The Cheshire and Merseyside (C&M) Directors of Public Health (DsPH) currently meet weekly. The key messages from the 18th February meeting are as follows:
- Planning session for health protection – A session will be held on 25th February with all DsPH and UKHSA colleagues to look at the future health protection system in C&M following changes in national policy.
- UKHSA update – Colleagues are awaiting the announcement from the Prime Minister on Monday 21st February as to any changes to current regulations and will join DsPH in the health protection planning session on 25th
- NHS England (NHSE) 12-15 year olds vaccination update – DsPH were updated on this programme which has seen good uptake in some areas with lower uptake in areas of inequalities. The NHSE team has mapped these areas and each DsPH will receive a pack with postcodes in their Local Authority of areas to target with interventions. The NHS England communications team have commissioned some social media activity to encourage take up and a schools toolkit has been developed which gives parents links and resources about the vaccination programme.
- HCP Mental health Board update – An update was given on the work of this Board which has DPH representation. Funding bids have been put forward for the Lived Experience Network for suicide prevention, increased mental health support for the voluntary sector and severe mental illness and health checks. A meeting is being planned around signing up to the Mental Health Concordat and there is a Suicide Prevention Board meeting being held on 23 March.
- Public Health Research Network – Following the first workshop to engage colleagues on the need for a subregional research network, a paper was discussed and endorsed by DsPH on the launch of this network which is funded by the National Institute of Health Research. The launch event details will be sent out in due course.
- Good news and gratitude:
- Thanks were given to Leon Williams of the HCP, who has now moved onto a new role, for his hard work on the testing programme.
- DsPH expressed their gratitude to the Food Active team for their advocacy work around unhealthy food and drinks.
- The Royal Society for Public Health has published its vaccination tool kit, which the Collaborative contributed to.