on their families and on their colleagues.

The Faculty of Public Health is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion, and to tackling any form of racism or violence. We are committed to minority ethnic representation at our senior leadership level and support our leaders in understanding the issues experienced by these communities.

FPH has a diverse and international membership, with over 400 of our Members based outside of the UK. Ensuring our entire membership has a voice and visibility in shaping and delivering the work of the Faculty is hugely important. Through our Special Interest Groups we seek to forge global links and communities of practice that allow our members to share resources to tackle inequalities. The Black Lives Matter movement is global and we will reach out to our international members in solidarity to address global inequity and racial discrimination.

We recognise that all organisations can do more to address these inequalities and to recognise, and put an end to, racism and discrimination of all types. FPH will soon be supporting an event focused on embedding anti-racism into our public health practice, organised by our Specialty Registrars. We will also be taking other actions to address these issues, including becoming a member of the Race Equality Charter, and call on our membership to do the same. FPH welcome blogs from our members on their personal experiences of racism and will set up a web page with relevant resources and links. We also welcome specific recommendations for addressing the excess risk from COVID-19 within minority ethnic groups.

16 June 2020

FPH Board supports European Public Health Week 2020

The FPH Board met remotely today to discuss COVID-19 strategies in the 4 nations of the UK, the Independent SAGE report, adjustments to FPH examinations and our Annual Report for 2019.
 
The Board was pleased to meet during European Public Health Week, coordinated by the European Public Health Association, which aims to raise awareness of important public health themes and connect public health professionals across Europe.
 
Each day of European Public Health week addresses a different theme, with today's theme being 'Equal Health for All'. The vision of the Faculty of Public Health, as reflected in our organisational strategy 2020 - 25, is to ensure 'Better Health for All - leaving no one behind', and so the Board was happy to see today's theme reflected in the work of the Faculty.  In particular, the Board:

We would also like to draw your attention to our recently published supplement to the Journal of Public Health featuring a special collection of papers on Public Health Ethics and the science of social justice, with several papers within the collection addressing the importance of health equity.
 
Other themes during the week include promoting health through global goals; primary care in the digital age; staying together for mental health and grow old, grow healthy.
 
The Faculty of Public Health is pleased to be a part of European Public Health Week, and to support its aim of fostering collaboration between colleagues and celebrating the public health profession.

14 May 2020

Public Health Ethics and ‘The Science of Social Justice’

FPH’s Journal of Public Health has published a special collection on Public Health Ethics and ‘The Science of Social Justice’, guest edited by Dr Farhang Tahzib and Professor John Coggon of FPH’s Ethics Committee.

The issue, which was collated prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, explains and contextualises what it means to understand ethics for, in, and of public health.

The special issue’s broad approach reminds us of the importance of public health considerations within and beyond questions concerning contagious disease, and promotes understanding of how ethical deliberations feature in public health policy and practice.

All papers are freely available until May 31st 2020, or have been published Open Access.

You may view the collection online here: https://academic.oup.com/jpubhealth/pages/public-health-ethics-and-the-science-of-social-justice

21 April 2020

FPH supports global commitments to fund action on COVID-19

COVID-19 is having a dramatic impact on populations across the world, and we have seen a largely united response from the global community with commitments to fund action on the pandemic. We are pleased that the UK has made significant contributions, including this weekend’s announcement of a further £200 million aid.

This support is essential, as the capacity for the poorest in society to protect themselves and manage physical and social isolation is much more limited and therefore likely to increase already marked health inequalities.

Whilst there has been some political criticism of WHO, geo-politics must not undermine collective global action in the face of this pandemic.

Never has there been a greater need for all countries of the world to cooperate and pull together in response to this crisis, and never has the role of UN agencies, which serve all their Member States, been more important in leading this global collective action.

Some useful links on the UK’s aid contribution to the COVID response are available below, providing information on the commitments made and the agencies which will benefit.

15 April 2020

FPH and ADPH joint statement on COVID-19

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) and the Association of Directors of Public Health (ADPH) are immensely proud of the role the UK public health workforce is playing in response to COVID-19. Day in and day out our members are working tirelessly to protect the public’s health in the most challenging of circumstances, and we thank our members for their energy, skill and expertise.
 
The public health workforce is at the forefront of efforts to tackle this global pandemic. Directors of Public Health and their teams are providing trusted leadership and advice to their local populations. For our part, as organisations, we are entirely focussed on enabling our members to carry out their responsibilities as effectively as possible and ensuring their voice is heard by national decision makers. 
 
Collaboration is key in tackling the pandemic. We are working with our members to develop and maintain strong relationships between those working in public health on the frontline in local government and the NHS and numerous other settings, the Chief Medical Officers, the four public health agencies of the UK, and a range of professional bodies, providers and charities. 
 
The coming months will be enormously challenging for all of us in both our personal and professional lives and we urge kindness and respect for colleagues across the health and care sector, all of local government and civil society. We are now all working towards the same goal of saving lives and protecting the health of the public, and we will find strength in working as a unified system.
 
We will continue to support your vital work in whatever way we can, and once again thank you for your ceaseless commitment to the public’s health.

2 April 2020

FPH Statement on the Public Health Grant 2020/21

The UK Faculty of Public Health (FPH), the professional body for the UK’s public health workforce, welcomes the announcement of the public health grant 2020/21.

The delay of the budget has caused uncertainty for local authorities, and now that the allocations have been published, the public health workforce can continue to tackle the COVID-19 crisis with certainty of their budgets for 2020/21.

The allocation has been set at £3.279bn, an increase of £145 million on the public health grant 2019/20.

