Key messages from the Cheshire and Merseyside Directors of Public Health | 17th May 2024

The Cheshire and Merseyside (C&M) Directors of Public Health (DsPH) met on Friday 17th May for their system leadership meeting.

The key messages from the meeting are below, along with items of good news and gratitude.

C&M Child and Family Poverty Situational Analysis

Eustace de Sousa (Non-Executive Director, Liverpool University Hospitals) updated the DsPH on progress of this work which includes a review of action on child poverty in each area and at system level, along with data analysis and summarising evidence-based interventions.

A report with recommendations will be presented to DsPH in July.

All Together Smokefree

The new framework was shared with DsPH along with proposed programme activity.

All Together Fairer anchor institutions

DsPH received an update on the recently completed work by Advancing Quality Alliance (AQUA) on the anchor programme in C&M.

This included an alignment workshop, an opportunities assessment and a series of recommendations to help expand and develop anchor institutions. There have been a further 25 institutions that have become anchors and a new tool kit will help with further expansion.

UK Health and Security Agency (UKHSA): North West update

Measles are still prominent in London and there is a slow, steady increase in the North West. The North West multi-agency Incident Management Team will continue to meet, but less frequently.

There has been a large increase in cases of Pertussis (Whooping Cough) and UKHSA have formed a national standard incident team. A maternal vaccination tool kit has been shared with the NHS and local places. The second phase of the childhood immunisation campaign will take place in July following the successful March/April campaign.

Good news and gratitude

a) Following the recent local elections, the DsPH would like to congratulate and welcome all new health and wellbeing portfolio holders in Cheshire and Merseyside. They would also like to extend their gratitude to outgoing health and wellbeing portfolio holders for their commitment and dedication to improving health and wellbeing.

b) There was good public health representation at the recent national alcohol conference, where presentations were delivered by lead DPH Margaret Jones around the North West alcohol consensus statement and Ravi Menghani around PROACT, with positive feedback being received.

c) The Knowsley public health team has expanded with the appointment of three new posts.

d) Thanks were expressed to DPH Ruth du Plessis who has recently presented on the suicide prevention work being done across C&M at two national conferences.

e) Congratulations to Diane Draper who has been appointed to a Neurodiversity and Wellbeing post in the School of Public Health and Andy Turner (Cheshire East Council) who has taken on the role of Faculty of Public Health Wellbeing Champion.

f) Well done to the North West public health trainees who have all passed their core membership exams.

g) James Woolgar from Liverpool’s public health team has written a blog in the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Health’s online newsletter around commissioning for quality.

h) Ian Ashworth, Director of Population Health at NHS Cheshire and Merseyside, attended a recent House of Lords pre-term birth committee meeting and expressed his thanks to those areas who had provided information on the local initiatives to support pregnant women.

I) Helen Bromley, DPH Cheshire West and Chester, thanked the UKHSA North West team for the recent support given to Cheshire West and Chester as they dealt with three incidents.