Tag Archives: Patient engagement

Tackling health inequalities: the case for investment in the wider public health workforce

Title of driver: Tackling health inequalities: the case for investment in the wider public health workforce

Source: Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH)

Link to main document

Publication format: PDF

Date of publication: June 2014

Summary of driver: A proposal to engage professionals working outside the public health sector, to harness their skills and motivation in order to positively impact public health in their communities. The report argues that through the promotion of healthy behaviour and encouragement of healthier lifestyles, health inequalities within local communities can be addressed which could in turn help to reduce the national incidence of lifestyle-related disease and safeguard resources in the NHS.

Key features of driver:

  • The report highlights the pressures that are placed on the welfare system, the economy and social justice, with a cost to the NHS alone of around £5.5 billion (Frontier Economics. Estimating the Costs of Health Inequalities: A Report Prepared for the Marmot Review. London: Frontier Economics Ltd, 2010);
  • The ‘wider public health workforce’ is discussed and defined as: any organisation or individual, who is not a professionally qualified public health specialist, but has the ability or opportunity to positively impact public health;
  • 5 health initiatives are discussed and their effectiveness assessed in the context of: health outcomes, social benefits  and financial costs, benefits and sustainability) in tackling health inequality and encouraging healthier lifestyles: (1) health trainer service (funded community-based), (2) health champions initiative (community volunteers), (3) Making Every Contact Count’ (health promotion within organisations), the role of non-health professionals and (4) the creation of ‘healthy settings’ (schools and universities);
  • The report comments that each stakeholder group (trainers, champions and clients) report a wide range of benefits that extend beyond simple improvements to physical health – improved mental well being, increased social interaction, higher levels of community cohesion and improved career prospects;
  • Barriers to achieving change are described with 2 areas of particular concern being: the ability of the workforce to integrate with ‘hard-to-reach’ groups and the need for greater research  particularly into the extent to which behaviour change is sustained and the cost-effectiveness of programmes.

Primary audience: Local Government Authorities

Impact on library policy/practice:

  • Opportunity to work collaboratively with colleagues in Public Health England to raise awareness of the wider public health workforce initiatives and communicate this to healthcare staff in primary and secondary care, for them to promote to patients and families;
  • Opportunity to liaise with colleagues in public libraries to offer an evidence-base (literature, displays, talks) for their library users; showing how positive health outcomes and improved quality of life can be achieved by small changes in lifestyle e.g. better diet, regular exercise, engaging in community recreation and health education schemes;
  • Commitment by library and knowledge service managers and resource librarians to incorporate a selection of health promotion and ‘healthier living’ resources into library stock and promote widely within our NHS organisations;
  • Support Health Education England events in our regions e.g. Health Education Week to raise awareness of healthier lifestyle choices which can have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of our local communities; families, friends and neighbours.

Date last updated: September 2014

Due for review: September 2015

Group member responsible: ME

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Research and Development Strategy (Draft) 2013 – 2018

Title: Research and Development Strategy (Draft) 2013 – 2018

Source: NHS England

Link to main document

Publication format: PDF

Date of publication: Dec 2013

Summary of driver: The NHS England research strategy supports the goals set out in the NHS England business plan (NHS England 2013); supporting and developing the commissioning system to improve quality and outcomes. It seeks to develop a culture in the NHS that values and promotes research and engages staff and patients in research activities for improved healthcare outcomes.

Key features of driver:

Key Objectives:

• Working closely with Department of Health (DH) and National Institute for Health and Research (NIHR) to coordinate research into commissioning health services;

• Develop an evidence base to support effective decision making by commissioning groups;

• Enable NHS England and commissioning staff to undertake and implement research in order to help improve the quality of care and treatment in the NHS;

• Encourage patients to take part in research and to be considered when setting priorities for research;

• Better inform the public on current research and outcomes from completed research;

• Maximise outcomes from research to stimulate innovation, improve income generation, develop knowledge and achieve impact.

Key Priorities:

• Promote non-commercial and commercial research in the NHS that have the greatest impact on outcomes;

• Engage with clinical leaders across all professions, with academia, industry, and with non clinical researchers in health and social care;

• Support the NHS Outcomes Framework 2014-15 and innovative practice as outlined in Innovation, Health and Wealth, Accelerating Adoption and Diffusion in the NHS (2011)

• Develop a patient engagement and involvement in research strategy

Primary audience: NIHR, Health Research Authority, Clinical Commissioning leads, NHS Trusts.

Impact on library policy/practice:

• Opportunity to engage with clinical commissioning groups and encourage evidence-based decision making – for example, outsourcing library services to CCGs/CSUs where appropriate;

• Responsibility to support the dissemination of clinical research outcomes to wider stakeholders, including patient groups;

• Responsibility to disseminate NICE guidelines and other high quality research to clinical teams and managers to help foster research awareness, translation of research evidence into practice and the rapid adoption of innovation within local NHS Trusts.

• Good practice to identify clinical and non-clinical priorities within the Trust and provide evidence update services to assist teams / managers with health service planning (e.g. pathway re-design), clinical improvement, commissioning plans and health systems design;

• Good practice to support effective knowledge transfer pathways /systems within local Trusts by ensuring that the library service has clear relationships with key departments and effective reporting channels e.g. Chief Knowledge Officer, Team Knowledge Officers and library representative attends relevant department meetings e.g. Education, Learning and Development, Research and Development, Clinical Governance, Informatics.

Date last updated: 14/07/2014

Due for review: July 2015

Group member responsible: ME