Though an increase, further funding will be needed to reverse years of cuts to public health services and FPH has long called for a £1 billion increase for the public health budget. This will allow our members to restore public health services and protect and improve the health of the public, both during and beyond the current COVID-19 crisis.

Professor Maggie Rae, FPH President said “We are pleased to see the announcement of the public health grant and to see an increase in funding for local authorities to deliver essential public health services for their populations.

COVID-19 now dominates the public health agenda, and certainty over budget allocations allows our members, the public health workforce, to continue their tireless work to protect and improve the health of the public.

Though we are pleased to see an increase in the budget allocation, more funding will be needed to reverse cuts to public health services – FPH have called for a £1 billion increase in public health funding, and join with the Association of Directors of Public Health in calling for a multi-year settlement for public health.

As well as responding to COVID-19 we want to ensure that other health and wellbeing services that are vital to the health of the public, such as smoking cessation services, remain as effective as possible.”

18 March 2020

FPH statement on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As the professional organisation for the public health workforce in the UK, the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) has been closely monitoring the global Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Many of our members, from our senior leadership through to our specialist registrars, from across the four nations of the UK and internationally, have been working tirelessly to manage this incident.

FPH President Professor Maggie Rae is in regular contact with the Chief Medical Officers, the four national Public Health Agencies, the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, the FPH Board and other key stakeholders including colleagues across the four nations of the UK regarding management of COVID-19. 

Excellent collaborative working is essential in dealing with this outbreak and FPH thanks our members for their dedication to protecting the public’s health and the effective joined-up working that we have seen.

We commend the work of the Association of Directors of Public Health, the Royal Society for Public Health and other partner agencies. We also thank Directors of Public Health who are providing support to their local populations.

An ever evolving situation, for the latest information and advice regarding COVID-19, please check online via gov.uk for guidance provided by Public Health England and the Department of Health and Social Care.

Thursday 5 March 2020

Faculty of Public Health launches new five-year strategy

The new five-year strategy outlines our mission of working with members to promote and protect human health and its wider determinants for everyone in society, leaving no one behind. This high level strategy is supported by delivery plans for each of FPH’s areas of work.

Our charitable objects are at the core of our strategy; to promote knowledge in the field of public health, to assure the highest possible standards of professional competence and practice, and to act as an authoritative body for the purpose of consultation and advocacy concerning public health.

The document outlines our eight strategic priorities and the key principles which will drive our work, with our members always at the heart of everything we do as an organisation.

We will work with our networks across the healthcare sector and in government to protect and improve the health of populations across the four nations of the UK and around the world.

FPH relies on our members to govern the organisation, plan its strategies and enable us to operate as the professional home for public health specialists. Our members develop and maintain our curriculum, design and deliver examinations, audit our CPD, support our training courses, lobby government, and in many more ways help us deliver on our charitable objects and protect the health of populations. To find out how you can get involved, you can visit the 'get involved' page.

We thank all those involved in developing this strategy, including FPH members, colleagues, staff and partners, and we thank the wider FPH membership for their continued dedication to the public’s health.

You can download the strategy here.

20 January 2020

Wales Health Impact Assessment Support Unit: Trade, health and well-being event report

As a result of the decision to leave the EU, the UK will be developing its own independent trade policy for the first time in over 40 years. This has significant implications for a range of the determinants of health and well-being in Wales including food standards, environmental protection, tobacco and alcohol regulations, as well as economic and working conditions.

The Wales Health Impact Assessment Support Unit (WHIASU) held a workshop and masterclass with multi agency stakeholders on November 7th 2019 as part of implementing the actions of the Public Health Implications of Brexit: A HIA Approach Main Findings Report (2019). One recommendation from the HIA was that the public health system should consider how to build knowledge, skills and capacity to ensure health and well-being are considered at the forefront of the development of new trade policy.

The event was chaired by the Chief Executive of Public Health Wales, Dr Tracey Cooper, and aimed to build and share knowledge on the new trade policy environment and its potential implications for health and well-being in Wales and also explore how the public health system can engage with the development of new trade policy.

Speakers included policy makers, academic with expertise in the impacts of trade on population health and inequalities, public health.

FPH Policy Lead Dr. Sue Lloyd delivered a presentation on “Engaging and influencing trade policy: negotiating a ‘healthy’ trade policy for the UK”.

You can download Sue's presentation and others via the WHIASU website here.

15 January 2020

Maggie Rae and Martin McKee on the Brexit Withdrawal Bill

The first in the Faculty of Public Health's (FPH) film series on Brexit and Public Health. FPH President, Professor Maggie Rae interviews Professor Martin McKee CBE of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine on the public health impacts of Brexit.

 

8 January 2019

FPH Fracking Statement

Fracking is a term used to describe the process of high volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF) for unconventional shale gas deposits deep underground. Water, sand and chemicals are injected into the rock at high pressure which allows the gas to flow out to the head of the well.

Health concerns have been raised in the US where fracking has been practised on a large scale for over a decade, relating to management of the waste water produced, the risk of leakage of gases and chemicals into surrounding air and water, the nuisance effects, and socio-economic impacts.

The Faculty of Public Health endorses the findings of an updated 2016 report from Medact that examines the evidence set out in over 350 academic papers published since the original Medact report in 2015, looking at the impact of fracking on local communities, the natural environment and climate change. The Faculty supports the call for an ongoing and permanent moratorium on fracking due to the possible serious public health risks involved, which include:

  • Adverse reproductive outcomes due to exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals;

  • Risk of respiratory effects resulting from ozone and smog formation;

  • Stress, anxiety and other psycho-social effects arising from actual and perceived social and economic disruption; and

  • The indirect effects of climate change produced by greenhouse gas emissions.

