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.