The Cheshire & Merseyside (C&M) Directors of Public Health (DsPH) met on Friday 21 February for their system leadership meeting. The key messages are as follows.

  1. Cheshire & Warrington (C&W) Public Sector Transformation Board (PSTB)  – Dawn Leicester attended a workshop held by the C&W PSTB to review the Board’s work programme. Recent successful funding bids were considered. A white paper for Devolution will be produced later in the year and C&W are exploring opportunities. Dawn also shared a paper on C&M becoming a Marmot Community which was fully supported by the PSTB.
  2. Liverpool City Region (LCR) portfolio holders support MUP and Marmot – Julie Webster attended the LCR portfolio holders meeting in January with a paper regarding Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP) community and the new insight work. The paper was well received and Julie will take a report back to LCR portfolio holders once the results of the insight work are available. Matthew Ashton also took a paper on C&M becoming a Marmot Community to the LCR portfolio holders earlier in February which again was supported.
  3. LCR CEOs briefed on Collaborative work – Sue Forster presented an annual update on Champs Collaborative to the LCR CEOs who were very positive about the report. They were particularly impressed with the results achieved so far and the extensive external investment secured for public health activity in C&M.
  4. LCR Metro Mayor briefed on suicide prevention  – LCR Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, has been updated by Sue Forster on the No More Suicide programme of work led by the Collaborative. Discussions also took place around potential links to the new LCR the fair employment charter. A meeting is planned for 3 March with Steve Rotheram to inform him of the work taking place on MUP.
  5. C&M Health & Care Partnership (HCP) – Eileen O’Meara updated that the HCP have just appointed a new CEO, Dr Jackie Bene so Eileen will connect with Dr Bene regarding the HCP population health programme. The Prevention Board key messages were shared and can be viewed here. The Marmot Community paper was shared with the HCP Senior Management Board (SMB) and was supported and will be aligned with the NHS Prevention Pledge. The recent HCP “check point review” went well and the SMB are happy with the progress that is being made with the Prevention programme.
  6. PHE update on drug related deaths and public health apprenticeship scheme - Presentations were given by Susan Barton-Johal from PHE NW on drug related deaths and the self audit tool kit and it was agreed to adopt an SLI approach. Richard Phillips also from PHE NW spoke about workforce development including the degree level public health apprenticeship scheme. There will be a further workshop on the proposed apprenticeship scheme on 24th April for DsPH and local authority apprenticeship leads.
  7. Update on PHE Centres and Coronavirus – David Hearne gave an update on the transformation work for PHE Centres to match NHS footprints and a detailed discussion took place on Coronavirus and the plans that are in place and how DsPH can best support their localities.   
  8. NHSE update – Julie Kelly updated that they are holding an event in March with mature Primary Care Networks around improving MMR vaccination rates. The FIT test for Bowel Cancer Screening continues to work well and plans are in place to manage capacity at laboratories with an increase in responders.

The DsPH and colleagues also shared items of good news:

  • Julie Kelly reported that healthcare workers in C&M have the second highest uptake rate for flu vaccination in the country.
  • Eileen O’Meara and Ifeoma Onyia presented at the recent national CVD conference where C&M’s work on blood pressure was highly praised and the national team is interested in shadowing C&M to gain further learning.
  • The Collaborative has received further investment from NHSE to continue its work on suicide prevention in 2021.
  • Sue Forster has been asked to present at the LGA/NHSCC Annual Health and Wellbeing Political and Clinical Leadership Summit, ‘Leading Healthier Places’ on the 18th March. Sue will be joined by Cllr Anthony Burns Cabinet Member for health and wellbeing at St Helens. Council.
  • Matthew Ashton and Eileen O’Meara will be presenting the Collaborative’s approach at the King’s Fund Population Health Conference on 29 April.