The 2016 report from Medact is supported by a detailed and fully referenced set of long notes about fracking as a public health issue, covering climate change, energy policy, carbon budgets and alternatives to shale gas.

12 December 2019

Public health experts in Scotland call for action on poverty to revive stalled life expectancy

Experts in public health from Scotland and across the UK have identified the low incomes faced by many Scottish citizens as the primary cause of Scotland’s stalling life expectancy, with those in Scotland’s poorest areas living shorter lives than seven years ago. At its Conference in Dunblane the Faculty of Public Health called for action on poverty to tackle this worrying trend.

Life expectancy in Scotland had been steadily improving since the 1940s but stalled in 2012, and has now started to fall for Scotland’s poorest people. Scotland is not alone in seeing this happen, with similar trends in England, Wales and Northern Ireland; whilst other countries such as Denmark have continued to enjoy rapidly improving life expectancy.

President of the Faculty of Public Health Professor Maggie Rae said, “Life expectancy has stalled because more people in their 30s, 40s and 50s are dying than in the past, with the poorest in Scotland most affected by this trend.

Many people are trying to survive on low incomes and in precarious employment. Social security has been reduced and it’s difficult for people to get – and retain – the financial support they need. We also know that funding pressures on local government and the NHS are having an effect, with all of this combining to negatively impact life expectancy.”

Convenor of the Faculty of Public Health in Scotland, Doctor Julie Cavanagh said, “This is the biggest public health challenge that Scotland has faced for many decades and without urgent action it will continue to impact people in Scotland for decades into the future. It will require strong political leadership and sustained action to turn these trends round. The health and wellbeing of Scotland’s population must be the priority in all public sector policy development.

The Faculty of Public Health wish to see a Scotland where everyone has an equal chance of a healthy life, rather than an unfair situation where low incomes, cuts to public services and social security are causing people in Scotland to die before their time. We are therefore calling upon local and national governments across the UK to take urgent action on poverty. We must work together to restore the life expectancy trajectory to the levels seen prior to 2012, and to the rates of improvements seen in other countries.”

29 November 2019

Event report: Building Environmental Sustainability into UK Public Health Research workshop

On Wednesday 9 October FPH's Sustainable Development Special Interest Group held a seminar at Strathclyde University on building environmental sustainability into UK public health research. Speakers at the event included Professor Karen Turner, Lynne McNiven, Dr Helen Walters, Phil Mackie and Sir Harry Burns. Read the full report and summary of discussions here.

21 November 2019

FPH declares climate emergency

Climate change is the greatest threat to global public health this century. We are entering a period of unprecedented environmental breakdown. Human activity is changing the planet’s biosphere bringing disruption to planetary health through climate change, air pollution, ocean acidification, deforestation and loss of biodiversity. A thriving global ecosystem is fundamental to human health and it is vital that we protect our planet.

Therefore, the Faculty of Public Health is joining a growing number of organisations in declaring a climate emergency that requires immediate action. We call upon governments around the globe and the entire public health workforce to be aware of the many aspects of this threat and to take urgent action to respond.

The Faculty of Public Health recognises that this threat cannot be tackled in isolation. We will work with our partners in public health and beyond to place health and social inequalities at the heart of climate change work, and ensure that public health is part of the solution to the greatest challenge of our time.

20 November 2019

FPH Alcohol SIG work with NICE to develop the 'Co-existing severe mental illness and substance misuse' quality standard

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) have recently published the ‘Coexisting severe mental illness and substance misuse’ quality standard. FPH’s Alcohol SIG was happy to work with NICE in developing these standards, which cover the assessment, management and care provided for people aged 14 and over who have coexisting severe mental illness and substance misuse. 

Click here to read more...

25 October 2019

Faculty of Public Health welcomes the Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) welcomes the decision made today to give children in Scotland full legal protection from physical assault. The Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill, which today (3 October 2019) passed Stage 3 proceedings in Holyrood will ensure children in Scotland have the same lawful protection from violence that adults are currently afforded.


FPH in Scotland has worked alongside a coalition of organisations to ensure that this vital piece of legislation passes through Scottish Parliament. In September we wrote an open letter to political party leaders in Scotland urging them to support the Bill in its final stage.
We are grateful to John Finnie MSP for lodging the Bill and to all Members who voted in favour. We are also grateful to our FPH members who have led on this piece of work, including Tamasin Knight and Convener of FPH in Scotland, Julie Cavanagh.


The experience of other countries which have acted on the evidence and delivered laws protecting children from violence demonstrated that doing so leads to a better future for families, and we are pleased to have helped support and empower families to give their children the best start in life.

03 October 2019

FPH and 15 others support the Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill

The Faculty of Public Health and 15 other professional healthcare bodies and charities have written to Scottish political party leaders asking them to support the Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill at the Stage 3 proceedings, taking place on Thursday 3 October 2019.

If passed, the Bill will offer children in Scotland the same lawful protection from violence that adults are currently afforded. Just as it is unlawful to hit a spouse, an elderly relative or an adult with or without a disability, it should no longer be lawful for parents or carer to hit a child. Evidence demonstrates that hitting children damages their health and well-being and that violence does not work as a strategy for improving behaviour.

This coalition of organisations wants a Scotland where all children can thrive. We want to support and empower families to give their children the best start in life, and we want to deliver this bill to stop the long-lasting consequences of violence against children in Scotland.

You can read the full letter here.

24 September 2019

FPH President Maggie Rae interviewed by Angela Cartwright, Chair of FPH's Specialty Registrars Committee

FPH's President Maggie Rae met with the Chair of FPH's Specialty Registrar Committee Angela Cartwright for a short interview filmed by Uy Hoang, Chair of FPH's Public Health Film Special Interest Group.

