The pledge was made during a full council meeting at Shire Hall on Tuesday 23 February 2012. The public interest debate provided county councillors, health practitioners, district councillors and members of the public with an opportunity to discuss how health care will be developed in Warwickshire in light of the national proposals for Public Health to be integrated into local authorities.
Key speakers at the debate included Bryan Stoten, Chair of the Shadow Health and Well Being Board, Alison Gingell, Chair of the Arden Cluster, Dr John Linnane, Director of Public Health and Wendy Fabbro, Strategic Director for the People Group at Warwickshire County Council.
Deputy Leader and Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Public Health, Councillor Bob Stevens said:
“The public debate gave us a real insight into the challenges we will face as we move forward with the transfer of public health to the local authority.
“All parties have agreed that we need to take a more assertive role in addressing health inequalities within the county. However, we recognise that this can only be achieved if all agencies dealing with health including district and boroughs, clinical commissioning groups and our NHS colleagues are working together with common aims of improving the health and well being of the residents of Warwickshire.”
Director of Public Health, John Linnane said:
“The Government have reaffirmed their commitment to tackling inequality in public health and as Public Health transfers to Warwickshire County Council, we need to ensure that commitment to address inequality is at the heart of everything we do. This will include ensuring that we have a fully integrated policy to tackle smoking, obesity and alcohol dependency in order for residents to live longer, healthier and more fulfilling lives.”
As part of the pledge, Warwickshire County Council will now establish a programme of work to actively engage with key groups across Warwickshire.