Angela and Maggie covered a range of topics including specialty training, collaborative working and what the future of public health might look like. Angela asked a range of questions from trainees and other members, including a number sent in via Twitter.

Click here to watch the interview.

19 September 2019

The Faculty of Public Health and 28 others raise concern over the consequences of a No Deal Brexit for the public’s health and well-being

Today, the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) and 28 other organisations have published a letter in the Guardian expressing our concern over the increasing likelihood of a No Deal Brexit and the risk this poses for the public's health and well-being.

In the letter, we report that long-term improvement in life expectancy has slowed, and for some age groups, gone into reverse, whilst the most vulnerable in our population face growing insecurity of income, employment and even food. We believe that all of these would be exacerbated by a No Deal Brexit.

We look to Government to confirm its continued commitment to public health protections and standards as Britain leaves the EU. This was an assurance gained following a major campaign led by FPH last year.

The coalition of organisations also asks Government to publish all assessments it has undertaken on the impact of different No Deal Brexit scenarios on health and to establish a system for monitoring impacts.

Professor Maggie Rae, President of the Faculty of Public Health said “Our key message is centred around the principle of ‘Do No Harm’. The health and well-being consequences of a No Deal Brexit are a major concern. I’m thankful to our partners across the sector in raising this message and asking Government to confirm its commitment to public health protections and standards as we leave the EU. Government should honour the ‘ Do No Harm’ commitments and publish assessments of the impact of No Deal Brexit on health and well-being and establish a monitoring system for health and well-being impacts going forward.”

4 September 2019

FPH welcomes the Government’s Prevention Green Paper

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) welcomes the Government’s prevention green paper published today. We look forward to continuing to work together with our members, partners and the Government to deliver the ambitious programme outlined in the paper.

Prevention is better than cure, and the timely release of this paper, despite current political challenges, signals the Government’s commitment to rebalance resources from treating avoidable illnesses to preventing them; promoting wellness and its wider determinants, and reducing health inequalities across England.

As the professional membership body for public health, we are uniquely positioned through our training, standards, policy work and through our members – the specialist public health workforce in the UK – to support the Government in delivering the outcomes laid out in today’s paper.

It is important though for the Government to recognise that reductions to the public health grant and wider council budgets must be reversed if the vision outlined in the prevention green paper is to become a reality. In order to achieve the ambitions of the paper it is vital that local delivery systems receive the £1 billion per annum increase in funding they need to deliver effective prevention.

The health index for England is particularly welcome as it will enable a much more holistic assessment of the wealth of England to be made. It will compliment GDP and other economic measures in providing a richer picture of the health and wellbeing of people and communities. It will help the nation to focus on the devastating impact underpinning inequalities in health outcomes; not just on health but also on the economic wellbeing of the nation, reducing inequalities in health outcomes policies nationally and locally to be cogent in order to have a meaningful impact on the wider determinants of health such as poverty and deprivation, education and employment in the context of some of our most vulnerable communities.

FPH have worked closely with the Association of Directors of Public Health and The Health Foundation, as well as the Local Government Association and our other partners to argue for increased spending for prevention and we look forward to continued collaboration.

Maggie Rae, FPH President said “FPH and our members welcome the Government’s ambition to place prevention at the heart of the health agenda, as outlined in today’s prevention green paper. We also recognise that for the local system to deliver effective prevention further funding is necessary. Preventing ill-health leads to the best results for individuals and for society and we look forward to working with the Government and our members to deliver the programme of work outlined in the paper.”

23 July 2019

FPH Statement on Public Health Reform in Scotland

FPH in Scotland, having welcomed our formal and informal involvement in the Scottish Government Public Health Reform process, have today published a statement on public health reform in Scotland.

There have been many strengths of the public health function in Scotland, and the implementation of a new national public health organisation for Scotland, as well as the ongoing process of public health reform creates many opportunities to further build on these strengths.

Recognising financial constraint, the statement focusses on ways in which the existing specialist services can be deployed most effectively, and where further development of the specialist function will be essential to addressing national public health priorities.

You can read the full statement here.

17 July 2019

Majority of NHS leaders say that new regulations to tackle obesity would most benefit the health of their local communities

According to research led by the UK Faculty of Public Health (FPH), the majority of NHS leaders say that new regulations to prevent obesity and its risks - such as diabetes and heart disease – could have the greatest positive impact on the health of local populations across the UK and they would like to see the NHS use its national platform more to advocate for these types of prevention measures.

Specifically, those surveyed by polling experts ComRes rank the following in their ‘top five’ regulatory or tax measures that they believe would most benefit their local population:

  • Adopting the marketing restrictions set out in chapter 2 of the government’s Childhood Obesity Plan, which includes banning junk food advertising before the 9pm watershed (64%)

  • Supporting local government and the NHS to improve access to weight management services (61%)

  • Following Brexit, reviewing the use of food subsidies and taxes to reduce the price of fruit and vegetables and raise the price of junk food (51%)

  • Using planning legislation to limit the proliferation of fast food outlets in certain areas (48%)

These proposed ‘no or low cost’ regulations have the potential to reduce rates of childhood obesity to pre-2000 levels and mitigate the cost of obesity-related chronic disease on the healthcare system, estimated at £5 billion per year. However, regulations alone are not enough to stop the rising burden of preventable diseases the UK faces today. Coordinated action across government departments, our communities, and the NHS is also needed.

Read full press release here.

20 June 2019

FPH welcomes call for urgent investment in public health services

FPH welcome the call from the King’s Fund and the Health Foundation for the government to act urgently to counter further cuts to the public health grant and place public health funding on a more sustainable footing for the future. Further cuts are now expected due to the likely postponement of this year’s Spending Review.

Professor Maggie Rae, President of the Faculty of Public Health said: “FPH members working in public health teams have gone to heroic lengths, in partnership with local government, to maintain and improve on current services within a climate of continually diminishing budgets. While teams have found ways to cope with these cuts –mostly through one-off recommissioning decisions – they have reached the absolute limit of the savings they can make without adverse consequences for the health of the public.

To continue to provide a high standard of services, public health teams require certainty that they will not face any additional, unplanned cuts due to the likely delay of the Spending Review. To meet the bold, prevention aspirations outlined in both the NHS Long Term Plan and the government’s Prevention Vision, public health teams also require clarity over the long term future of the public health grant and increased investment to support local service innovation.”

To support these aims, FPH has developed a proposal for a Prevention Transformation Fund for local authority public health teams worth between £1-2 billion per year, which you can read here.

We look forward to working with the government and other partners to ensure that public health teams have the funding and support they need to deliver all that is being asked of them and protect the health of the public. 

13 June 2019

FPH launches new-look annual report

We are proud to announce the publication of our new-look annual report which will today be launched at our Annual General Meeting (AGM) today. Developed to celebrate the different ways we made an impact in 2018, the report details the progress we’ve made against our strategic objectives, and explains how FPH is governed and how we fund our work.

It is also a celebration of the work that FPH members and staff have collectively achieved and the positive impact it’s had on the public health specialty.

Professor John Middleton, President of FPH, said: “You – our members – are the golden thread that runs through everything we do as an organisation. Whether it be helping to develop the public health curriculum and invigilating exams, or delivering work on behalf of our committees and SIGs, you are responsible for our success last year and we can’t thank you enough.”

Please click here to read this year’s annual report and share your feedback by emailing us at news@fph.org.uk.

12 June 2019

Health Education England’s Population Health and Prevention programme

From HEE

As the Health Education England’s (HEE) Population Health and Prevention (PHP) programme, we work to train and educate the workforce to equip them with the competencies and leadership skills to deliver population health and prevention.

We have a wide remit of work: Public Mental Health, Infection Management, Population Health and Prevention, which includes behaviour change and lifestyle, and most recently Population Health Management. The development of digital educational solutions underpins all four areas.

The programme was established in 2014 and since then we have developed training and education content that contribute to improved care and efficiency of the health and care system. Working in partnership with key stakeholders in Public Health we offer several educational resources:

Population Wellbeing Portal
Making Every Contact Count (MECC) website and MECC eLearning
Mental Health Promotion and Wellbeing action plan and Public Mental Health content guides
Antimicrobial Resistance and Infections eLearning package
Think Sepsis

Read more...

10 June 2019

Scottish Parliament votes in favour of Bill to ban smacking 

On 28 May, 80 Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) voted in favour of The Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill after the Stage 1 debate in Hollyrood. Dr Tamasin Knight, consultant in public health medicine, provided evidence in support of the Bill on behalf of the Committee of the Faculty of Public Health in Scotland. Click here to read the full story.

30 May 2019

FPH and the Royal College of Psychiatrists join forces to deliver fully-booked mental health conference

In May 2019, FPH's Public Mental Health Special Interest Group (SIG) co-hosted a fully-booked conference with RCPsych dedicated to discussing effective public mental health prevention. Click here to read about the talks given on the day and to find out how you can join the SIG.

22 May 2019

Prof Ian Roberts calls on the UK Government to improve access to TXA at FPH’s inaugural Bazalgette Lecture 

On 14 May, Prof Ian Roberts - the winner of FPH's Bazalgette Champion of Evidence Award - gave the inaugural Bazalgette lecture on the research he and his colleagues have led on using tranexamic acid (TXA) to prevent deaths from acute severe bleeding. Click here to read more about the lecture and why he is using his year as FPH's first-ever Bazalgette Professor to improve access to TXA in low and middle income countries such as Ethiopia, Nigeria, India and Bangladesh. 

16 May 2019

Sally Bradley: remembrance from colleagues

"Sally Bradley was the real thing. She was a lovely, delightful, highly intelligent and motivated woman with absolutely no side to her. She was modest but assertive about the causes she believed in, especially social justice, the position of women and holding out a welcome to all no matter where they came from. Her family can be proud of her contribution. She made a significant contribution to the public health of the people of Salford and Greater Manchester as a GP, Director of Public Health and later as Medical Director of Pennine Acute Hospital.

She was a pioneer of modern public health, leading on the implementation of access to the morning after pill from all the pharmacies in Salford in time for the Christmas party seasons and making a significant contribution to the reduction of teenage pregnancy.

It is a bitter irony that she appears to have been the victim of sectarian hatred. At a time when the world is crying out for love and real leadership we need many more Sallys."

John Ashton 

"Sally Bradley was a friend and colleague. She was always full of fun and keen to try new things and to innovate. We worked together when I was DPH in Manchester and she was DPH in Salford. She was a supportive colleague, with the health of people at the forefront of her actions. She was able to combine a population approach with the valuable patient insights she had as a GP. She moved roles between clinician, PH consultant and clinical manager throughout her career which meant she had a special contribution to give in each of her roles. Her life was cut short in the tragic events in Sri Lanka. A light turned out by sectarian hatred. We will miss her."

Ann Hoskins

15 May 2019

FPH’s Africa SIG awarded a grant to establish a new health partnership with Ghana

FPH is delighted to announce that our Africa Special Interest Group (SIG) has been awarded a grant by the Tropical Health and Education Trust (THET) to deliver work on antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) in Ghana. 

Click here to read the full story.

1 May 2019

FPH members elect Professor John Newton as Vice President

FPH is delighted to announce the election of Professor John Newton as our new Vice President. John will take up office following the 12 June AGM for a term of three years.

John is Director of Health Improvement at Public Health England. He is a former Regional Director of Public Health for NHS South Central, Director of Research and Development in two large NHS teaching hospitals (Southampton and Oxford) and Chief Executive of the charity UK Biobank.

John brings with him experience and expertise in strategic leadership, management and communication to FPH and we very much look forward to working with him and our members to improve the health and wellbeing of local communities and national populations.

On his election, John said “It’s a great privilege to be able to serve FPH as Vice President and I look forward to supporting the new President in any way I can. There are many pressing public health issues across the UK and internationally, and FPH is well placed to help its members address them.”

Incoming FPH President Maggie Rae said “I would like to offer my congratulations to John Newton on his appointment as FPH Vice President. John brings with him a wealth of experience to the role of Vice President and I look forward to working with him and FPH members to protect and improve the health of the public”

The full results of the election are available via the FPH online members’ area.

25 April 2019

FPH announces the winner of the Bazalgette Professorship Champion of Evidence Award

FPH is delighted to announce Ian Roberts, Professor of Epidemiology & Public Health and co-director of the Clinical Trials Unit at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine as the winner of the 2019 Award.

Professor Roberts has been awarded the Bazalgette professorship for translating his research on tranexamic acid in the management of acute severe bleeding into practice, benefiting populations in the UK and globally. Click here to read more.

1 April 2019

FPH and the Soil Association publish “Sustainable Food Systems for a Healthier UK: A discussion paper”

FPH’s Food Special Interest Group has published a discussion paper in collaboration with The Soil Association examining sustainable food systems.

The paper discusses the relevance and importance of food systems to population health within the UK, and provides related recommendations that support the public’s health through healthy and sustainable food systems. 

In particular, the paper discusses links between the food system, environmental sustainability and population health. It asks the public health community to take a broad focus on food within policy, advocacy, research, programmes and interventions and to consider the sustainability of food systems from an ecological model perspective of public health, for populations now and in the future.

You can download and read the full paper here.

15 March 2019

Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health certificate awarded to FPH

In 2017, FPH signed the Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health. We're proud to share the certificate we've received from Public Health England which reflects our organisational commitments towards achieving better mental health. Click here to view the certificate and read the commitments in full.

To find out more about the Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health, read the blog our President Professor John Middleton wrote after he signed it on behalf of FPH in 2017 via this link.

27 February 2019

Voting opens on Monday 11 March for the election of a new FPH Vice President

We are very pleased to announce that four nominations have been received for the election of our next Vice President.  Details of the candidates and the arrangements for the ballot can be found here.

27 February 2019

FPH’s Welfare Rights Special Interest Group (SIG) wins award from the Health Foundation

We are delighted that our Welfare Rights SIG, led by Prof Mark Gamsu, has been awarded a Health Foundation grant as part of their Taking Action on the Social Determinants of Health programme.

As part of this programme, the Health Foundation called on UK Public Health Network organisations to partner with organisations outside the public health community, that work in or can influence the social determinants of health, exploring innovative ways to work across sectors. The programme is supporting five projects that will each run for 12–18 months.

Our project – run in partnership with UK Health Forum and Citizens Advice – focuses on the role of money and income in shaping our health. In the UK there is evidence of increasing problematic debt and financial insecurity, and growing levels of destitution. Data on these areas exist, but they are not brought together systematically. This project will involve developing a single dataset which will then be piloted by public health teams in a number of local authority areas. The aim is to test whether providing this coherent framework on financial insecurity and problematic debt can help to improve the quality of services such as mental health and primary care.

FPH appoints James Gore as CEO

FPH’s Board has appointed James Gore as the new CEO. Before stepping into the interim CEO position in September 2018, James was the Director of Education and Standards at FPH and has been with the organisation for over a decade. He comes to the role armed with a wealth of knowledge that will help steer the organisation forward.

In response to his appointment, James said: “I am proud and honoured to have been appointed as the new CEO of FPH. After over a decade working at FPH in various roles, I look forward to working in a new capacity in supporting our dedicated Trustees, members and excellent staff team. Moving forwards, I am committed to putting our membership at the heart of everything we do and ensuring that FPH is the professional membership organisation that our members expect and deserve. With the support of the team, I am committed to improving the services we provide as well as engaging with and supporting our members and partners in their efforts to improve the public’s health.”

Prof John Middleton, President, FPH, said: “I’m delighted that James has been appointed as FPH’s new CEO. We’ve worked closely together for many years and I know that he’ll do a stellar job of leading the organisation at such an important time for public health and the members we serve.”

Prof Maggie Rae, Incoming President, FPH, said: “James’ appointment as FPH’s new CEO is very well deserved. When my Presidency starts in June, I’m looking forward to working together to champion FPH’s organisational priorities of public health standards, our workforce, policy, knowledge and evidence-sharing, and continuing our work on education and training.”

31 January 2019

Nominations Open for FPH Vice President

Nominations are now open for FPH’s new Vice President to take up office from the FPH AGM on 12 June 2019 for a term of three years.

The Vice President serves as a deputy to the FPH President, providing strategic leadership and acting as an ambassador to promote and develop the work of the FPH.

The post is open to all FPH Fellows but candidates can be nominated by any voting member of FPH, so please consider nominating colleagues for this important post and, if appropriate, encourage them to put their name forward.

If you require any further information about the election process, please contact Caroline Wren at carolinewren@fph.org.uk, 020 3696 1464. John Middleton or Maggie Rae would be happy to discuss the role with interested colleagues. Please e-mail president@fph.org.uk or registrar@fph.org.uk.

Nomination papers, including a full role description are available here. The deadline for nominations is 5pm on Monday 25 February 2019

17 January 2019

Call for nominations for three FPH Local Board Members

Nominations are open for the election of Local Board Members (LBMs) for the North West region, the West Midlands and the East Midlands.

LBMs play a key role in the strategic leadership of FPH, engaging with, and representing the interests of, local Faculty members.  A detailed post description can be found in the nomination papers - North West, West Midlands, East Midlands.

The posts are open to all FPH voting members.  The deadline for nominations is Wednesday 13 February 2019.

17 January 2019

Nominations open for election of new FPH Registrar

Following the election of our current Registrar, Maggie Rae, as President, we have a vacancy for a new Registrar from the AGM in June.  This is an exciting opportunity to play an active role in the strategic leadership of FPH, with a particular focus on workforce development, public health standards, and FPH membership and governance.

Further details about the post can be found in the nomination papers.  The deadline for nominations is 29 January 2019.

17 January 2019

FPH Fellow awarded OBE in New Year Honours

Dr Charlie Foster, who teaches on the MSc Nutrition, Physical Activity and Public Health course at the University of Bristol, was awarded an OBE in recognition of his work to promote physical activity. Click here to read more.

4 January 2019

FPH election results announced

Thank you to all of our members who voted or stood for a position in the recent elections. Please click here to see who was successfully elected as our new President and three General Board Members (GBMs).

21 December 2018

Local Board funding and support available for 2019

Thank you to all Local Board members who offered feedback on how FPH can help support Local Board regional events. We appreciate that some Boards are experiencing financial and resource pressures in hosting regional events and FPH wish to help support these networking opportunities.

In 2019, FPH will offer our conference call facility for one of each of the Local Board's scheduled meetings at no cost and will also fund each Local Board with £250 to support meetings in 2019.

We hope these resources will help Local Boards to connect with FPH members across their region.

For more information, and to take advantage of these opportunities please contact jenniferelder@fph.org.uk

4 December 2018

Get more involved with FPH by standing for election for one of three key leadership roles

Nominations open on Monday 3 December for the election of three FPH Officers, all of which are key leadership roles. They are:

  1. Treasurer – who is responsible for the Faculty’s financial affairs and ensuring its financial viability;
  2. Academic Registrar – who provides strategic leadership for the Faculty’s examinations, training and continuing education in public health; and
  3. Assistant Academic Registrar – who serves as a deputy to the Academic Registrar, supporting the provision of high quality examinations, training and education.

The positions are open to all FPH Fellows in good standing and provide an exciting opportunity to engage in the strategic leadership of FPH, helping to shape the future of our organisation and public health. So, if you have a special interest in examinations, training and education, or financial affairs, and would like the opportunity to make a positive impact using your skills and expertise, we would be delighted to receive a nomination from you.

If you are not a Fellow but know someone who’d be perfect for one of the above positions, tell them – it could be the nudge they need to put themselves forward!

Nomination papers, including post descriptions, can be found here:

 Treasurer
 Academic Registrar
 Assistant Academic Registrar

The deadline for nominations is 5pm on Wednesday 9 January 2019. Please note, in accordance with our Standing Orders, all candidates must be nominated by a voting member of the Board; a list of Board members is included in the nomination packs.

The successful candidates will take up post from FPH’s AGM on 12 June 2019.

If you require any further information about the elections, please contact Caroline Wren - carolinewren@fph.org.uk, 020 3696 1464.

3 December 2018

Vice President of Policy resigns

Steve Watkins having served as VP Policy has decided to step down from his post.  Steve has been very busy since his retirement trying to fit in his various commitments with THSG, UNITE and FPH, not to mention family and writing.  He has come to realise that there just isn’t enough time available to fulfil these commitments to his desired standard.  This is not a decision that Steve has taken lightly. 

We wish Steve every success in his roles at THSG and UNITE and with the completion of his books, and thank him for the energy and enthusiasm he has brought to the role of VP Policy. 

27 November 2018 

Voting opens on Monday 12 November for the election of a new FPH President and three General Board Members

We are very pleased to announce that two nominations have been received for the election of a new President and six nominations for the three General Board Member vacancies.  Click here for details of the candidates and the arrangements for the ballot.

1 November 2018

FPH encourages members to get involved in choosing the new FPH President 

Nominations are open to find FPH’s new President and we want all of our members to get involved with the election process. If you’re a Fellow of FPH and keen to take on an important leadership role, please consider running for election. Click here to read more about the role and to find out how you can stand for election or nominate someone.

28 September 2018

FPH encourages members to get more involved with the organisation by standing for election to join the Board

Nominations are open for three General Board Members at FPH. Whether you’re just starting out in your career or perhaps you’ve got ten years’ experience under your belt but want a new challenge, becoming a Board member is accessible to all of our voting members. Click here to read more about how you can stand for election or nominate someone you think would be great for the role. 

28 September 2018

DARE Lecture 2018

This year's DARE Lecture was given by Prof Tim Lang on post-Brexit food policy. During the lecture he shared his opinions on the key issues facing the UK’s food system, background on food history and why that’s relevant to today’s challenges, and the value of the UK maintaining relationships with its European neighbours post-Brexit to protect the public’s health. You can re-watch his lecture here.

What is the DARE lecture and how did it come about?

In 1983 a group of consultants and community physicians, protesting against the divisive pay rise awarded to doctors in the NHS (whilst other health staff had had to battle for a pay award half of that given to doctors) established the ‘Doctors’ Awards Redistribution Enterprise’ (DARE). The charity was initially funded from four year covenants made by these doctors, of the difference between the pay rise they received and that which they would have had, if they had been treated the same as other NHS staff. The money was used to fund new developments in priority services which wouldn’t have happened without this money. The DARE lecture is the legacy from this work and aims to challenge and stimulate debate on developments within the NHS and public health.

10 July 2018

FPH celebrates its members at annual awards ceremony

On Thursday 7 June, we welcomed new and current members to our annual awards ceremony. Faculty Awards are often established by our members through donations and legacies, as a way of rewarding our members and registrars for outstanding work and recognising their contributions to public health in the UK and around the world and you can read about all of this year's winners by clicking here. We're also proud to share blogs from two of our winners; Steven Senior, who won the Michael O’Brien Prize for outstanding performance in the MFPH Part A exam, wrote this blog to share advice on preparing for it. Victoria Turner, who won the McEwen Award for the highest score in the Part B exam, penned this piece with her top tips for passing Part B.

29 June 2018

Global public health professionals collaborate at ASPHER conference to discuss public health capacity development

On Wednesday 20 June, senior public health professionals from across the world convened in London to better understand the current global engagement of members from the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER). Click here to read more about the aim of the day and what was achieved.

28 June 2018

FPH members and health professionals recognised in Queen’s Birthday Honours List

The achievements of seven extraordinary FPH members and professionals from across the health sector have been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. Click here to find out who was awarded and what they said in response to receiving such prestigious awards.

28 June 2018

FPH members win Queen’s Award following success of innovative sexual health service, SH:24

Dr Gillian Holdsworth and Dr Paula Baraitser have today been given the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for SH:24, the London sexual health provider that the pair co-founded in 2015. Since it was introduced, testing rates in Lambeth & Southwark have doubled and there has been an 8% reduction in STI rates. It’s also led to an estimated £500k saving to the local sexual health economy. Click here to read more.

28 June 2018

FPH in Scotland endorses the Scottish Government Public Health Priorities

Today the Scottish Government has published its public health priorities for tackling the challenging and persistent health issues in Scotland. FPH members have been working with the Scottish Government Public Health Reform Team throughout the process of development of these priorities, which aim to focus government and public sector services in Scotland in a co-ordinated effort towards a step change in health improvement. Click here to read more.

14 June 2018

FPH launches a 'blueprint' for the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC)

FPH has developed a ‘blueprint’ to recommend how the UK could continue its relationship with ECDC after Brexit. Our hope is that it will be used to support the Government in delivering their commitments to improve health security and maintain the important and mutually beneficial collaboration with Europe on health issues. 

Click here to read our full statement and download the blueprint.  

13 June 2018

FPH President, Prof John Middleton, along with the heads of 39 other organisations calls on the House of Lords to vote for the Do No Harm amendment to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill

 

Together, they wrote to the editor of The Guardian to ask Peers from across the House to put the amendment on the face of the Bill to ensure that we don't roll back on the progress we've made in public health since we've been part of the EU. Read the letter in full here.

 

20 April 2018

 

"Brexit is one of the biggest public health issues facing this generation", says FPH President, Prof John Middleton, in The Times 

The health community unites in calling on the House of Lords to protect the public's health as we leave the European Union by talking in favour of the Do No Harm amendment to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill that would do just that. Read the full article here.

19 April 2018

"The public health community has gone to heroic lengths to do more with less but now is the time for us to unite and make the case for investing in public health"

 

FPH President, Prof John Middleton, calls on the public health community to unite in making the case for prevention in the Local Government Chronicle. Read the full comment piece here.

10 April 2018

The Local Government Association (LGA) has published the Standards for Employers of Public Health Teams in England

The employer standards published by the LGA are the outcome of work carried out by the Standing Group on Local Public Health Teams, on which FPH serves, and follows consultation on draft standards last Autumn.

These standards set out how good employers should support their public health people to develop and maintain their skills and knowledge and to retain their professional skills and registration, thus enabling them to provide an effective service to the public, deliver public health functions at all grades and professions and in all employment settings, and to work effectively. In short, this is 'what good looks like'. These expectations are in line with regulatory and improvement frameworks for public services and used by service and professional regulators.

The standards enable an effective alignment between FPH as the professional standard-setting body for public health professionals and the standards that employers set for a competent, capable and effective workforce. They also highlight the role of professional regulation and registration in maintaining professional standards and underpinning duties of professional and technical integrity.

Click here to read the joint letter from FPH President, Prof John Middleton, and UK Public Health Register Chair, Andrew Jones to directors of public health in England.

23 February 2018

Supreme Court backs minimum alcohol price

The UK Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that the Scottish Government’s legislation on Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP) is legal. This is a landmark moment for public health and the end of a long journey. However, it also marks the start of a new journey to implement MUP to reduce alcohol-related harm in Scotland. When implemented this will mean that no alcohol can be sold in Scotland for less than 50p per unit.

Read the blog written by Dr Lesley Graham and Dr Harpreet S Kohli here.

15 November 2017

Major programme launched to help councils prevent mental illness 

Public Health England (PHE) has published a major set of resources to help local authorities and their partners take action to promote better mental health and prevent mental ill health in their communities. FPH is delighted to have contributed to the development of the Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health along with partners in the community and voluntary sector, the Association of Directors of Public Health, the Local Government Association, the Department of Health and PHE.

The aim of the concordat is to adopt a prevention-focused approach for positive mental health through the development of alliances across and between local authorities, the NHS, private, public and voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations, education settings and employers.

FPH recognises that words must translate into action and commits to addressing the mental health impacts in all policies and policy statements; as a standard-setter and educator, we will include positive mental health in our education and training programmes, and as an employer we will work to become a Mindful Employer.

To learn more about the mental health concordat, read this blog written by FPH President, Prof John Middleton.

9 October 2017

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